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2012 6 Hours of Warrior Creek Report – The good, the bad and the really ugly

1 Arleigh Jenkins 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

A friend of mine, Jason Grantz, has been focusing on the definition of words for the past couple weeks. I’m going to utilize this idea and sum up how I feel the day after 6 Hours of Warrior Creek.

broken |ˈbrōkən| past participle of break 

adjective

1 having been fractured or damaged and no longer in one piece or in working order : a broken arm.

rejected, defeated, or despairing : he went to his grave a broken man | a broken heart.

• sick or weakened : broken health.

• (of a relationship) ended, typically by betrayal or faithlessness : a broken marriage.

• disrupted or divided : broken families.

• (of an agreement or promise) not observed by one of the parties involved.

2 having gaps or intervals that break a continuity : a broken white line across the road.

spoken haltingly, as if overcome by emotion : he whispered in a broken voice.

Arleigh Jenkins 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

The Good

The trail was amazing, the berms were buff, the climbs had traction and even the first lap wasn’t too muddy.The temperature ended up being around 70º in Wilkesboro, NC.

The pit crew, as always, was extraordinary. Kimberlee and Shelley were always there for food, smiles and a good kick in the butt.

Our pit mates, the guys from Luna Cycles, Dale and Robbie, and of course Darby.

The weather was perfect, a bit chilly in the morning ending up around 75 in the afternoon.

The other racers, encouraging, helpful, inspiring.

My teammate, Melissa. Always smiling and optimistic. Even when my last lap took twice as long as it should and we ended in last place.

The sweet lady next to our pits that recognized me as Bike Shop Girl and even stopped as I was suffering after the race to say she enjoyed my writing.

The Bad

A flat tire at mile 5 on my second lap.

Losing tons of electrolytes and only having water on my back.

Walking a ton on that second lap.

The feeling of competitors passing you and not being able to do a damn thing about it.

The Ugly

Let’s get down to the nitty gritty, wtf happened?

Somewhere between the start of lap one, and the middle of lap two my bottom bracket started to seize up. Hills that I was able to spin up in a middle gear on my cassette I was grinding up in my easiest cog. My multi-tool didn’t have a 2.5mm allen wrench on it to back out the adjustable ring on the SRAM X-9 cranks.

The feeling when you realize why you are sucking is between happiness and a stupid sick gut wrenching. Especially when you realize you can’t fix the thing. I knew I had 5 miles more to go, and most of it was up hill. It got to a point that I was simply hoping that I would get through before 5pm for my lap to count.

For the rest of the lap I pushed, grinded, walked, tried to smile and hoped the miles would tick by. My knees ached from trying to climb the hills with my cranks not spinning freely, my stomach hurt and at times I hit hyperventilation in frustration and pain.

A couple days later I feel better. My knees still hurt, and my brain is rather screwed up from the event. Who knows if I could have done something differently. Maybe check over my bike better between laps. Maybe tell PF30 bottom brackets to kiss my ass.

I feel badly for letting down my team. I feel badly about many things. At the end of the day it is only a race, but to look forward to something for a complete year and it to end this way is a horrible feeling.

6 Hours of Warrior Creek Secret Discount Code

2 6WC

For some reason Jason over at 6 Hours of Warrior Creek likes me…  Regardless he has allowed me to slip you folks a secret discount code.

6 Hours of Warrior Creek

April 7, 2012 in Wilkesboro, NC

Registration opens October 31, 2011 at 12:01am here…Click me (but look at the code below)

The first 100 spots that use the below coupon code… get 20% off applicable registration fees!

Secret Code for Registration: HEADWATERS1

 

 

Arleigh’s Race Recap: 2011 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

2 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

As a human I try not to stress about the small things in life, only when I am highly intoxicated do I start to worry about all the things in life that I am juggling.   A few days last week I started to stress out majorly about the upcoming 6 Hours of Warrior Creek.

6 Hours of Warrior Creek

Worries are for Pussies

And I’m a pussy.   Here’s a small list of things I stressed about over the course of the week prior to the race.

  • Tire selection
  • Gear selection
  • Lack of riding in the mountains
  • Lack of gears
  • Lack of suspension
  • Lack of pre-riding the course
  • Girlfriend would be in the pit with a broken foot, could she make it to the bathroom…up the road..?
  • Weather
  • Wind
  • Mud

Race Day

The car was packed, we were ready and in the car by 5:45am and at the gate (7th in line) waiting by 6:45am.    10 minutes from the course there was evidence of a rainstorm with puddles of rain on the road and limbs across the shoulders.   Not good, not good at all.

6 Hours of Warrior Creek

Quickly, my trusty pit chief Kimberlee and I setup our spot that was to be shared with my team mate Melissa, her pit chief, Shelley, their dog Darby, a teammate racing solo, Stephanie, and Namrita/Eddie from Team Ergon Racing.   Oh, you can’t forget Team Dicky who pit next to us but poached some grass from our pit area.

Stephanie and I pre-rode 2 miles of the course to see how much rain was left, and to contemplate switching tires or single speed gearing.  I regrettbly forgot to do many things.  1. Put toe spikes on my shoes, 2. Switch tires, 3. Switch gears.

Actual Race Recap

6 Hours of Warrior Creek

This could be the hardest and stupidest thing I have done on a mountain bike in a long time.   The first lap, which I happened to be doing for our team, was the hardest.   The course is super fun and fast when dry.  Tons of berms, switch backs and as long as you stay in front of your gear..it is great fun.    For the 13 mile course I probably walked 4 miles.  Most switch backs were so muddy and rutted by the time I got to them, my front tire would slip through and my gearing would cause rear tire slippage.  I was simply left to walk up the short up hills.

My calves screamed.

My brain was frazzled.

It was not fun, at all.

By the time my lap was finished I was so mentally beat down that you couldn’t have paid me to get back on my bike that day.    I’m not ready to be racing single speed or single speed fully rigid for multi lap racing.  I’m also in better shape than this time last year, but that did not show up at the mud wrestling I dealt with.

Looking Back

I probably wouldn’t of done anything different.   You learn from every race, and I can atleast say I didn’t quit.  Yeah, I could have done another lap but I didn’t.   I’m looking forward to having gears and some suspension in my future thanks to Airborne.

2011 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

At the end of the day we came in 3rd place for our division at 6WC, not at all thanks to me.  I owe that completely to Melissa my awesome partner in crime.   A podium place, swag and a cool coffee mug.  It could have always been worse… I didn’t crash or break anything!