Another quick and belated blog post coming at ya! It was rad to have another home race and to be sleeping in my own bed. It was also a ton of fun to have so many friends and teammates in town and enjoying the place where I now live.
Things kicked off on Friday with the short track aka "Jort Track." Ripton Jeans Co. hooked up one of our Bear National Team staff Colby with a box of jorts and we took them out for a spin(an aggressive national level race).
The Missoula short track course has always been a tough one for me to crack. I got off to a slow start but worked my way up the whole race through careful pacing. It hurt like heck but I finished it off with a 9th place finish. I held pace with the lead group but due to my slow start I was never able to make contact, and was stuck chasing 10-20 seconds back the whole time. Basically I was strong enough to keep up but not strong enough to close that gap to such a fast group of riders. Next time a better start and positioning would be the ticket!
On Saturday morning we hit the cross country event. Some morning rain made the course a bit sloppy and chilly weather changed the dynamics of the event for riders who were caught off guard.
I had a solid start and settled into the top ten up the first climb. I paced myself carefully and worked into the middle of a solid group. I tried to jump around the group before the first descent because I knew it well but riders fought hard for that lead spot.
Going into lap two things started to separate out a bit and settle down. The lead group of three was up the road a ways and I battled in the group fighting for 4th-8th. After a few laps we caught my teammate Bjorn and our group fought ahead now fighting for 3rd-7th place. As things came down to the last 1.5 laps I just didn't have the legs to earn my spot on the podium. Luke V. surged away early to finish third, my teammate Pav punched in a great final lap to finish 4th, Ryan Standish hung tough for 5th, Alex wild took sixth and I finished up 7th.
I wanted that podium spot pretty dang badly but I was happy with my performance and the consistency of my results so far this season. Next up is MTB Nats!!! Final photo by Robert Mazza, all others by Jackson Morann.