View From the Back of the Pack – Pre-ride

I have a post about the race in Kelowna that I’m currently working on but the video editing is taking much longer than expected.  Honestly, I’m cutting out all of the walking I did up climbs mid-timed section as to not bore you all to death and there’s a lot of them.  In the meantime, Ryan and I are off to another race back in Kamloops.

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Car is packed and ready to roll!

This time we’ll be racing on Harper Mountain (another new one for us both) and when the course was released it actually looked okay.  I mean, anything looks okay compared to Vedder.  So, despite my concern for my body giving out from riding too much, we headed up for a pre-ride today to check out what we were up against.

Honestly, I’m not going to say much about the actual course because I’ll cover that in the race write up.  What I want to say is concerning the pre-ride itself and how iffy a situation it is.  If you’re a seasoned, advanced rider it’s kind of a no brainer if they’re new trails for you.  You’ll get an idea of what’s to come and get to have a bit of fun while you’re doing it.  You certainly won’t wear out your body or — gasp! — come across shit that looks so scary you figure you should probably just volunteer as a marshall instead of riding the race.

Naturally, those are the things that happened to me today and I’m feeling a little torn on the pre-riding front.  I’ll be more solid tomorrow morning on if I knackered my body too much or not, but as far as the nerves are concerned I went through a whole rainbow of emotions when I was out there today.

Firstly, it was great to get an idea of the climb.  Mostly because it wasn’t terribly horrific and it gave me hope that I may actually finish a full course race tomorrow.  Secondly, I honestly do believe that it’s fantastic to get a look at what’s coming up the next day in a more relaxed environment but when what’s coming up is some terrifying bumpy rocks and loose loose loose terrain it starts falling into the “scaring Sarah off” category.  We made it up and did all of stage one.  The beginning of stage one is pretty scary to be honest.  The whole first section is.  I spent quite a bit of time hiking a bike thinking “oh boy I definitely should see if they still need volunteers for tomorrow.  I can’t do this at all.”  The good news is, the trail continued and turned into some fast, fun, flowy stuff that was a blast.  I spent the whole bottom half grinning from ear to ear.

There was also some official fun to be had as they had some tents set up and a grass slalom race to watch.  Ryan tried his hand at the $100 but unfortunately fell in the middle of the pack.

I saw this as a bonus, steep hike a bike with a huge audience watching you come down and decided my time was best spent in the beer tent and waiting for the food truck to open so I could get some deep fried Mars bars.

Overall I feel like pre-riding is a great thing to do.  Honestly, for quite a while today I thought that all it did was make me chicken out but tomorrow I’ll feel much more confident having at least an idea of what’s coming up – – and what I have to walk down.

Keep an eye out for the Kewlona blog as well as the follow up on how I do in Kamloops take two!