#CXNats. Austin Mud Fest.

Photo Credit: Ted Arnold. Quesoclub.com.

What happened at the Cyclocross National Championships in Austin, TX last weekend is already old news. I'm hoping the fallout isn't too bad and that it'll serve as a learning opportunity for all the entities involved. I'm not adding my two cents to what happened, as I'm in no position to speculate or judge. Fortunately for the team, the Stan's NoTubes race support super-crew, Kenny and Jimbo, were on hand with the race rig and we had some accommodating hosts located just a few minutes away from Zilker Park. So our circumstances were flexile and the extra day wasn't too drastic of a burden, financial or otherwise. 

But there is one thing I want to clear up: MY BACK IS NOT INJURED! Apparently, a certain commentator mentioned a non-existent back injury on more than one occasion. I was slow on my feet, a klutz, and in no way prepared to run through sticky, thick mud carrying a bike laden with more mud to the base of a monstrous run-up that pretty much required some basic mountaineering experience to scale; but I was not injured. Last October I had a spill where I injured a knee. I rested and recovered and have been back training for quite some time.

In fact, I flew to Austin pretty confident in my ability to be in the race. I was apprehensive about the weather forecast but I know I can handle a bike and I usually enjoy a technical challenge. The conditions on race day were just a little too thick and sticky for me and I spent quite a bit of time off the bike, which isn't good. In fact, the last time I ran that much was back in 2013 when I last ran a 5k (and I got beat by a 12-year old that day, for perspective on my running). So, I don't believe in excuses. I raced hard. I made a lot of mistakes. I was unprepared and under-trained for the demands of the race course and the best I could do was 23rd place.

Photo Credit: Ted Arnold.  Quesoclub.com

Photo Credit: Ted Arnold. Quesoclub.com

Bad races are never loses. I learned quite a bit about preparation and equipment and even had a few braaaap! moments during the race that were just straight up fun. And it's always good to see old friends and catch up with industry partners. 

Now I'm back in Tucson and settling back into full-time training mode. While it's hard to re-adjust to the traffic around town, the backdrop of the Catalina Mountains never gets old and the occasional warm day is revitalizing. 

Thanks for checking in and...pedal on!


Photo: Ted Arnold. Quesoclub.com.

There is no doubt that these trees are worth protecting. But there was better a way than what went down last Sunday: old-fashioned dialogue and compromise. 

Posted on January 14, 2015 and filed under Cyclo-cross.