*photo by Dahron Johnson
I had found out about this race because Gabriel had recently gotten involved in an organization based out of Nashville called, “Ride For Reading.” It is a group who hosts book drives (book rides) and various other fundraisers including this race for kids at underprivileged elementary schools. Eating doughnuts and racing mountain bikes to benefit kids is a pretty kick arse way to spend one’s Saturday.
When I had planned on doing this race I actually had a mountain bike and had no idea that I was going to outgrow my entry level steed and have to sell it to get myself a new one! It was alright though because at that point I had been riding my awesome new to me cyclocross bike on all my regular mountain bike trails I ride during the week. I had found its magical fork could handle things better than my old mountain bike and it weighed 18 lbs opposed to whooping 35. Gabriel had talked to folks on the wall of the Facebook event page and many said that this trail, Lock 4 Dam, was “do-able” on a CX bike. So, we both brought our CX bikes!
We get there and I’m feeling pretty good. The atmosphere is relaxed and I’m boosted to check out these trails I’ve never been on before while dining on some friggin’ delectable Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Everybody seemed pretty chill too except for the women. WTF?! It was a large field and a lot of fast heavy hitters where there all lined up. I had even recognized a sandbaggin’ M***** f*****’ lady from the Jim Miller CX race the week previous. The hell was she doing here?! Whatever. I had done pretty well at that CX race getting 7th out of 21 women and beating some good respectable women.
*photo by Dahron Johnson
I got a good start on the grass and got in a pretty decent position into the singletrack. Some women were being really aggressive and passing the line of people at the beginning. I could have passed them as well but I didn’t mind their pace and I had never ridden these trails. I started to pass the slower folks and felt very much in the groove until a girl had stopped at a crest of a steep hill causing the folks in front of me and behind me to pile up. We all cussed a little and when back to riding. I get behind this female riding a Yeti in some f*****’ Jorts with her gahdamned lacy thong hangin’ out for all to see. I first thought to myself, “ The Hell?! Nashville’s hipsters have infiltrated the mountain biking scene? Wild.” I’m literally right on her ass until the first doughnut stop.
I play it casual and eat one doughnut. I know that it sounded like a good idea to eat doughnuts and mountain bike but my stomach didn’t think so, besides I see that skanky ho go for another one and I didn’t want to get behind that again. You know I don’t want any gahdamned eye VD or some mess. We are all spread out by now and I had heard all them real serious ladies had not even stopped at the first doughnut stand. I am riding all alone and I see that nasty Yeti girl cut an entire section of course!! Saw her go under the ribbons and everything. “The f*** does she think this is?! A mountain bike alleycat?” I thought to myself. I brushed it off, freakin ho.
I’m still rocking the CX bike until I get to a segment of "worse than all of South loop" rock garden. It wasn’t too long though and even managed to get up the next one with ease and without a flat while going around folks who had to walk up it! The backside of this course got real technical and I noticed while I had a huge advantage of riding my lighter bike going up climbs, but some of the descents where pretty sketchy on my CX bike. I did well and caught up to a lady I had lost at the beginning after the grand pile up. We rode together for most of the way till until the last doughnut stop in which she had decided not to get any doughnut (which was smarter). I reluctantly got another doughnut down and it took terribly long to insure that I wouldn't up chuck it. The short segment to the end was super fun and flowy!
Afterwards I got to meet some nice ladies who were impressed with how well I rode some of the stuff on my “skinny” wheels and I got to be an ambassador for cyclocross and let them try out my bike! However much fun I had on my cyclocross bike, I'm really anxious to go back and ride these trails on my new mountain bike! :D Also, I really love the crap out of my Maxxis Mudwrestler tires. Even though it was only muddy in a few areas I really like the traction they provide when riding a CX on a mountain bike trail!
Gabriel rocking the Ride for Reading jersey *photo by Dahron Johnson