The Ranier High School course is pretty fun. Lots of long sweeping turns and some fast downhill sections. It's also got this GIGANTIC hill that just goes up and UP and UP. I don't like that part very much.
I was hoping to have a better race than last weekend at Alpenrose, along with no mechanical problems. I might have done a little better, but I'm still very sluggish. I'll keep plugging away, hope to keep improving slowly but surely.
As far as my race, I think I started near the middle of the group. I felt pretty good in the start, getting clipped in okay and then really putting the pressure on the pedals. That's when my chain skipped with a load CLUNK. My foot came out of the pedal and I was in the middle of a charging pack straddling my top tube. That sucked. I have a new chain, new cassette and I just aligned the derailleur hanger the other day. Everything was perfect in warm up, so maybe I got something stuck in there just before the start. I don't know why it happened, but I'm glad I didn't crash and get ran over by 30 guys. Sh*t happens.
Anyway, I got going again and saw a huge heard of racers in front of me. I did okay for a while but then started to fade after a few trips up that damn hill.
I had a little crash about half way thorugh the race, and I broke my shifter's brake lever off. Turns out I could still shift okay, but I had no rear brake for the rest of the race. You can see it missing in the photo to the right. Something new to fix!
So I finished the race, and I'm glad I did. That hill didn't get any easier, but there was lots of fun corners and short hills that I needed practice on.
Next week is PIR. It's a little more flat than these first two races, so we'll see what happens.
Photo courtesy Shift Focus