Friday, January 9, 2015

Fat Chance Report - Finally!

Is it seriously Friday already?  This week has flown by at an insane rate and in the midst of all the time in the car, unpacking, attending a 3 day work conference, laundry, repacking and now more time in the car I admit that this crazy life has me feeling a bit scattered and disorganized.

I absolutely LOVE fat bike season.  In fact I’m convinced that I fall in love with this sport just a little bit more with each and every race. This absolutely makes all the time in the car last weekend, time well spent.   

Photo Credit: Laura Webb
Last Sunday was a magical day for me.  It was one of those moments that I can count on a one hand where the world slows down and the cranks seem to turn themselves. 

In every race there is a winner.  But there is also a race experience that is SO MUCH greater than that.  And this experience is the reason that I will always race.  I am drawn to these great events, the passion and the energy that exist.  I am motivated by the friendships I have made and the anticipation of sharing a beer and laughing over crashes, bad starts and freezing water bottles. 

This weekend I spent 30+ hours in the car with a bunch of dudes and between all the farting and Dolan’s impersonations I laughed so hard that my abs muscled ached for at least the next 2 days.  It was so fun that I actually miss it, if that’s even possible. Can you miss an experience?

New Year's Day we arrived at Evan and Grace’s home in Marquette.  These two folks might easily be the nicest people in Marquette and if it wasn’t for them, the trails, and Blackrocks we might not have any reason to visit Marquette.  I was stoked to be treated to popcorn on our first night….just like at the carnival! 

Friday we rode the North Trail system in Marquette and then at dinner Tom ordered rice, bean and sausage dish that had some of the best plate presentation I’ve ever witnessed.
Who is the person that plopped the sausage on here and then said "Yep, This loops good."
Saturday was our trip over to Traverse City which took much longer than I had expected.  We arrived around 6:30 pm and quickly ripped a practice lap on the course with Jason.  I pretended to not be sucking wind behind his wheel; but was also happy to have snappy legs and I remember silently applauding my coach for making some small changes to my training schedule after Solstice Chase! 
Finally Saturday night my teammate Chelsea arrived and we both gleamed with excitement about the race.  The course conditions on Friday were mint however when we woke up Saturday morning we were greeted with a couple of inches of fresh snow!  The course had completely changed.  I was was pretty excited as I had finally set my Sarma rims as tubeless which meant I was really going to be able to take advantage of lower tire pressure.  The temperatures were also dropping  throughout the day and I made the  decision to wear my Wolhammers , which turned out to be the perfect choice! 

I love these boots so much, and I swear I absolutely cannot tell that I am wearing something other than a cycling shoe.  These boots feel warm, snug and powerful!  I know many racers prefer the Fasterkatts when it’s a bit warmer, but usually my preference is the Wolvhammers.  If I had to pick between the two, I'd definitely go with the latter. 
The race was super fun, with a very sloppy and challenging first lap.  I got out to an early lead and was able to hold on the remainder of the race.  Each lap the course conditions became easier and easier as the 100 or so racers paved a nearly single track trail.  What a blast!!   

  Photo Credit: Jody Hofstra 

Huge thanks to Evan, Grace and Jason for their hospitality this weekend.  We love you all and wouldn’t want to spend a race weekend like this any other way.  You are the best.    All of this would also not be possible without the support of so m any of you as well as 45NRTH, SARMA, LAZER, BICYCLE FIT GURU, and COMPEX .  I love being able to race with the best gear and work with the best individuals this industry has to offer.   Lastly the biggest thanks of all goes to Tom, my greatest supporter of all.  He endured a 4 day flu this past weekend and in the midst of all of that managed to be happy, to drive 15 hours, to be supportive and stand out in the cold for 3 hours as I raced a race that he wasn’t able to.  You amaze me, and  I wouldn’t want to do any of this without you.

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