After much indecision, we decided to do 5-Mile Pass this weekend. It is definitely not our favorite race. I am not a fan of the course. The most redeeming quality of this race is that Racer's Cycle Service sponsors it and I am a big fan of Racer.
When Utah woke up on Saturday though it was raining--well pouring rain would be more accurate. We discussed it some more and due to scheduled events for the next couple of Saturdays we opted to go for it. 5-Mile Pass has a reputation of being a dry spot. We were optimistic that it would not be that wet there. It rained the entire way to Keith's house where we met up with several others to car pool to the race. It rained the entire way to the event site and it was raining at the site. The ground was saturated. Chris and I had not registered and we continued to wait and see what would happen.
I have said before that Ed runs the best races. Here is a perfect example why. Before the kids race he went out in the rain to ride the course to see if changes were needed. We watched him go into the last gully from the team tent. He did not come out as expected. A few moments later he is pushing his bike through the mud. He decided the course would be drastically modified--shortened. All races were postponed one hour.
There were rumors the BLM would cancel the race. We waited. They showed up and left. The modified race was still on. Ed went out to do the lap again in order to mark it. (Ed actually rides the courses and know exactly what he is expecting of the racers. That is just cool.) All adults would be doing one lap of the shortened course rumored to be around 5 miles. Chris and I were not sure this was worth it--approximately $10 per mile a piece. The kids took off and completed their race. The weather broke for a bit. It was then announced that the adults would be doing the same number of laps as originally scheduled but on the shortened course.
Based on this, I quickly registered both Chris and myself, got my warm riding clothes on, and my bike ready with the help of others. Thanks to Greg, Chris, and others I made it to the start line just a minute or so before my start. I have never been so rushed for a race. But I cannot complain Jesse was about 30 seconds late to his start. He still had a good finish though.
The course on the first lap was not that bad. There was a section that resembled a mud bog. I had to put a foot down and restart once. Going out for my second lap, I thought you know this course is not so bad. It was that bad on the second lap. The mud bog was tons worse and longer. The puddles had expanded. After the second lap, instead of picking up my water bottle I handed off my glasses. I knew I could not see well without them, but I really could not see with them. The course seemed very different without my prescription lenses, but I was able to maneuver safely even with impaired vision. I finished just over a minute behind Heather Holmes. I was content with that. I never cleaned the bog--a foot or two went down on each lap.
I also ruined my Superfly's cape (fender). It got weighed down with mud and drug against my rear tire through the entire third lap. I was heart broken when I realized what had happened. I loved that cape.