By: Dr. Eric Marcotte
This weekend I wanted to compete in the Barn Burner 104 mile mtb race in Flagstaff, AZ. I thought it a great time to not have a lot of pressure and get out of the 110+degree temperatures arriving in Phoenix/Scottsdale.
Coming off of racing 6 races in the last 2 weeks, the long endurance ride (6.5hrs + ) would be a good way to keep that base mileage up for the next couple of very important weeks for us.
The race starts with a Le Mans start with us running a couple hundred meters to our bikes, then onto the the 26 mile loop. It was on from the gun, a select group of 3 of us then it swelled to 8. Realizing this is at 8000ft, and going to be a long day in the saddle, I wanted to minimize the damage to my body. So I just matched efforts. After a technical rocky descent, I was slowly getting a rear flat. I had to stop and fix w/ a tube/tire and got back on it. Riding my own pace, however, there was such an incredible amount of dust with it being so dry it was difficult to see. Pop, another rear flat. No more CO2’s or tubes. So I start walking. The MTB scene is awesome, where else do people willingly stop in a race and give you CO2/Tubes?
I go through the first lap, and concede quite a bit of time, so I feel I’ll just get a good ride in and continue on. Not a mile later, my 3rd rear flat. Yes, Something was in the rim. So I decide to call it a day, and get out on the road bike to log some more time in the saddle.
I feel it better, as our team has a huge swing of very important races coming up, I’d like to be healthy going into them to help us accomplish some good results. If i were to stick it out and drain myself physically, and load up on bad air, I could be sick and run down like some of the other competitors are feeling today.
I love the race, and will always look to do it, It is a LeadVille qualifier and run by RedRockCO, who does a great job with it. Getting bigger and better each year. I just hope Mother Nature can help out with a little rain a day or two prior 🙂
Look for some good results from the guys in the next couple weeks with Tulsa Tough, Nature Valley Grand Prix, and Elite Nationals coming up.
At this point, I had to stop and fix the tire.