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With a bit of reprieve from Mother Nature in an otherwise cold and rainy day, the Montana Velo squad put on a great inaugural Marysville Classic road race on Saturday. There were about 25 racers from around the state that showed up to face the elements, along with the challenge of 59 miles & two brutal climbs. Things started out fine enough for me as the roll out from Marysville to Hwy 287 occured without incident. However, just as things were starting to ramp up in the pack, I rear flatted at the Canyon Creek Store & quickly found myself dropped. My worst fear for today’s race had just come to fruition…I was facing a long, lonely day in the wind. Just as I was cursing my fate, Frankie G. and the Grand Marquis pulled up with a spare wheel for me! Sweet redemption was possible, but there was work to be done first. With the new wheel, I managed to get back in with the pack by the Stemple Pass turn-off. Unfortunately, the thrill of that accomplishment quickly ended as, due to the matches burned getting back into the mix, Flesher Pass was a tougher than usual experience for me. I climbed like a fat tabby cat all the way up. The descent wasn’t much better. About halfway down, inexplicitly screwing up every corner, it suddently dawned on me…I’d forgotten to flip the brake on that rear wheel change back there at Canyon Creek!?!? Going 35 mph down a hairpin pass with just a front brake…I don’t recommend it! After eventually fumblin’ my way down, I hooked up with a couple of other riders and the three of us shared pulls until getting back up with the main pack by (ironically) Canyon Creek. From there, with the snow gently coming down on us, the run up to Great Divide was awesome. Following the wheel tracks on the 1.5 mile dirt road up to the ski resort, there was one consistent trend…no straight lines. A weaving effort up for all! Crossing the finish line, after overcoming all the challenges that were presented, felt really good for me. Miraculously, the weather stayed manageable for the entire 3 hours it took most of us to finish. Racers never got overly wet & the roads stayed pretty dry for us. Great day of sufferin’. Thanks again to the Flyin’ Dutchman & the Montana Velo team for a great race…


One Comment

  1. A fat tabby makes the mice scurry. This is a colorful snapshot that race results could never capture.

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