Vesrah Brakes Wins at Levis Trow

Our 4th WEMS team race provides drama and excitement for all. The day started quite early with a 2AM departure from the burbs. Ken takes the wheel while I crawl into the back seat and sleep. He wakes me three hours later and I finish up the final 1.5 hours while he sleeps in the back. The storms are brewing as I drive down the road. The lighting is splintering throughout the sky. We arrive and enjoy the great building registration is held in. Mike and Mike show up shortly thereafter and we're off to setting up our site. An hour later Ken is ready to head out on Lap #1. Rain is pouring out the sky, yet the lightning has subsided. He takes the initial lead and works with the lead group for 1/2 of the first lap before fatique sets in a bit. The laps of 25 miles each and alot of hills were tough on everyone. He settles into his groove and finishes strong. I'm the second guy to take off, the rain has stopped, skys are clear and the trails are starting to dry out. I felt better than I have in the past month and finished with a lap I was proud of and inline with where I should be when at my best. The singletrack trails were so nice! The climbs, views, off camber sections, fast rolling singletrack was all I had hoped. The two track was more than I desired, yet the organizes worked hard at creating a balance. Mike Peet was up for lap #3. He was ready for some redemption. He has been coming up to speed quickly with many miles in the saddle lately and inspiring us to keep it going. He felt good the first half of the lap and then the rains came back followed by the hot sun and the harder half of the course. The hills hit him at then end and he pushed to hand over the outcome to Mike Laney. We all fought hard, yet at this point we were 17 minutes behind the lead team. Mike was feeling good and we expected him to finish with a 2:15 time as that would be consistent with his performances throughout the season. We expected him to potentially gain 5 to 10 minutes on the competion. He was off with his target in front of him. He had gained 5 minutes on the leaders by the half way point and was looking good. We suited up and chased him through the woods on a 1/2 mile section. He was flat out moving and we couldn't hold on. He was also banging off trees and still holding it together. We told him we'd meet him a few other times to give him updates. Ken and I went off and rode Toad Road and the IMBA Epic trail Cliffhanger. Those trails are a must do for midwesterners. We know we'd taken too long to see where Mike was, yet were having some much fun and headed to the spot where we were to give him his time differential. Oops, he came through as soon as we'd gotten there. We chased him up the two track, yet I couldn't hold on and we headed to our next spot. We waited 2 miles from the end in the area where people were hurting the most. Many were walking. The team leaders came through walking and we knew we had a slight chance if Mike would get there soon. Sure enough, 1 minute 6 seconds later he comes through and still riding hard. We inform him of the difference and he can do it. He is inspired even more and pushes on through the final climbs to catch the leaders about a mile from the finish. He passes and smokes it to the finish to end with a 2:09:29, 6 minutes better than we expected and the fastest guy among the teams for the day.

Above all, we've been having a great time getting to hang out will all of the series WEM racers this year in all categories. A big thanks to Jason Plansky, the ChainSmokers, N.A.S.T.I. for putting on a great event and working hard at creating a great trail system to ride in.

Pictures Results Press Release #1 Press Release #2

1 comment:

spicyride said...

wow! you guys sure keep it exciting.