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2008-08-30 - BC Cup Finals - Mt. Washington - Race Day

The bunch of us woke up this morning, had breakfast and headed to the chair lift. It was cold, but the sun was shining and there were no clouds in sight. It might actually be a sunny race at Mt. Washington. Lift opened at 10am, but it took sometime for the coure marshals to get into place, and as such practice started around 10:30am. There was a long practice today, until 12:30pm, so I wanted to get in three well spaced practice runs. I knew my lines from yesterday and wanted to focusing on increasing my speed throughout the course. My first run was a warm up, check out the course run. The course felt exactly the same as yesterday, still wet, but drying up a little from yesterday. I planned to pin in it into a couple sections on my second practice lap and wound over cooking just about every section I tried pushing in. The course was so difficult the judge, and if you tried to push too hard you stood a good chance of loosing a large amount of time. After a high speed, out of control, crash over a burm I sat out for a bit, took a rest, and after 30 minutes went for my final practice run. I nailed all my lines fast and smooth, and worked out all my shifting points. Tires felt great, suspension was dialed perfectly, and the whole bike seemed to be working perfectly.

While eating lunch at the condo I noticed some weather starting to move in. I could see it was raining across the valley, and the rains seemed to be moving closer all the time. By the time I was got ready and headed out the door there were a coulpe drops of rain falling. I went and chatted with the Master Expert guys about how their runs went, and headed for the chair. By the time I got on the chair lift it was raining heavily. At the top it was bitterly cold, and there were snow flakes mixed in with the rain. Within a 15 minute period of time we saw fog, sun, wind, rain and snow. I couldn't wait for my start time and get going down the hill.

I knew the course was likely changing, especially in the open sections, from the rain. I knew I was going to have to read the conditions carefully in every corner. I left the top and nailed my first couple lines fast and smooth. I got a little off line coming over the rock bluff, but stayed off the brakes, and nailed the tough right hander that followed by braking early and being conservative with my entrance speed. I pinned it into the first woods section, I had felt comfortable through the mess of roots all week-end and nailed my lines. I got tossed sideways just before the exit, unclipped, and railed the turn coming out of the woods. I got clipped back in and headed for the S-Bend under the chair. In the sweeping right hander I noticed 2 big rocks had been kicked into the line, so I had to corner up high and in doing so got tossed into the bars by a stump. I had a big bar hump, but managed to stay on and keep momentum into the next flat section. I pedalled hard and entered the next woods on my usual line. I was conservative through the first new section, but the lines were exactly as they had been in practice. I aired the rock drop, and sprinted for the last woods. I nailed the last woods section fast and smooth, and kept to all my lines. I got bucked a little coming out of the woods onto the ski run, but stayed off the brakes, and hammered for the finish. The mud had clogged up my cassette so it took a couple pedal strokes to clear the mud before I could really put the power down. I crossed the finish line knowing that I had a good run, but that I had made a number of small mistakes. Once the mud had settled Steve Chan beat us all with a 3:42. Dean Tennant came second with a 3:46 and I placed third with a 3 minute 49 second time.

I was stoked with the third place, and knew it would help my Overall BC Cup Standing. Bryon Enns narrowly beat John (by 0.04 seconds) to take 1st for the Provincials and 1st in the Overall Standings. Brian Brittain won his category to be 2008 Provincial Champion as well as wrap up the Overall Standings with 4 straight wins. Gordo came 5th in Master 40-49 and Kat came 4th in Elite Women. Awards soon followed, which were pretty roudy. Thanks to Cycling BC for providing an awesome lunch / dinner that consisted for a burger, a drink and a bag of chips! From awards we went back to the condo and had a good 4 or 5 rounds of Monster Miles before heading to the bar. After many drinks at the bar, and much laughter we headed home.

2008 BC Cup Finals - Mt. Washigton - Results

A picture of me during practice this morning - Photo by George Porteous

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