Two words: not fun. Rain, wind, cold, these are not the ingredients of a well-executed bike race (must get those good-weather requests in earlier!). I had the normal round-the-block ride under my belt, but not enough training miles in the aforementioned rain, wind, cold - why would I want to do something like that?
Exactly the question I was asking on the start line that fine Saturday in September. Being that it was still before 7am, it was dark, and as a bonus about 40 degrees and raining. Dave showed up to say that he would not be racing today. Can't hardly blame him for that. I rode down to Logan with Jim Smith, giving my GTI a break from support-crew duties. My support-crew personnel would consist of a nice lady I had never met before named Cathy, from Kim Eddy's workplace. Got to start looking for crew earlier!
The start was in the USU stadium parking lot as opposed to the customary bike shop on Main, so a little detour was in order as we began the race. Nobody else was in a big hurry, either. As it rained for the next three hours and didn't get much warmer, I got good and wet and not very warm. Jim, riding with the citizens, called it a day at the first feed zone, his first Lo-to-Ja attempt ending after 60 miles. Not the most fun 60 miles, either.
But then it gradually stopped raining, leaving only the wind and cold. Still, I was pretty much dropped from the lead group of 4s after the second feed zone, well before my normally scheduled OTB at Tin Cup. I got to ride alone into the wind even before Tin Cup. Whoopee. Did manage to catch a woman (they started with the 4s) and she wisely latched on to my wheel.
I paused to get rid of some wet clothes at the third feed zone (base of Tin Cup) and she went on ahead. Rolling down the other side, I caught up to her and a couple other guys. It's still windy and not especially warm, by the way.
After Alpine I started up the canyon with a small group, but got dropped on the little rollers and was fortunate enough to ride by myself some more. Past Hoback, a group caught me and I hung on to them. It was a mixed bag, consisting of a tandem, a couple 3s, 4s, masters, and a woman. Pretty leisurely ride until one bozo started to actually sprint towards the finish. Well, I was rested enough that I could go after him and catch him, so I did and I did. Won that little sprint, making my time 10:38', yow an all-time record for wind-unaided.
Jim had an extra bed in his hotel room there at the Village so I helped myself to that and the luke-warm (not hot) tub out on the deck. After a fine dinner at the Mangy Moose I promptly sacked out, long day in the saddle and all.
Not much of a reason to attend awards the next day, but I did snag a keychain and sunglasses holder or two. 14th out of 19 4s who finished.