Thats right folks, it's time for the 5th annual AFC Sugar Hill Race. Where fun is had for all (unless you consider redlining in the first 5 minutes fun)! We will see great displays of courage (pride) and determination (cutthroat tactics) on the trails on saturday (unless it rains). Yes folks, with 3000ft of elevation and 22.3 miles, this should be a doozy.
Yes, I have been doing this race since its inception. I love to hate this race. Why? One; it is early in the season and two; it is early in the season and the waterbars climb has your heart rate in zone 9z at the very beginning and there is not alot of places to kick back and relax; climbing is on the menu for today.
I have progressively gotten better here every year. In 2009, I finished 8th well behind first place-to be fair, I really didnt train in 2009, I just went out and rode till I puked. In 2010, I finished 7th with a better showing and 3 minutes faster. 2011, I had my best race thus far. I was actually in the lead for the first two laps and just couldnt hold on at the end and ended up 3rd. This was the first year it was run in the opposite direction which had 3x's the climbing. Last year was pretty good. I finished six minutes faster than 2011 and ended up 4th. Though my placement was one place lower, my time is what I was super pleased with. I really noticed a big improvement in my overall fitness level. This year I feel I am in the best shape ever. My goal is to finish sub 2 hour (2:02 last year). I think it is doable being that I have 58,000 more feet of climbing and have done a boat load of endurance miles to boot.
I feel pretty tight right now and this week I have been doing E2 riding. Last year I made a crucial error and 3 days before the race, went out and hammered the course for 3 laps and then some. It was fun I have to admit, though.
The forecast is showing rain, so we shall see how this whole thing plays out.