I can hardly believe that cyclocross season is coming to and end.
Months of hard work.......... all boil down to a few hours of riding this coming weekend. I ofter feel like the skinny guy in the picture. Standing at the line in Kansas...I will be looking around at the super stars of our sport. The past 365 days have been spent getting ready. I am prepared to throw down 2 of the best rides of my life ......the question is where will that put me. I have to be honest and say that is one of the hardest parts about our sport. Cycling is pretty cruel sometimes. We all have a ton of excuses why we didn't do better. The problem is almost every weekend we have an excuse and rarely a result. That is when our personal expectations might not match our ability. When I was a kid my parents didn't tell me I was the best or the fastest. I appreciate their honesty. If you look through my results you can see I am not the fastest and certainly not the best. For some reason at 32 years old I am still heading to races all over the country to prove this exact point. So if I am not going to win... why do I go? I think the answer is I like take a good beating. Every once in awhile I get a chance to hand one out. The other 99% of the time I have to take it. There is something great about getting your ass kicked. Not during the ass-kicking... that is when it hurts. But sometime shortly after I start to feel great. Not just great... I feel incredible. This is when I start to plan for next year in hopes of getting my ass a little less kicked. I don't think you can appretiate how hard something is until you are out there on the recieving end. We are involved in one of the few sports where you can actually stand on the 50 yard line with some of the greatest riders on the planet and see how bad we actually are.
A few days back someone(non racer) was talking to my wife about a cyclocross world-cup they saw on the internet. They mentioned the riders looked slow and didn't have the best handling. I got tweaked. To judge Sven Nys.... that is insane. If it looked slow .... then I can't imagine what a mortal would have looked like on the course. To critique riders with a VO2 max of almost 100 and say they look SLOW.... that blows me away. If Sven is jogging you would have to CRAWL...
I think I am headed to Kansas so I know "how good..... I am not."
The crazy thing is I am completey OK with that. And I know I will train for 365 more days just to do it again.