Written by Troy Nye Saturday, 23 July 2005 00:00
My goal was to finish in the top 25%. With 78 racers starting the race, that meant I needed to be no worse than 20th. After the first stage (20.6 mi with 3472 ft. of climbing), I was happy to learn that I was in 19th place, nicely on track, but very little room for error. After the second stage, or the "Queen's Stage" as I like to call it (18.9 mi with 4229 ft. of climbing), I was thrilled to have improved my position to 16th overall. All I had to do now was keep the wheels on it and stay out of trouble. Stage 3, or the stage from hell as I now like to call it (10.5 mi with 1599 ft. of climbing), was where I fell apart. After 5 miles of passing no one and getting passed by no one, it seemed like 16th place was in the bag. Then somehow, in my delusional, dehydrated state, I missed a well marked turnoff and pedaled a mile up a very steep climb. To make a long story short, by the time I got back on track, my 50 mile race with 9.3K of climbing turned into a 52 mile race with about 9.8K of climbing. Final result drum roll please 20th! Yeah baby! Good enough! Had I not gotten lost and factoring in a few DNF's in the front of the field that I know of, I think I may have finished around 12th or 13th.
By the way, Tinker got lost on the first section, passed me at around mile 22 and went on to finish a very hard earned 3rd.
Next up: The full blown 100 miler - August 27, 2005. See www.thee100.com
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