Chain Buster Racing’s website says, “Our biggest race of the year, the Green Gobbler is held at the 1996 Olympic mountain bike venue: the Georgia International Horse Park.” Another course I had never seen or ridden. The week before proved to be a little trying in the Lofgren household. My oldest came down with a pretty serious stomach virus that hit on Thursday evening with a fever and vomiting on Friday. Friday night landed us in a clinic in the evening upon his insisting. I figured I would take him since he was begging to see a doctor. I guess at the age of 7, he was serious though I knew there is not a lot you can do about a stomach virus but just wait it out and use a lot of bleach. We ended up ruling out appendicitis purely out of “just in case” because I knew it was nothing other than one of the -virus (entero-, roto-, adeno-, etc…) but decided to waste a good six hours and sleep that I needed for Saturday. Kids come first.
I ended up with 4.5 hours of sleep which is horrible for me. I knew I was going to be digging super deep and didn’t expect to feel great. I caught a ride down to the venue with a couple of friends and immediately noticed the humidity. I kept with the usual mL/hr of fluid and should have upped it. Hindsight.
I watched the 6 hour people speed off and felt my heart racing before it began. Finally it was our turn, and we were off. I had positioned myself up close to the front only to let fast people pass me in the open field part hoping that I didn’t start out too slow, but I did. I was sluggish. I always go through this self-talk during the start of a race where it is almost like I have to talk myself into continuing and you will settle out. Calm down. Spin. Breathe. Get lost in your music. Go.
I loved the beginning. Flow, and lots of flow. I was able to really let go more than usual and my bike felt like a part of me. This is one reason I really want to find a carbon superfly frame and keep my stuff. I just love the design of the superfly FS. I am so resistant to change! There were two big climbs on each lap, and the first climb was a stinger. My heart rate hit 189, and I almost panicked. I had thoughts of cardiac stress tests and pain. There were always people gathered at the top catching their breaths. It was seriously quite the climb.
The second climb was more open and a stinger in itself.
Every lap magnified the pain more and more on those climbs. I saw a couple huge snakes. The creeks were fun – I would just completely let go as fast as I could go and kind of bomb through them hoping I wouldn’t flat.
I ended up being fairly steady lap to lap but definitely felt I wasn’t 100% healthy this time. I still ended up 1st in Sport 3 hr, and I’ll take that! Chain Busters puts on a great race, and I loved this course so much more than Tribble Mill.