Tag matt boobar

A Somewhat Surprising Finish



Going into a race, there are many feelings that flow through my body. Some races have me nearly wetting my pants I get so excited. New races bring the excitement and anxiousness of unknown possibilities. While others have me dreading the inevitable pain I will put myself through. The XTERRA USA Championship in Ogden, UT is mostly the latter. It can be hard to get motivated when you know the suffering that is to come, but finally by Friday morning before the race, I found it.

Hitting the trails that morning for the final pre ride with CraigBoobsLuke, and Branden must have done the trick. The colors were absolutely amazing at that time of year with orange, red, yellow, and a few green leaves creating a colorful kaleidoscope surrounding the smooth single track of Snow Basin. We laughed as much as we pedaled and by the end of it, I found the mental state I needed to be in to have a good race.

 

On race morning, I was super duper mega excited to finally get to race in my BlueSeventy Helix wetsuit. So many of the races have been non wetsuit swims for the pros this year, that my speed suit saw way more action than my wettie. I figured if this suit was good enough for theCaveman, it’s good enough for me. I’ve never owned a suit quite like this and I was so excited to finally see it in action.

Despite the fact that I got absolutely pounded during the first couple hundred meters (Those Brits are rough), I kept my mind focused and had my best swim to date. How do I know it was my best? I’ll tell you. I base all of my race swims off of the lead swimmers. That way there is no wondering if the course was short or long. I was either slow or not. And that day, I was not.

As I sped through transition and hopped onto my bike, I was a little confused. “What are you doing back here?!?” I thought to myself as I surveyed my competition. Then I realized “Holy crap! They aren’t back here. I’m up there!”

I wish I could say that my bike performance made me just as happy as my swim, but it just wasn’t my day. I wasn’t slow, but I wasn’t stellar either. The legs weren’t feeling it on the bike, so I settled into a comfortable groove on the uphills and tried to absolutely rip the descents. I’m still not sure exactly how they knew, but my legs told me that they could run fast that day. With that in mind, I kept calm and collected as I was caught by a few guys and passed a few on the bike.

Then came my moment to shine. As we hit T2 and blasted through, the field was completely stacked on top of each other. 12th place through 6th exited T2 about 1 minute apart from each other. I felt comfortable and more importantly confident in my abilities as we dashed off into the woods. I started picking them off one by one and with less than 2 miles of straight downhill to go, I caught the last two guys I knew were catchable (Ryan Ignatz and Cody Waite). I surged and the smile on my face grew.

I fought off the cramps in every leg muscle I had (and a few I didn’t know about until later) and was able to keep my lead on those two and crossed the line in 7th place. I was a bit surprised I was able to do that! My coach, my girlfriend, and fellow racers had all said they knew I could do it, but I didn’t quite believe it until I did it. What an amazing feeling! And with that finish I was able to maintain my 6th place ranking in the USA Pro Points Series for 2012. Yippie!

It was time to celebrate! So what did we do? Learn to surf sounds like a fun idea!?! I’d never surfed behind a boat before, so it seemed like time to try it out.

Surfing that afternoon and a giant piece of chocolate cake that night was about the craziest celebration you can expect in Utah, but I certainly wasn’t complaining. All and all, what a great way to end the off-road season.

A huge thanks to TimexRudy ProjectPowerBarHoly Crapmix1, and my newest sponsor Peak Performance Acupuncture for all the support that helped to make the culmination of my XTERRA season a huge success!

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Interview with Endurance Hour



This past week I did a podcast interview with the guys over at Endurance Hour. Dave Erickson and Roger Thompson chatted with myself and fellow XTERRA pro Emma Garrard. We chatted about Lance Armstrong, on road vs off road racing, sponsors and what it means to be a professional triathlete, and much more. Click the image below to listen…





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The ULTIMATE TransRockies Experience (1of4)



This year I attempted to do something no one has ever done before – finish both of the TransRockies events in the same year. Doesn’t sound like to difficult of a feat, but when you start adding the numbers its rather brutal.  In the next few blogs (4 to be exact), I’ll give you the down & dirty details of my 13 days of racing this past August.


 The mountain bike race had over 39,000 ft of climbing across 240 miles in 7 days. We started in Fernie, British Columbia and finished in Canmore, Alberta. My Timex teammate, Matt Boobar, and I represented Sugoi and Timex as we battled our way to several podium finishes and a 5th place overall in the GC in the rainy Canadian Rockies.

 

 

The running race, though it may sound a short in comparison, was just as hard if not harder! My partner, Amber Monforte, and I had originally planned to podium  every day and in the overall GC, but as we started the 6 day, 125 mile race that would eventually lead us over 21,000 ft of climbing, we quickly realized that was a lofty goal.

 

 

The TransRockies Mountain Bike Race – Stage 1

Stage 1 was slightly different from the upcoming stages because it was a time trial start. After acquiring UCI licenses the day before (it took us nearly 5 hours to get all of our registration sorted), we were seated to start at 2:08pm. As we sat in our hotel room on day 1, we watched the rain dump down on the athletes out on the course. We fully expected to be riding the whole time in the mud and end up coming back looking like the bikes in this pic (see my clean pre-race bike). Luckily for us, the rain stopped just as we rolled to the start line. The ride was a rough one with Matt riding strong the first half and pulling me, and then me taking the lead and pulling the 2nd half. It was only 29k, but it took us 2 hours, 27 minutes to end up crossing the line in 7th. I made the comment to Matt that this was the first race that I had ever worn Chamois Butter for and it felt like I had diarrhea in my shorts the whole ride. Fun stuff!

All and all it wasn’t a bad first day. We finished 7th overall and 5th for the UCI teams. This is important to note because even though we were concerned with our overall placing each day, the prize money was only distributed to the UCI teams.  

The pic below is all the data from stage 1 that I gathered with my Timex GPS Global Trainer. If you haven’t seen the Global Trainer, you are missing out! This thing is freaking awesome. It is super customizable and incredibly easy to use. I set mine up for the race so that on one screen I could see distance, overall time, elevation, and heart rate. The only thing I think it is missing is a windsheildwiper. Matt and I covered ours in mud from the get go!



Day 1 data from my Timex GPS Global Trainer


The TransRockies Mountain Bike Race – Stage 2

After spending hours packing, figuring out what to wear on what day, and getting all our nutrition sorted out for 6 days, we were ready to head off to the start line. As you can see from our lists below we favored the custom Timex cycling kits by Sugoi. It was really fun to look so sharp.

 

What better way to start the day, then to do a little breaking & entering in your own hotel. I accidentally locked the keys in the room and there was absolutely no one around. I mean no one! We looked everywhere and tried calling for help, but to no avail. So I figured I’d put my swimmer shoulders to use and “lightly” pushed them against the hotel room door. That thing shattered like a squirrel under a semi. Bam! Problem solved.

Stage 2 was the first “real” start we had for the race. The entire field lined up and launched into action to the tune of Highway to Hell by ACDC. We hammered up a long dirt road to start things off with our performances being the opposite of yesterday. I was working to keep Matt with the pack and not blow up myself at the same time. We reached the top of the climb and got to do one of the funnest, steepest, brake heating descents I have ever done! I blasted down the entire thing only having to get off during the final 100 meters because it was absolutely unrideable! And they said that couldn’t be done! Ha!

At the bottom, we have our first minor set back. Matt got a massive chunk of weeds stuck in his cassette during our insane descent. Just a few minutes to dig it all out and we were back on track. As I mentioned earlier, our day shaped up to be somewhat the opposite of the previous day. As we sped along the single track and dirt roads towards the finish, I was hurting. Matt pulled almost the whole time and we crossed the line the exact same as yesterday – 7th overall and 5th for the UCI teams.

 




 The TransRockies Mountain Bike Race – Stage 3

Our first podium finish! 2nd overall on the day! Holy cow! It didn’t come without a few set backs, but we were quick on our feet and even quicker on our bikes!

Stage 3 started with a long road section (nearly 40k) that was a bit hairier than I would have thought. With over 300 mountain bikers packed together on our parade around town and then quickly funneled onto a short single track, there were several crashes. Matt and I stayed clear of those and worked our way up to the front pack til check point one. The lead pack of ~60 turned into two smaller packs of around 20 and 40. We were in that 2nd pack of 40. As we approached check point two, the group thinned out and we were psyched to hit some single track. That’s when we hit our first problem.

Just minutes after check point two, I snapped my derailleur clean off. Luckily it was just the derailleur hanger that broke, so Matt jumped in and quickly converted my bike to a single speed. We had to lock out the rear suspension so as not to snap the chain (when the rear suspension activates, it changes the chain stay length and can put enormous load on the chain causing it to break), and that left me with a leg burning, rough ride for the rest of the day. Check out the spot right in the middle of the data below where the red line drops. That was us stopping to fix my broken bike.



We used our triathlete legs to fly up the long climb to the Continental Divide (nearly 5k of hike-a-bike), and work our way to 4th place overal. As we ripped down the descent on the other side, team positions went nuts! We leapfrogged from 2nd to 5th. Back and forth, back and forth. Everyone was having mechanicals and flats, and it was a game of who could fix them the fastest and the most efficiently.

The last few miles into the finish would have been quite comical to watch because up to this point the grade had been steep enough up or down that I could either run, or ride without peddling. Those last few miles were just flat enough I couldn’t do that. I was doing my best to hang onto Matt’s casual pace as I pedaled over 110 rpm. My legs were spinning as fast as I could, but when you’re in the wrong gear there is only so much you can do. I kept looking over my shoulder expecting to see the fully geared teams come up on us, but we had put enough of a gap on them coming down from the Continental Divide, that we held on for 2nd overall (and 2nd in the UCI teams)! Woohoo!!!


 To hear all the rest of the details from TransRockies Mountain Bike Race, check back for the next installment of


The ULTIMATE TransRockies Experience

 

 

 

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TransRockies Mountain Bike Race



We have limited internet access, so my blogs will be short for the time being. I’ve got lots of video from the Go Pro Camera and great data from my Timex GPS Global Trainer that will have to be uploaded at the end of this wicked gnar gnar race! So here we go…

After spending my birthday with my dad and brother fishing in the mountains of Idaho, I made my way to Whitefish, MT to pick up fellow Timex athlete Matt Boobar. On Saturday we made a b line for the border and luckily made it through uninterrupted.



We arrived in Fernie and went straight to registration to get things rolling. Through a bit of a mix up our race plates were not totally ready for our bikes, so we had to hand write them in. Seven was our team number, but 007 sounds so much cooler, so it stuck. We ended up picking up UCI licenses for the race so that we would be eligible for prize money. It turned into a bit of a fiasco, but after several hours we were all set to race and crush it (we hoped!).


The day of stage 1 it poured down rain constantly. We fully expected to be riding the whole time in the mud and end up coming back looking like the bikes in this pic. Luckily for us, the rain stopped just as we rolled to the start line. The ride was a rough one with Matt riding strong the first half and pulling me, and then me taking the lead and pulling the second half. It was only 29k, but it took us 2 hours, 27 minutes to end up crossing the line in 7th. I made the comment to Matt that this was the first race that I had ever worn Chamois Butter for and it felt like I had diarrhea in my shorts the whole ride. Fun stuff!

That was only the beginning of the race! We’ll keep posting when we can, but will have all our adventures in full at the end of the race. Make sure to check out the Timex Team and Sugoi Facebook pages for more updates along with the Timex Team Blog.

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