Quite surprisingly I was an XC race virgin until the weekend when due to the convenience of a race being right near the inlaws I decided to try one out which happened to be round one of the national XC series at Codham. I was in the open cat as I didn’t have a race licence and didn’t want to fork out for one for this one race. Potential for sandbagging then but there was enough team Lycra around on the start line to tell me that wasn’t the case at the sharp end of things.
To to get my money’s worth out of the one hour race I did a couple of practice laps to warm up. The course included a mix of bumpy grassy fields mixed in with some drops, tight woody bits and a bmx track! The climbs were very short and sharp cramp enducers.
The sport race set off a minute in front but with the grid system of these sorts of races I started at the back of the small field. Not wanting to get stuck at the start of the singletrack I immediately redlined to get towards the front which was obviously going to take its toil, particularly as strong winds meant an easier ride for those drafting. After the initial enthusiasm I dropped back in to third and rode then on my own for the whole race. I managed to catch a fair few people in the sport cat but they had an extra lap to do so no prizes there.
After some fairly bad leg pains from fatigue recently requiring ongoing sports massage to revive them I was surprised to have managed the efforts ok despite feeling like I have no kick in the legs at the moment. Really enjoying the new bike and and I hope I will get faster as I get to know it better.