Written by Teddy Homer Wednesday, 09 October 2019 00:00
I get nervous before the first race every year, but after the whistle blows, it's instantly gone and when it's over, I'm eager for the next race.
The course at Deer Farm CX in West Newfield is a great way to break that ice: fun and challenging, and this year it was fast and dry with plenty of dirt and dust to cling to sweat.
There are slight berms, a couple of sand pits, a BMX-y thing early on in the course, and at the bottom of a snaky decent from the run-up, a pain-in-the-ass trudge on a slow trail for a bit in the woods, at least two sets of barriers, and some stone stairs. Watch it here.
I was staged in back after two mechanicals in two races last season set me back a bunch (chain fell off more than once in one race and glue finally failed after five years on my front tire in the next race), but this year, with a new drivetrain and front tire, I was able to pick off a few guys, especially on the run-up, which starts with a bunny-hop-able log at the base of the hill. One of my "victims" on the run-up shouted something like "dah!!" as I passed him running up the hill. Earlier in the course, one of them just said "I'm tired" and let me pass on a corner.
The event itself features food with deer meat from the farm and deer meat you can buy and bring home, along with locally-brewed beer: Gneiss from Limerick, which is superb.
This race is a great early-cross season race. It's a hard sport to catch up in if you've fallen behind, and especially if the rest of your life has gotten in the way, but it's possible. I'll take 18 out of 27 for now.
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