Friday, May 22, 2009

Draper ICUP Pre-ride

I don't think I like how these cranks bolt on. The XTR set up is much more secure and easier to check.
It's not much, but I haven't put any pics in lately and this is the best I could do. The skin gap between the red lines is the zone of protection my chest strap afforded me. HR monitors ARE important and can save your skin. Kids, never leave home without your helment or HR strap :-)

Taking Keith Paynes advise, I decided to pre-ride the Draper course in preparation for the Monday ICUP XC race. I've never raced this venue because I've been at the Ironhorse Classic in Durango Co the last 2 years racing the choo choo train and snow. Since I am mad at the IH race directors handeling of the 2008 event, I'm not going to Durango this year and will give Ed my money instead.

I saw Bob Saffel Wednesday on the Shoreline Trail and he was showing off his road rash from his Draper pre-ride and I didn't think much about it. He warned me it was loose and several tight corners on the Ghost Falls trail come up pretty fast, so be careful. Always listen to people with road rash.

My ride started out nicely with Aaron Smith leading the way through the revamped starting loop, through the tunnel under the road and along the single track that takes you past the barking little mutt. We hit the fireroad and Aaron said this was going to be the last wide area to pass before Clark's, so get 'er done in here if ya have to. He pointed out the start of Clark's TT so I hit the watch to see how fast (slow!) I could do it on my SS (34x21). Wow, that's quite the climb. I pushed about as hard as I could go and did a 14:02. I don't know where that puts me but now I have a baseline to improve on. The trail was in great shape and the shade was very welcome.

After a brief stop at the top of Clark's Jay Griffin and his son came up behind us and we headed down the race course. That top flat section is real fast, even on a SS, and I just about launched myself on the bump past the gate and slowed just enough to make the sharp left hand turn on to the Ghost Falls trail. I should have known that that bump was a warning to slow down. I stayed on Aarons tail winding down through the tight flowing tree lined trail just having a ball. My speed was very good and I was hooking up real well, until that tight downsloping left hand 90 degree turn just before the 2nd or 3rd bridge came upon me from nowhere. Like a rookie, I grabbed too much front brake too late and went down hard in a sliding ball of dust. Fortunately I landed on my left side instead of my too often damaged right and just got a little road rash on my back, hip and calf. But the fun was not over. I got back up and headed down, albeit more cautiously, kowning I had better keep things in better control. Fortunately I did because about a minute or 2 after falling my left crank arm fell off! That was wierd. I walked back up the trail a ways but could not find the missing bolt so I proceeded to half pedal and hike back to the parking lot. So much for my spirited and informative pre-ride.

I wasn't able to ride the entire course but I hope I saw all the tight, dangerous stuff. I've got a feeling a lot of folks are going to donate blood on Monday. To me, this is a fast course that should be approached with extreme caution. The corners are tight and loose and the tiny rocks on the surface are very slippery. My little incident is going to slow mw down quite a bit cuz I don't want to jeaprodize Leadville by going for it in a "C" race. I hope I can remember that during the heat of a race. I think I'm going to let more air out of the tires too.

So, it should be interesting on Monday. Be careful and have fun.


KC said...

Ouch! Chris would have told you to be careful. :)

UtRider said...

Can I post your Clark's result on the blog?

StupidBike said...

My 'road rash' consists of a small scrape on my arm, which I got, while fooling around on the start finish loop at about 5mph.

My crank is still in one piece though, you just have crazy watts:)

Brad Mullen said...

I wish it were crazy watts. It's more like "don't you check over your bike before you ride, dumb ass." Thanks for being kind :-)

Aaron said...

Man, road rash is really contagious right now. It's spreading worse than the swine flu. After "the wall" I waited for a bit, but figured you'd met up with someone else and I headed down with the Griffins. Now I feel bad for not checking up to see what happened. Thanks for the plug, and 14 minutes is a great time on a SS.

Remember you were checking to see if your wheel was rubbing? I wonder if it was something to do with your crank?

Brad said...

I think it was the crank called my engine that was bad. I'll save the real crank excuse for later :-)