I had a great race at Winter Park this past weekend at the Winter Park Mountain Top/Mary Jane Circuit. This course is super fun, with 3 laps at 10,600-11,000ft and fast technical descents, and tough technical climbs. This would be my 3rd XC race under 2hrs this year, everything else was 4.5+hrs.
I started off slow, as I watched the main group of about 20 guys, head in to the first single track ahead of me. I normally like to take off fast at the start, but but usually fatigue quickly and struggle to stay with the leaders after 30 min or so. I didn’t have the speed or desire to go out hard and fast. I keep a steady pace, high zone 3, low zone 4. That was about all I felt I could do.
I slowly started picking off riders in front of me on the first climb. After the top of the last climb before the super long fast decent, I was in 4th place. I battled with Doug Hudson at Feedback sports for this spot all the way down the mountain, and to the finish. He was descending much better them me, he on his hard tail, my on full suspension.
In the long straight away about two miles from the finish, I gave it everything I had, and dropped him to never see him again until the finish. I ended up finishing 4th, with 20 seconds from third and 1.30 from the winner, Doug was 12sec behind me.
I’m looking forward to another short XC race, the King of the Rockies at the end of Aug.