A Day For Heroes; A Day For Fools
Congratulations to all the Vic's Espresso/Peerless riders who put on hard and smart riding clinics on their way to podium finishes, and especially to the new rock owners Julia Wieck (Women's 45+) and Lars Bosch (Men's 65+)! In contrast, I put on a hard and dumb riding clinic, finding a brand new mistake to make after all these years of racing! Heeding a last minute call of nature while waiting for the 45+ Open Men's last wave start, I emerged from my contemplation just in time for the race to go off in front of me right on time at 11:45. I quickly jumped on my bike, sprinted up the street, and headed out of town on the back of the group.
Just outside Mead, another 45+ racer said "Dude, we're in the wrong race!" Looking ahead, all I could see were 400 series #'s; only my companion and I had 200 series. He convinced me that we'd started ahead of the final 45+ wave, so we quickly turned around and sprinted back into town, only to find a deserted start area. We were quickly informed that "you boys are chasing", and my heart sank as we started a desperate two-man TT in the vain hope of catching back up. The brutal headwind suggested otherwise, and we tried to settle in for the long haul. However, I flatted my rear at the end of the second dirt section, and was quickly all alone in last place.
I rode the rest of the lap on my flat clincher (not fun on the third dirt section), grabbed my spare rear from my car, and headed back out for an extremely long and lonely final two laps. I did manage to catch and drop one 45+ racer during the last lap to avoid the dubious "Red Lantern" mark of shame. I never did find out what happened at the start line; perhaps they shifted the start order and I didn't get the memo. Hey, if you're going to lose, lose big!