If you are looking for a motivation for indoor training, you cannot miss with these – the views are awesome, plus you’ll get to see that ultra cyclists aren’t necessarily slow.
… Like planned, I slept for two sleep cycles which is the whole three hours. Some of the competitors slept less, so that gave me “targets” for overtaking on the way to Utah and Colorado.
I’ve never rode through Monument Valley as fast as this year. My average speed from time station Kayenta to Mexican Hat was more than 36km / h, with some the help from the wind, of course, but still crazy fast ride. I loved it! In the next kilometer I overtook Jason “Hammer” Lee and some minutes later I caught up to Gulewicz. We talked for a few minutes, he wondered I was pushing it so early in the morning? All I did was taking advantage of feeling good after a good sleep, my legs felt like new, so I quickly advanced into the heart of Colorado and towards the highest peaks of the Rocky Monutains.
Unfortunately, with an elevation my good feelings were slowly disappearing and now after the race I can see that was the time, when my chances for a podium finish slipped through my hands. I’ve never had so much trouble climbing the hills over 3000m above sea level, except maybe in RAAM 2005, when I was climbing those with pneumonia all over my lungs. Shallow breathing, wheezing and consequently empty legs could barely turn the pedals uphill. It caused my distance to the leaders to become unattainable, while my pursuers were again catching up with me.
The first who overtook me before Wolf Creek Pass was Gulewicz. Of course, we couldn’t do without more problems, as I cracked my bike frame for the hills TCR and I had to switch to PROPEL, which was set up more for time trialing. Yet another of the million problems we seemed to have this year…