My first National Tour is now in the books!
All and all, the weekend went fairly well. My only real complaint was the weather and not being able to eat lunch on Saturday. When it comes to mother nature, she always wins. And the lunch thing, that was a misunderstanding, but no big deal. It worked out as Dennis and I found a great Chinese restaurant in Patterson.
My co-driver Dennis was able to be at Crows Landing for all three days. He was able to attend Friday to tech and walk. That was super helpful for me as I wasn’t able to make the trip out to the site Friday evening. Instead of making a trip out, I ended up preparing for Saturday and Sunday. I bought water, chips, cookies, and various other supplies, as well as getting everything ready and packed so that we would have a smooth departure Saturday morning.
Dennis ended up deciding to drive to the event for each day. He arrived at my place at 6AM and we promptly loaded up and departed. Once we arrived, I immediately checked in and walked the course. After walking the course, we set up “camp” in the paddock. This was our little hang-out/nap spot for the weekend. The canopy and coolers were invaluable and I am glad that we were able to make arrangements.
The runs for day 1 were tough. My runs were… 64.2xx, 64.5xx, and 64.0xx. I felt like my second and third runs were better than my first, but wasn’t able to improve. The clock doesn’t lie. The course was definitely challenging. I felt like there was a lot of technical elements. Not really quite sure how to describe the day 1 course. I didn’t think the course was bad or horrible. I actually liked it. However, my results were frustrating. Each run, I tried to push harder and each run, the times were about the same. It seemed that a lot of people were struggling though. The class leaders’ best runs were their first for day 1.
Day 2’s run was a lot of fun. I didn’t feel like it was as technically challenging as day 1. It was definitely a little more open and flowing, and I felt like the course allowed competitors to really go fast. I was very pleased with the times I put down for day 2. My run was a 63.xxx (+1), 60.4xx (+1), and 59.495. Despite my first and second runs being dirty, I didn’t let that deter me from pushing harder on the third run. After day 1 and being quite a bit behind the leading group, I came up with the game plan to really push on day 2. The gap after day 1 was going to be nearly impossible to close. My intent was to not so much to be reckless, but rather use my time to learn and improve. I wanted to see how fast of a time I could put down. The likelihood of hitting cones was high, and I might hit a few cones, or DNF, but we learn more from your mistakes than from your successes. I was lucky enough that my third run came out clean. I thought I put down a dirty run, as I felt the “cone bump” in one of the rear corners, but the run was clean. May I got lucky and just wiggled it.
All and all, it was a great weekend. I placed 10th out of 16. Not too bad at all.
Here are my runs from this weekend: