2013 Rumble @ 18 Road—XC & STXC
If you’ve ever been to the desert trails in Fruita, then you have the mental picture that characterized this race, dust and wind. Despite the elements, I was happy to be on home turf back in Colorado, and to be racing the same course that I did in the fall for Collegiate MTB Conference Championships. My category 1 field started 2 minutes behind the pro field, and I had a deja vu moment from earlier on in the season at True Grit. For the first 20 minutes of the race we gradually climbed our way up undulated trails on a mix of fairly smooth double and single track to the base of the foothills. I found myself sitting third wheel in the lead group of 3 as we approached the first of three back-to-back climbs that were rather steep and loose. About halfway up the first both my competitors came off their bikes and I rolled by. I hadn’t planned on going off the front this early on in such a fast race, but after I realized I had built a significant gap over the other two riders by cleaning all three of the climbs I decided to play it to my advantage and try to bridge up into the pro field. Within minutes I passed the stragglers from the pro race before the end of the first lap. In the second lap I focused on riding especially clean and efficient. About 10 minutes into the third lap I noticed the guy in 2nd place had rode back onto my wheel with the help of two pro riders, who quickly dropped off once he got to me. I let him take over and set the pace for the next 10-15 minutes, remembering we were quickly approaching those 3 steep climbs. Fortunately for me, he came off his bike again on the first one and I was able to make it up all three. This put me in a 30-45 second lead as we entered the last section of the course where I was just about spun out of my gears at close to 30 mph. I managed to catch a middle of the pack PRO/FLC rider, which gave me some relief and allowed me to build on my lead. I came through the finish line a narrow 41 seconds in front 2nd place and 7:00 minutes in front of 3rd. Sunday’s short track looked to be a less competitive field than on Saturday, so at the start of the 2nd lap I made my attack and was able to lap the field. Two more wins in the books for Colavita SW Cycling!!!