Day 1 is under my belt and I am ready for the long TT up Snow Bowl tomorrow.
Today was about blowing out the lungs via a short TT up Flagstaff’s Mars Hill. The climb leads to an observatory about 3/4 of a mile at an average grade of 9%. It starts out at about 4% and jumps almost immediately to 6% and then 8% within about 100 yards. As you hit the first turn it immediately jumps to 12-14% before tapering off for the finish.
With so many great riders here it wasn’t a surprise that we were all within a second of each other after the first field test, especially since its not long enough to put the big hurt on anyone.
What else is cool is that I found out that of the 24 riders here, about 1/2 have already gone to Europe in the last year for the US National team. I also found out I am the youngest rider here, so that’s kinda of cool. Most riders are at least 17 and more than half just turned 18 this year.
As for my results, I made the top 10 which was somewhat a disappointment for me, but I guess its ok since it was my first effort at altitude.
Tomorrow we head to Snow Bowl which is a long and nasty climb. Its the kind of climb that suits me and now that I blew out my lungs I think I stand a solid chance to crack the top 5. The real truth though is anything less than first is a bit of a disappointment, but with this type of caliber of racers I can’t complain regardless of how I finish I suppose.
As for where the riders all come from I can tell you that 70% are from California the rest are from Arizona and then there’s me from KC. The killer part is these guys tell me that they spend a ton of time training on mountains at altitude which just plain makes me jealous. Could you imagine rolling out to ride and hitting a 15 or 20 mile climb in some of the coolest areas on the planet for your climbing workout?