Saturday, July 10, 2010

And I Thought Our Rednecks Were Crazy

OR "Pre Riding The Assault On Cherokee Bike Course"

Another early Saturday morning wake-up call. The pre ride for the Assault On Cherokee International was set for 8am and it's almost 1.5 hour drive up there from the house.... So I was in the car by 6.15am.

May I introduce you to Mr. Moose? He has been hanging on my rear view mirror for at least 10 years (different cars). He used to be brown, but now he is all bleached out to this pretty shade of purple. Mr. Moose has seen quite a bit of the world... ;-)

I was up at Camp Cherokee around 7.45 and there were two other cars in the parking lot. That didn't look like it's going to be a big group, but by the time we finally left for the ride (maybe around 8.15am) we were at least 30 people.

On off we were. To describe the course in short: Save the best for last! The first 10 miles are nice and flat to rolling. This is were you can really bank some time. The next 10 miles are rolling hills, but for a big portion of that stretch, the pavement is really really bad. The last 8 miles has some really long hills on them, but also some nice long downhills to rest up a little.

This is a pretty course. The end of the course is nice and in the shade. In a couple of stretches, traffic was a little crazy. But maybe the craziest/ scariest part of all of it, was the dumb a$$ that threw a firecracker in our crowd while we were waiting there to regroup. Two girls that were still on the road did get a firecracker out of the same truck and on top of it, they the passenger stuck out his naked butt out of the window. Oh boy.... You think you saw it all and then this. Fortunately, nobody got hurt.... But I assume that the picture of this big white butt is going to produce a couple of nightmares!

Around mile 10, I felt like I was riding over a bump every couple of yards. When we stopped to regrouped, I had a look at it and my tire had a bubble. We had technical support riding with us and he said, I'll be fine, but I have to be careful on the downhills, because it will be just a question of time until I blow out my tube. On my way back home, I stopped by at Sunshine and they switched my tire out.... It was a warranty issue and I didn't have to pay a thing.

After the ride, the group went down to the lake to also swim the swim course. I didn't know that this was planned, so I didn't have swim stuff with me. But I walked down with the group to at least have a look around.

Later they said that there is a lot of seaweed in the water and the water is also pretty warm. The distance from swim exit to transition is 1/3 of a mile and it's partially uphill on pretty loose gravel. So you have to have shoes there.

After that, I set out to run the run course. I ended up not doing the whole course, just 2/3rds of it. By the time I should have turned to run the out and back, I just had a little bit of water left in my bottle and I was also pretty hungry.

I am glad, that I had the opportunity to go up there and have a look around. They have another pre ride and swim next Sunday, I'll see if I am doing that trip again.

I just had enough time to drive back home (stop over bike shop), grab a shower and then head out to watch
Germany playing Uruguay for 3rd place in the World Cup! And they WON!!! Sweet!

Okay, I am dead tired and tomorrow is yet again an early wake-up call, because I want to get my long run out of the way before church.

So long! ;-)

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