Monday, November 23, 2009

Down but not out.

One of my cyclocross mentors told me a few years ago "in racing sometimes you're the hammer, sometimes you're the nail". This weekend in Lowell I was the nail, and someone was swinging the 10lb. sledge. Going down in a race is never good. But getting my front wheel chopped 100 meters off the start line, sommersaulting onto the turf from a full sprint, and then getting run over by 2 or 3 guys, well lets just say I'm a bit sore right now. And that was the first 2 minutes of the race.

Yes, I did get up. And I chased like a man possessed. I even managed to work my way back to the top half of the field by mid race. But then I had a mechanical, and went down again, twice. I rode slowly around the back half of the course to get my pit bike. And I kept on racing. The best thing I've heard said about Tim Johnson was Richard Fries talking about his comeback at Gloucester in 2007, he said "its not the size of the dog in the fight, its the size of the fight in the dog" I try to remember this when I have a setback in a race. So I was not DFL (although close) and I did not DNF. Almost half of the 35+ field did drop out. No doubt because lots of guys were having trouble staying on the bike.

The trick is to realize that in cyclocross everyone goes down sometime,

flahutes get up and finish,

Champions get up & go faster than everyone else.

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