Tuesday, May 27, 2008

SERC #5 aka.... Kym's BACK!!!!

Kym on the podium!!
Okay, so I'm still not 100% but after last weekend's dismal performance at Stumpjump I am just so happy to feel almost like a bike racer again I can hardly stand it. I felt strong this weekend, still not fast, but strong.

The SERC series is half over and even after being sick I might have a shot at the overall if I can put together a few good results. There is a make-up race and two dropped scores so there is still hope. I went to Athens, GA this weekend hoping that it might be my turn around. I did it!!! I WON!!!! It felt so good to win a race, especially after being sick for so long. I raced as hard as I could and although I was still not as fast as I was before getting sick, my endurance was GREAT and I felt strong the whole race. It was a good day.
Catherine wins again!!

Catherine is hooked on mountain biking. She raced her 3rd race ever and WON. It was wet and slippery and so it was that much more impressive. She is not fond of the wet roots or tight trails and there was an abundance of both. Great job girl!!!

Emily was also there and held her own to finish 9th. She is doing so great this year, it is so impressive to me that at 15 years old she is not only racing in a combined Pro/Expert field against adults but that she is competitive. It is going to be so much fun to see her race at nationals against girls her own age.

Thanks for reading...

Stumpjump- Spartanburg, SC

Thursday May 15th I was cleared by the doctor. I now am once again healthy. The pneumonia is GONE. My immediate reaction was "does that mean I can race this weekend??". The answer was "yes" so I immediately started packing. Before I go any farther with this little story let me just say that just because the mind is willing does NOT mean that the body is able. 6 weeks of being sick takes a bit of a toll....

There was a lot of racing that happened in a two day time period. 6 girls did 3 different races in two states. We ended up with 8 podium appearances. It doesn't get much better than that!!!

Star and Lisa went to the greater Nashville area for some road racing Saturday (where they took 3rd (Lisa) and 4th (Star) in the category 1/2/3 women's field. They obviously had not had enough racing because they then went and raced on the dirt the next day at Montgomery Bell State Park and took 2nd (Lisa) and 5th (Star). Both ladies had a great time and represented well.

Jamie, Tanya, Emily and I went to SC to Stumpjump; a big AMBC mountain bike event here in the southeast. They were running separate Pro and Expert women's categories (as well as a Junior Expert Women's category) and they paid REALLY well. We were going to have our hand full with the competition.

Emily started us off on the right foot by scoring a win in the Junior Expert Women's race. Jamie, Tanya and I lined up in the Pro race and we were off. OUCH. I knew that the first race back was going to hurt but DAMN THIS HURTS!!!! It is amazing how badly one can suffer while going so slowly. Jamie took the lead with one girl on her wheel and never looked back. Tanya and I were in a chase group of three and we worked together for about a lap. Tanya eventually dropped me but I never lost sight of her. Jamie won, Tanya took third and I was 4th, 15 seconds behind her. Had it been anyone else I might have dug a bit harder at the end but I was very content (and very much blown....) to get beat by Tanya. It was a really great day for the team but a really tough ride for me personally. I am glad the first painful one is over. Hopefully the next race won't hurt quite so bad.

Great weekend ladies...

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Tanasi SERC #4

The team.

This past weekend was the Tanasi SERC race. It was significant for a number of reasons. First, we had the ENTIRE team there. Everyone raced except me (more on that in a minute) and we had numerous podium appearances. Second, those are some of our "home trails" and we had a great local crowd and cheering section. We even got Bill out with his "fancy camera" to get some team photos. It was a GREAT day.

Tanya and Emily on the starting line.

Okay, first my disclaimer: I have walking pneumonia. I have been fighting this "mystery desert funk" since the trip out west 5 weeks ago and it started getting MUCH worse after the Winder, GA race last weekend. After two trips to the doc I have been diagnosed and I am feeling almost 100% again for the first time in what feels like FOREVER. Because of this I was not allowed to race this weekend (Doctor's quote was "chill out"). I asked if that meant racing was out and he said YES. I can't race again until after I go back to see him next week.

Lisa and Gina with their "game face on".

The morning started with us trying to all get in the same location for 10 minutes for some pictures. Easier said than done!! Jamie lost the car (she rode with Star and didn't remember what it looked like after she ran to the restroom when they first got there) and everyone was getting ready and running in circles. We finally got some shots of all of us that are GREAT. Too bad the new clothing showed up today instead of before the weekend.

Jamie on the top of the Pro Women's podium.

The first wave was the Pro/Expert women's race and the Sport women's race. Because this was a SERC bonus round I had to "start" to get my bonus points. I lined up, in my kit (no bottle...) and when they said "go" I buried myself and blew the field apart for the first 30 seconds, got the hole shot, and then sat up and quit. It was kind of fun. I got some really strange looks from the other girls in the field. I then handed out bottles to all my teammates and a few of the boys. I was running in circles in the feed zone for two hours!!! The girls kicked butt in what was arguably some of the strongest fields we have seen in a long time. Jamie won the Pro/Expert race. Paula was sitting third until she blew the sidewall of her tire and had to quit. Tanya took 6th and Emily was 13th. Shannon had some trouble and ended up pulling out and helping me cheer and hand out bottles. Our "roadies" took to the dirt convincingly this weekend with Gina taking second in the Sport race and Lisa taking third. Star gets the award for the day for the biggest bruises and most blood. She took a SPECTACULAR fall and got up and finished in 10th.

Catherine is all smiles after her win.

Catherine lined up in the later wave at 11:30 to race the beginner women's race. Since she just started mountain biking two months ago we agreed to let her do the beginner thing for a while. She ROCKED. She took the lead when they said "go" and never looked back. She won by 6.5 minutes. I see sport racing in the near future for her!!

Emily on her pretty new PINK Specialized.

We ended the weekend with a great lunch and fun race stories. It was really a bummer that I didn't get to race but it was still one of the most fun race days I have had in a LONG time. I was so proud to be part of "that women's team with all the fast girls". Everyone was so impressed with our racing and the size of our team.

Kym wishing on the starting line that she could go race today...

Thanks ladies for such a great weekend!!!