Ken wins three in a row! He’s putting a beat down on the other clydesdales. I would have included another podium pic of him, but I’m trying to avoid too much redundancy, even if he isn’t. Instead, in his place, is a baby. We’ll get to that.
Today was Guyot. Big and bad, again. Long epic climbs to over 12,000 feet, straight into the clouds. No kidding. The trail went right into a big rain cloud. It was cold and wet and ominous. Despite that, Ken had another good day. He’s in good shape for the overall lead. He gets to wear the minty green race leader’s jersey, just like Jeremiah Bishop. It’s the Breck Epic’s version of the yellow jersey, except it’s minty (as Mike describes it). That’s how the Epic rolls.
Me? At least I made it to the start on time today. My legs were feeling tired, so I ended up walking most of the climb up French Gulch over Guyot. By the time I got over the top, I was wet and cold, and I couldn’t see anything because of all the rain on my glasses, which are prescription, so I couldn’t take them off, or I really couldn’t see anything. My hands were numb, my rims and V-brakes were wet and useless, and it was all I could do to keep from falling off the backside of the mountain. My eyes were all teared up and I had a death grip on the brakes to squeeze whatever I could out of them, so I couldn’t wipe away the double barrel snot running down my face. A couple times, as the snot was dripping off my chin, I tried to blow away the trails that traversed my lips. I only succeeded in blowing the snot straight onto my glasses, further obscuring my vision. Crying, snot streaming out of my nostrils, tired, demoralized. So yeah, that pic above pretty much sums up how I was feeling at that point. For those who can’t read Chinese, the quote says,”Oh F_CK! I’m going to die on top of a goddamn mountain with snot bubbling out of my nose!”
Oh, and my fork was worth a load of shite. On the way there, I noticed that my shock was already at half mast. After the first bump, I was back to about 10mm of travel. As the day wore on, I was left with about 5mm, which is pretty much useless. Any little bump bottomed it out. Turns out that an O-ring is busted, and there’s no fixin’ it for the Epic. So I’m going to ride the fork locked out. Fully rigid. Good times ahead.
Despite all that, I still finished in 8th place, again. It’s still my lot in life. Peter, from Misfit Pscycles, took a hard fall on a descent that I chickened out on and walked. He’s banged up, and he cracked his helmet. Hope he is able to ride tomorrow.
Tomorrow is a new stage for the Epic. Aqueduct. Mike says that it’s harder than today. Oh lovely. 42 miles, around 7400 feet of climbing.