I always love racing at the Dirt Club outside Los Olivos. The trails are fast and in great shape, there’s plenty of parking, the weather is usually awesome, and the route is all singletrack…oh, and it’s in wine country.
We lined up for the endurance race and the gun went off at 10am. The earliest races of the day had just finished and we had the course to ourselves to start. The pace was immediately set by Gareth Feldstein and I hopped on his wheel, followed closely by Timmy Eaton and Stephane Roch. Wes Rasmussen bridged the gap after the first climb and it was pretty much the four of us pace lining along. On the third lap the Cat 2 race started and we were caught in a huge cluster F. There were riders everywhere and I quickly sped through the field to try to get to the front before the big climb. Timmy, Gareth and I made it through and Wes and Stephane disappeared into the chaos.
It was survival of the fittest. Around and around we went. Timmy cracked on the fourth lap and Gareth and I soldiered on, passing riders as we went. At the end of the fourth lap Gareth attacked hard. I was hoping he miscounted his laps and thought we were finishing but his speed picked up into the fifth lap. I couldn’t hand on. He looked so fresh and I was feeling the distance and didn’t have the speed in the legs.