Friday, September 4, 2015

2015 Leadville Trail 100 MTB Part 1

270 Watts! He averaged 270 watts for 5 Hours:58 minutes. Austrian Alban Lakata broke the Leadville course record with a 5:58:35. J-u-s-t about this time, I was leaving Twin Lakes inbound, with F-O-R-T-Y+ miles and the Powerline climb between me and the red carpet.

Single digit finish. My goal: A single digit finish. In my 3rd attempt at the 103.4 mile, 12,000 ft of elevation, Leadville Trail 100 MTB course, I wanted a single digit finish. I would have settled for a 09:59:59. It could happen.

In 2014, I clocked in with just 5 minutes or less between me and the single digit zone. I had worked hard in the 12 months since that finish, and had confidence in my ability to get the job done.   

In July, I had traveled to Leadville to compete in the Silver Rush 50. While the race starts and finishes in Leadville, just like the 100, Silver Rush shares no part of the 100 course. I raced with my friends John Long and John Bradley. We unanimously agreed that we did not remember the course being so difficult last year. Maybe we're just getting old. 

I think this may have something to do with me feeling like I had been beaten after Silver Rush.

That. Hurt. But I was satisfied having shaved 6 minutes off of my 2014 Silver Rush finish.

In the first half of 2015 I was logging some serious miles with a focus on increasing my total elevation gain in preparation for Leadville.

On Wednesday, August 12th, I arrived in Frisco CO, our base for the race, with my friends John & Cynthia Bradley. We worked out the kinks of travel with a nice 20 mile ride around Dillon reservoir.

Thursday, John's son Jake joined us. Jake was competing in the Leadville Trail 100 MTB as a Leadman competitor. If you want to know more about the insanity that is Leadman, check this out:

John, Jake, and I joined our friend Matt (also competing in the 100 MTB) in Leadville, then headed out to the Pipeline section of the course for a final 15 mile test session. Post ride we headed back to Leadville, done some stretching at Matt's place in town and found lunch locally. I met Alban Lakata near the Leadville Race Series headquarters, introduced myself, and wished him well on the race. Surprisingly enough, he was flesh and blood. And a nice guy to boot.

Friday found us back in Leadville for the racers meeting, and visiting with the awesome group of like minded friends that you meet in racing circles. That evening, we enjoyed a wonderful dinner in the condo (Thanks to Cynthia!) and turned in early. 3:30AM would come all too quickly.  

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