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  1. #1
    bi-winning
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    Official Summer (Hardwood) 8 hour discussion thread

    Summer Epic 8 Hour - July 25, Hardwood Ski and Bike

    Website: http://www.pulseracing.ca/

    Discuss!



    I love Hardwood, and I'll be there on a tag team.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  2. #2
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    I'll be up on a 4-man team and with +/-25 others from my club. Should be a great weekend.

    I've never been to hardwood and I'm really looking forward to the Friday pre-ride. I'll tick it off my list of places never ridden. Theres been a lot of those this year.

  3. #3
    Economy Stimulator
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    i would like to ride this....guess i better find a team or something...well at least one teammate would be good.

  4. #4
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    Course map

    Hey Y'all,

    I've never ridden there also.

    Anyone got any comments on the course and spots to look out for?

    2009fallmap.jpg

    I won't be arriving till around 8:30 Saturday morning. So I hope to have a quick pre ride then.

    Unless you want me to go first Jeff?

  5. #5
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    I thought you had a good strategy at the last 8hr, don't show up until after the race starts.

    I don't mind starting but the best strategy might not be to have the slowest guy do the most laps.

    Personally I'm looking forward to riding the infamous 'boneshaker' on Friday night. If you're getting in 3-4 laps of the course you might as well ride the other stuff the day before.

  6. #6
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    Team "Gasping For Air"

    Looking forward to the ride. We did the fall one in 2007 with a four man team and had a blast. Decided we'd challenge ourselves a little more this time around and go two man. I hope my legs are up for it!

    I'll be on a green Trek Fuel EX8 and my buddy rides a Gary Fisher Hi-Fi.

    See you there.

  7. #7
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by McGyver29er
    Anyone got any comments on the course and spots to look out for?
    That looks like a pretty standard Hardwood 8 Hour course. It's all pretty easy and fun. Some riders seem to run afoul of some of the off-camber twistier stuff past the "Desert". In the fall, a woman took a NASTY header going over a log in the "Pit View" area.

    Things I really begin to hate after 8 hours of riding: the lead-out all the way to the "Posts" and the section that runs parallel to the road leading to the "Desert". Guh!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  8. #8
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    pre-ride

    Can you pre-ride the course Saturday morning?

  9. #9
    Is it winter yet?
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    I managed to get a 4-man team thrown together. Very much looking forward to it.

  10. #10
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    I registered to do it solo. I pre-rode the course a couple of weeks ago and I found it to be a relatively technical course for a citizen race, but for experienced racers, nothing to worry about.

    I almost had a heart attack on the course (just before the "Desert") when I came across a black bear after a sharp turn. The bear started running and then stopped. I also stopped and turned around and pedaled away fast enough to win any O-Cup on any course.

    I went back to the main building and decided to wait until more people went on the course. I could barely bring myself to go back there.
    My rides:
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  11. #11
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    Gee you got me thinking now. Everybody was telling me how it would be a preety easy course and was debating on registering solo but now I am not to sure.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmstrek8
    Gee you got me thinking now. Everybody was telling me how it would be a preety easy course and was debating on registering solo but now I am not to sure.
    When I did it 2 years ago, there was much less climbing than a 24 hour at Albion. I think you'll be OK

    I remember TWO big climbs, and I just granny ringed up them last time. We'll see how this one goes.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmstrek8
    Gee you got me thinking now. Everybody was telling me how it would be a preety easy course and was debating on registering solo but now I am not to sure.
    It also looks like we are gonna get quite a bit of rain this week and (for now) even some rain the day of the race... My experience with hardwood hills is that it can become pretty treacherous to ride quickly because of roots that become really slick.. As long as its not raining while we are riding it should be fine though.

  14. #14
    NormalNorm
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    I almost had a heart attack on the course (just before the "Desert") when I came across a black bear after a sharp turn. The bear started running and then stopped. I also stopped and turned around and pedaled away fast enough to win any O-Cup on any course.
    Wow. Me, being a city person....was really surprised at you seeing a bear at Hardwood. I always thought the Parry Sound area was the "cut-off" on bears. Crazy. Is it normal?

    For the other posters that have never rode Hardwood....IMO its the best, nothing compares. I wished I lived closer.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkj__
    Summer Epic 8 Hour - July 25, Hardwood Ski and Bike

    Website: http://www.pulseracing.ca/

    Discuss!



    I love Hardwood, and I'll be there on a tag team.
    I will also be there with one of my regular team-mates in the tag-team category. Not a race we expect to place well in, but great training for Crank the Shield. And this category is much more challenging than running a 3-4 person team. At least that's my take. Looking forward to a great day and will be out with the helmet-cam as always. We also have a photographer out shooting his @ss off too.
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

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  16. #16
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    Hardwood Thrills

    Hardwood is a fantastic place to hold a race because it holds up well under any weather condition. It has been rode hard and put away wet since the 80ís, so the paid employees have armored, graveled, rerouted and designed the system for all weather racing. Since it has had a ton of traffic the roots are plenty and they do become slick as snot when wet, so be aware and donít trust them. The wilderness side has seen much less traffic and in my opinion are some of the best trails around.

    Bears are a common sight in our area, but have become use to people in the forest around Hardwood so relax and enjoy the ride. Other forests around Hardwood see less people so you have a better chance of startling one and that is not good for you. The only problem so far with the bears is that they seam to like to crap on the trail, so practice your bunny hop, it smells horrible. The population is not just 1-2 year olds traveling down because they donít know better; several moms with cubs in tow have been spotted. That situation is almost as dangerous as the Cougars that roam the area.

    Have a great race at Hardwood, thatís what it was built for and it has been King of the hill in Ontario for decades. For years it was the site of the largest 24 hours race in North America and never had to cancel a race due to rain. Ride with pride since your money is going to a great facility.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phat Tyred
    Hardwood is a fantastic place to hold a race because it holds up well under any weather condition. It has been rode hard and put away wet since the 80ís, so the paid employees have armored, graveled, rerouted and designed the system for all weather racing. Since it has had a ton of traffic the roots are plenty and they do become slick as snot when wet, so be aware and donít trust them. The wilderness side has seen much less traffic and in my opinion are some of the best trails around.

    Bears are a common sight in our area, but have become use to people in the forest around Hardwood so relax and enjoy the ride. Other forests around Hardwood see less people so you have a better chance of startling one and that is not good for you. The only problem so far with the bears is that they seam to like to crap on the trail, so practice your bunny hop, it smells horrible. The population is not just 1-2 year olds traveling down because they donít know better; several moms with cubs in tow have been spotted. That situation is almost as dangerous as the Cougars that roam the area.

    Have a great race at Hardwood, thatís what it was built for and it has been King of the hill in Ontario for decades. For years it was the site of the largest 24 hours race in North America and never had to cancel a race due to rain. Ride with pride since your money is going to a great facility.

    Bears eh
    just remember to slide back in the saddle and pull up hard and don't forget to keep a good cadence going (a really good one).If you're already going really fast you may want to try bunny hopping over. If you manage to make it don't look back just keep peddaling.
    For all you people lucky anough to race this weekend have a good one.I get to go to Sarnia to visit my mother in law this weekend.

  18. #18
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    gmstrek8: Gee you got me thinking now. Everybody was telling me how it would be a preety easy course and was debating on registering solo but now I am not to sure.

    In the last couple of years the Hardwood 8 HOUR has been getting a little harder, with more climbing and more technical terrain. Sure it is easy compared to an average O-Cup course, but after 5, 6, 7 hours it will be painful. I would still encourage you to try a solo, but you won't ever hear me label a course as "pretty easy". Even the easiest course can be a killer if the pace is high enough.
    My rides:
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  19. #19
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    The forecast looks rather wet for Saturday. If I recall correctly, last year we started in the rain but it stopped shortly after the race had started. Let's kep the fingers crossed for similar (or better) luck this year...
    Jouko

  20. #20
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    Well I passed on the race I figure I just did the 8 hr Fly Gurlz last weekend so I should get some stuff done around the house. Plus the weather wasn't looking so good either. So now you should have good weather since I didn't register. Hope everybody has a great time. I'm hope to get some riding in at HH the first week of Aug when I am on holidays.

  21. #21
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    Damn, the more I look at the forecast, the less I want to do this race. What the hell did we do to deserve such a lousy summer?
    My rides:
    Lynskey Ti Pro29 SL singlespeed
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    Damn, the more I look at the forecast, the less I want to do this race. What the hell did we do to deserve such a lousy summer?
    No kidding...Two ****e summers in a row.
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

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  23. #23
    bi-winning
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbmeister
    No kidding...Two ****e summers in a row.
    What, you guys don't love putting on soggy bike shoes and soaked gloves to go out for another lap?

    I'm going to remain optimistic for this one, and wait to see how it plays out. If the weather turns out to be rainy, I may choose to voice some grievances post race, but until then, I'll just throw on some knobby tires, fresh shift cables and housing, and pack spare brake pads, and lots of clothing.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkj__
    What, you guys don't love putting on soggy bike shoes and soaked gloves to go out for another lap?

    I'm going to remain optimistic for this one, and wait to see how it plays out. If the weather turns out to be rainy, I may choose to voice some grievances post race, but until then, I'll just throw on some knobby tires, fresh shift cables and housing, and pack spare brake pads, and lots of clothing.
    Thats the spirit! Please give me a pat on the back when you pass me tomorrow, ill likely need it. I'm in with my girlfriend as a two-person team, and I'm not sure if she is ready for hardwood in the rain (which means it might turn into a solo 8 hour fairly quickly, but I'm hoping for the best). Regardless of the conditions, I think its going to be an awesome race. Good luck to everyone!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by beereppc
    Thats the spirit! Please give me a pat on the back when you pass me tomorrow, ill likely need it. I'm in with my girlfriend as a two-person team, and I'm not sure if she is ready for hardwood in the rain (which means it might turn into a solo 8 hour fairly quickly, but I'm hoping for the best). Regardless of the conditions, I think its going to be an awesome race. Good luck to everyone!
    I did this race last year on a co-ed tag team with my sister, who is less experienced than I am. Before the race, the area got some hard rain. The trails were a little wet to start, but she did really well, and had a good time. Fortunately, the rain stopped, and the trails dried up really quickly. That said, I definitely did a lot more than 50% of the riding.

    Anyway, all the best with your race. Be encouraging, and your girlfriend may have more fun than expected.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  26. #26
    bi-winning
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    ps, Barrie got 52mm of rain yesterday.

    Some forecast are mentioning a risk of wind or hail or thunder or tornados or the sky falling or whatever.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  27. #27
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    No Worries of bears here.

    I'll be rockin' the bar mounted cowbell!

    Aside from never having to ask to pass someone, it scares away the bears too!

    Looking fwd to the relay format. Always a blast!

    See y'all there!

  28. #28
    bi-winning
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    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  29. #29
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    Those are some clean pants for a photo containing so much mud.

  30. #30
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    Good time!

    EPIC

    Too bad about the traffic delay on the 400.

    Hope to see Y'all at Canal Days Mountain Bike race next weekend.

  31. #31
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    It was fun!
    www.mtbiker.ca

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    Cervelo SLC - SRAM Rival - Reynolds DV46T (16.25 lbs)

  32. #32
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    Race Report

    Good morning everyone.

    Yesterday was a good day, and it is one of those races that will stick in my memories for a while.

    Unfortunately, the day did get off to a bad start for my tag team. Both of us got tied up in traffic, due to a fatal traffic accident on the 400. So, 10:00 came around, and neither of us were at the start line. Shame. We arrived at about the same time. Neither of us were too pissed off. No sense getting all upset about an incident you did not expect. We knew we were not going to win anyways, so our goal of doing our best remained. All in all, we lost about 35 minutes of race time.

    When we got to racing, we found that the course was quite good. Many described it as "easy" and it was clearly designed in anticipation of bad weather. There was no real tough climbs, and technically it was quite tame for a Hardwood Hills course. That said, there was a lot of singletrack, and the course flowed nicely. Fun. There were a few stretches that went on for a few minutes that lacked good passing opportunities, but, in any relay race, the faster racers know that a little patience is often required.

    Next, weather. The day started off overcast, but not rainy. The course was a tad slick, but with the right tires, traction was good. A couple hours into the race, we got some light rain, which made the course just a tad slicker. You had to be careful, because the conditions were always changing. The light rain did not last long, and with the wind, things started to dry a little.

    However, a little later, it started to rain. And then, it continued to rain. Then, it was raining somewhat hard. Things turned slick. Fortunately though, the course was still very rideable, due to the course design, and sandy soil.

    Things worked out pretty well for me, as I only did one lap in the sloshy conditions. However, those conditions did not take long to mess with my brake pads. They were pretty well worn before the lap, and what was left of them melted away pretty quickly. It was interesting to be squeezing the brake levers, but hardly slowing down at all. Flinstone style braking helped me get through the lap. I had planned on doing a double, but they were not sending out any more riders on the course.

    So, in conclusion, most of the race was pretty good, and the weather just got nasty for the last couple hours. It was definitely worth noting that this race did not seem to be as well attended as usual. The forecast definitely scared off a few.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  33. #33
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    Me in orange


    My tag partner John


    McGyver29er


    TrailHog A team transition


    Me again


    Sprinting


    Passing


    Dismounting


    Me and JC


    I took this one from inside the dry van


    This is what racers looked like after their last lap


    Some really enjoy the mud


    My dad gets credit for many of the pictures


    thedumbopinion wants some BBQ




    FULL SET: http://s292.photobucket.com/albums/m...208/?start=all
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  34. #34
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    I have mixed feelings about this race, even though I am happy with my placing (6th in the 40+ on my singlespeed). The day started badly with a 2.5 hour ride to Hardwood. Yes, I also got caught in the traffic jam, but considering a 19-year old died in that accident, I guess I should not complain.

    I managed to get to Hardwood minutes before the start and after a fast registration, a quick change of clothes and gulping down all kinds of carbs I started only 8 minutes behind. I had an awful first lap and felt sick (only because I gulped down too much, too quickly), but I have a good stomach and by the second lap I felt fine. Then I settled into a rythm that would have given me 12 laps, which was my goal for this course.

    All went well until I was on my 9th lap and the torrential rain started. I was thinking about calling it a day, but I still felt very good. So I continued on lap #10, which was more brutal than I expected. Having a Racing Ralph in the back was a bad choice and I was slipping on every stroke (like probably many other riders). At least I had the Jones ACX in front, which was great for control. Lap 11 was just plain nasty. I don't know how people enjoy this stuff. I hated it, but I survived and even managed to catch and pass rider #30. He was also on a singlespeed (but racing in 40+) and struggling in the mud.

    If it wasn't for the last 2 hours of heavy rain, it would have been perfect.
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  35. #35
    bi-winning
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    Great result Tom.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  36. #36
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    Thanks Ryan. You guys did well too and would have had 12 laps easily if it was not for the delay on the 400.
    My rides:
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  37. #37
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    Well staying up there Friday night saved our clan (Trailhogs/Shorthillbillies) from missing the start and scored us a choice location right beside the transition area so the day started off very well. I was on a 4-man 120-159 team and after my first lap and the timing computers got sorted out we found ourselves in 6th place.

    McGyver29er anchored our team and pulled us to within 8 minutes of third at the end of the first round and young Sparrow had pulled us to 2 minutes by the time I went out for a rainy 2nd lap. I knew which lapdog I had to catch and did so with about 4k to go so when I pulled into transition we were in third. Through the next round of laps we went back and forth with the lapdogs 3rd, 4th, 3rd, 4th.

    Out for my 3rd lap and it was much the same, catch the lapdog 2 minutes up the road. By now it had stopped raining for about 2 hours and I though the course was in the best shape it had been in all day. I road each section as hard as I could hoping the competition would be around the corner but I didn't catch him until the 4k mark again. This time he waved me by with a flick of the wrist and we were back in 3rd. When I pulled in to transition area at 3:45 it had just started raining.

    The rain started coming down harder and harder and harder. Riders were coming back covered in mud, it was a slop fest and I knew I had one more lap to go. Lapdogs sent out there ace to run the last two laps and by the time I left transition at 5pm we were 7 minutes down and my goal was to secure 4th and make it around alive before 6pm (new cutoff).

    With the exception of one stretch on one lap the Race Kings worked very well. Even though I was losing confidence in them they held up with the exception of the final lap. The final lap started out half decent for a rain storm lap. Up the opening climb avoiding the river that had formed and the first few bits of s-t were slow going but I kept the rubberside down. Crossed the road and got into the long s-t sections and things went to hell. The mud had piled up and there were hike a bike sections. I turned a corner, slid out and smashed my knee of a rock. There is a hole there now but it doesn't hurt, how thats is possible I don't know. The tires were terrible I couldn't climb and I had no brakes so I couldn't descent safely. After the crash I just started running the technical bits since it was much faster. I crossed the road again and had 1k to go. That final km was super fun wasn't it?

    So in the end I managed to secure 4th (barely) for our team who rode hard all day and turned some great laps. It was a good team to be on and thanks to them I was as close to a podium as I've ever been. Out of our 7 club teams we had 3 podiums and two 4th place finishes. A great day for the Shorthills Cycling Club.

    Ryan, you're right, weather it be the conditions or the comradery, it is one of those races that will stick in the memories for a while.

  38. #38
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    So, today I got around to doing some much needed bike maintenance... my one front brake pad had absolutely no braking material left on it. The abuse roughed up the rotors a little.

    Other notes on equipment.

    Once again, I really enjoyed my wet weather tire choice:
    Front: WTB Prowler MX
    Rear: Michelin XC Dry

    Sealed ferrules on Shimano SP41 housing does a good job of maintaining shift performance in adverse conditions.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  39. #39
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    Guys, I saw several people taking pictures and they looked like professionals. Does anyone know who was taking pics?
    My rides:
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    KHS CX 550 cyclocross

  40. #40
    bi-winning
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    Guys, I saw several people taking pictures and they looked like professionals. Does anyone know who was taking pics?
    I believe Race Day Rush should have some pictures up in the near future.

    ps, the dude by the rock obstacle must have had a really wide lens.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  41. #41
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    I absolutely had a great time at the summer 8, again I agree the course was easy but smartly laid out for the rain that had hit Barrie and was coming unfortunately. Our 4 man team placed 9th out of 45 teams but it was cut short because of the weather. I admit that I love racing in the rain, I love just getting dirty and as long as I don't crash you can't wipe the smile off my face in that rain and mud. I love racing at Hardwood and it is a great race venue plus I can't believe how much time I spent under the watermelon tent eating non-stop LOL. Great race great time it just sucked having to pack up in a downpour.

  42. #42
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    NewbieTed: I admit that I love racing in the rain .... it just sucked having to pack up in a downpour.

    Huh? Why pack up if you love it?
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    Lynskey Ti Pro29 SL singlespeed
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  43. #43
    No. Just No.
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    Huh? Why pack up if you love it?
    Just a guess, but maybe because if you depart from the venue after the race and you leave all your gear there someone will take it.

  44. #44
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    The rain did end...

    By the time we got around to packing up team NF, the rain had ended and the evening was looking quite nice. One must not leave so early in order to avoid these types of problems...

    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    NewbieTed: I admit that I love racing in the rain .... it just sucked having to pack up in a downpour.

    Huh? Why pack up if you love it?
    Tom - once again we spent a day at a race and didn't have a chance to say hi...I did look for you on the trail but no luck...congratulations on a strong performance!
    Jouko

  45. #45
    bi-winning
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    One good thing about the rain during the awards / packing up, is that it did a half decent job of washing off my bike.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  46. #46
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    Pics from Race

    Hi Tom,

    Ryan is correct, we have some pics posted at http://racedayrush.zoomphoto.ca. They are still being uploaded,but we should have most up in the next 1-2 days. Great result on the weekend.

    Neil

    Quote Originally Posted by serious
    Guys, I saw several people taking pictures and they looked like professionals. Does anyone know who was taking pics?
    Last edited by mtbmeister; 07-26-2009 at 06:49 PM.
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

    http://www.apexracephotography.com

  47. #47
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    Insane Final Lap

    I don't know how many of you had the opportunity to get out for the final lap out there. My tag-team partner came in with two minutes until cut-off, unfortunately. Well, I was thinking that at the time I saw him, but felt good after sucking it up in the final lap. It was so muddy (although different than Albion at the Solstice), that I actually closed my eyes briefly a few times on the downhills to avoid getting mud in my eyes. Hitting burms with 4-5 inches of water was a unique experience. There was really only a couple of spots that were totally unrideable, so the challenge was a unique one, especially to get back in in 45 mins or less in the slop, which I did. There was mud in every possible spot on my body and bike following that though. Overall, it was a great day that was made decent by weather that was only bad for a couple of hours. Great effort and good sportsmanship by all.

    Cheers,

    N.
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

    http://www.apexracephotography.com

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbmeister
    we have some pics posted at http://racedayrush.zoomphoto.com.

    Neil
    I don't see them. Where do I click? I just get a bunch of links to various photo sites.

    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by thedumbopinion
    Out of our 7 club teams we had 3 podiums and two 4th place finishes. A great day for the Shorthills Cycling Club.
    Hey Jeff,

    Yes it was a great day for the ShortHills Cycling Club.
    A slight correction though, we actually had 8 teams.
    Our results were: one 1st, one 2nd, one 3rd, one 4th, three 6th and one 14th place finish(s).


    I have to say that you turned some impressive lap times.
    Your riding has come a long way, almost a good as your raking abilities...

    I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me.
    Hunter S. Thompson

  50. #50
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    Jouko

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