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Which would be about the Driggs stage race. So as not to incur any harmful suspense, [spoiler! spoiler!] I won the Cat 5s race.

Now that you have all deleted this message, I'll get on with my story. The setting: lovely Driggs, Idaho. A mere 15 miles from the not-quite-so-famous-as-Jackson-Hole-but-always-having-better-snow Targhee ski resort. The Tetons overlook this valley from the east. The valley is named, strangely enough, Teton Valley. In Teton County. Those French trappers would be laughing if they saw all the things around here named after the Big Tits.

First up, at 9am on a beautiful Saturday morning, the time trial. 10 miles, as flat as is possible to find around Driggs. 5 miles out the road towards the Big Hole Not-so-much-of-a-challenge course and back, with a slight uphill gradient on the return. Of course I used the Trialist. Rumble rumble rumble. There are five 5s today, and ten 4s. Looks like about fifteen 1/2s and fifteen 3s. 30 second intervals, I go 4th among the 5s, followed by Super Dave. Rumble rumble rumble. About three miles out I catch my minute man, and a mile later my 30-second man. There is a bend a half mile before the turnaround, and it's into the wind. After the turnaround it's that little uphill. Just enough to drop down one cog. I never see the first 5, because he is way ahead of me. He beats my 22'57" with a 22'03" - also beats all the 4s and some 3s. I beat all the 4s but one, a 22'45". The 1/2/3s aren't that much faster; I think there weren't any times under 21 minutes.

The results are posted pretty soon, then there is nothing to do but hang out in Driggs until the hillclimb at 2pm. This is a mass start hillclimb rather than a TT. So that would be like a road race, up a hill. It's 11 miles, from outside of town to the Targhee parking lot. 1800' claimed elevation gain. I've driven this road many times, but it usually has snow on it then. There are time bonuses (15") for a KOM sprint about two miles from the end, and for the finish.

I'm thinking if I get both those bonuses I will be pretty close to first. So I watch to see who the wonderful time trialist is, and mark him well. (I peed on his bike - no, that would be wrong) Turns out he won this 5s race last year, beating out a field of one: Tom Baird.

The hillclimb starts out slow as we dawdle along the flat couple miles to the hill. Then it picks up, some people blow off the back, most everyone else strings out, and the strongest five guys fight for the win. Well, that pretty much describes every race right there. No need to continue, right? But I will anyway. The strongest five guys lost me during the stringing-out part. Or I prefer to describe it that way, rather than being blown out the back. I perceive the difference as follows: people blown out the back never recover, whereas strung-out persons can chase reasonably well. That's me, a reasonable chaser. I did pass a couple people on the way up, including my teammate Terry and Brian, the 6'7" guy from Jackson - met him at the High Uintas. I encouraged Brian so well that he eventually went off and dropped me, and Terry never got on - he stuck with the pack longer and so was really blown when he did blow. But what of the well-marked time-trialist (also named Brian)? He got blown out the back _before_ the hill, and I after wheezing at the top for a bit I reset my computer and had a gap on him of well over a minute when he arrives. With time bonuses, I am the leader on the road! Woo hoo.

I drive home and fall into bed. 20+45 minutes of workout, and I'm done for the day.

The road race doesn't start until 10am Sunday, so I get to sleep in a little. Woo hoo. Get there a little after nine, and at check in I am shocked to see that I DNF'd the hillclimb! I immediately bring this to the official's attention, with a description of my finish position, and they set to work finding me in their notes and rectifying this most grievous error.

Once again the 4s and 5s start together, with the juniors thrown in. Three more 5s show up just for the RR, along with Tom Baird. It's fairly slow at first (here we go again) but then the juniors jump off the front - they only have to go 40 miles, not 75. A fat guy, the last-place 5, jumps as well. We blow by him on the first hill. I am sitting near the front, but never actually doing any work; is it possible I have learned something from last weekend?

Tom gets bored and attacks on the next several hills, and we shell some people off the back. As we reach the turnaround, we have seen only one pack and the masters coming back - where did the 3's go? Turns out they passed the masters and caught the 1/2s. More attacks after the turnaround, and the only other 5 (now second-place) gets dropped. Tom gets dropped. I get dropped at 15 miles out, and time-trial back to Driggs chasing the 5 leaders, all 4s. Sucks to be me. But I win a nice new $15 seat bag for my trouble, and yell my number out as I cross the finish.

later, hah