Looks like after 2 races in the root66 series I'm now the series leader. I was in this position last year after Winsted woods and decided not to contest. I will not be contesting this year either. That series is brutal. With the points going 10 deep and only 5 points separating most positions it's the hardest series to win. No dropped races in this series means you'll be full bore into the fall, traveling all over New England. Often the men or women who go for it (after winning) never make it back the following year. Not cool.....
Winding trails is a drag race. Start is fifty yards on hard pack then right into a sand pit. I got pushed off the good line and ended up on the right. Good thing since on the left there was a crash tangling up at least a few riders allowing me to get to about 15th place, a good spot on this fast and largely untechnical course. Working my way through the field on the first lap I can see Sean Cavanaugh and Johan Koserius (both of Bethel Cycle) ahead. I bridge to them and hardly pausing set my eyes on John Foley (GF29er crew). Foley is a very consistent rider and normally he is a great wheel to follow but on this course the dual suspension seems to be hurting him. Looking past Foley I can see Harmon in the lead group about fifty yards ahead and slowly work my way up to him. He's drilling it and not backing off much so it takes me the better part of the whole lap to close the fifty yards. I caught James when he took the smoother but longer line going into the second lap. Sitting on James wheel I was feeling good and started to think of bridging up to 3rd place Kevin Hines (Favata and Matt O'Keefe had checked out never to be seen again) so going into a small piece of singletrack I took the lead. Chasing Kevin Hines for about a lap. Bridging slowly but surely I catch him and in about a half of lap he's dispatched off the back. Going into the 5th lap I start to feel my cadence on my trusty 35x16 is starting to slow on the power climbs. James is coming hard and with less than 3 miles to go I just put my head down and grunt it out, Finishing 3rd place.
Anyone who says Winding trails is a easy race has no idea what they are talking about, My average heart rate was 2 beats below threshold (bleeding through my eyes)and I could have gone no harder. Someone once said "If the course is so easy, Let me see you win." True that, message board man..
With Jane winning the women's race and most notably Jim winning the expert SS in a sprint it was good day all around. Chris also won his class at Tour De Tykes. Congrats to my friends and training partners. It's shaping up to be a good year.
Jim, Top step of the podium..Sweetness