There are some rides where you just have a bad day. You just don’t want this to happen on one of your “A” races. Unfortunately, this is what happened to me. I have been working/training hard to race well at Sattley. I was really looking forward to it, and my TT times were improving. Howard and I got to the course around 3:00 p.m. the day before and the wind was howling. I wasn’t too concerned because I knew the wind would calm down for my 8:07:30 start time. I did my usual prerace spin to check out gearing for start. I had Howard hold me for a couple of practice starts. I felt really good.
After my spin, we decided to take a quick drive around the valley. We had done this last year, and Sierra Valley is beautiful. Because of the late winter and lots of water, the wildflowers were blooming away. Half way through the center of the valley, we got a flat tire in the car. The road is kind of in the middle of nowhere, and we knew we would have to change it ourselves. We figured we could do it faster than Triple A would take to get there. We had to unload the car of all my biking gear and bike and line it up along side the road as there was no place to pull off. The fields were flooded on either side of us. We got out the manual and soon the tire was changed and we were on our way. It is one of those small “donut” tires, so 50 mph was the limit.
We stopped for dinner at my favorite little Mexican place, and I ate the same thing I had last year. Then off to the cabin and fell asleep by the sound of rushing water from the nearby creek.
I woke up at 5:00 a.m., with a searing burn in my stomach and intestines. Not good. I could not keep any food in me and coffee was definitely a no-no. I was bummed but determined to race. I thought maybe by the time the race actually started I would feel better. I did – what I thought – considering the circumstances – a pretty good warm up. But every time I took a sip of water or tried to drink some Sustained Energy, my stomach started gurgling and I . . . well lets just say I couldn’t keep any food with me. I started the race on an empty tank. I tried my hardest given the circumstances, but I knew I was in trouble when at the turn around, I saw Phyllis, then Narda then Mary Ellen not too far away. Every time I slowed, I would kick myself to go faster. Mentally, my heart was into this, but physically, I was just not there. I came in 4th out of 5.
Disappointed, yes. Did I beat myself up a little, yes. Did I ask myself was there something differently I could have done, yes. Would I like a rerun – absolutely ☺! However, it is what it is, and the other 3 ladies – Mary Ellen Allen – 1st; Phyllis Olrich 2nd, and Narda 3rd, rode a very good race. I'm putting this one behind me and looking forward to the next race.