Friday night I watched some of the Opening Ceremonies for the Olympics. What I saw was fantastic, I think the Chinese organizers did a really nice job.
While I wanted to watch all of the ceremonies, I needed to get some sleep. I knew a 4:45 am wake-up call would be the start of a long day on Saturday at the Leadville 100 Mountain Bike Race.
I posted that Lance Armstrong did indeed show up to the pre-race meeting. He was discounting his race ability, compared to five-time champion Dave Wiens. Dave, however, knew better than to think Lance would do anything other than try to win.
Meanwhile, on the women's side of the race, very few people knew that Susan Williams was racing. Regular blog readers knew Susan was racing, but not many others did. When we were driving up to pre-ride the course, Susan asked what my time goal was and I told her 10:30. She said that was her time goal too, on the advice of someone that knew her.
"No Susan, you will go faster than 10:30," I told her.
She asked if she could line up with me at the start line and I told her, "Of course, you're welcome to start with me...but you ride your own race and do not pace off of me."
I told my husband after the pre-ride that Susan is well-capable of a sub-9 finish; but I don't know how she'll ride this year after running around 30 miles in a 24-hour relay the week before the Leadville event.
The rain the day before the race put the course in perfect condition. Race morning was cool and overcast, not too cold. Perfect!
Below are shots of people outbound at Twin Lakes, getting ready for the Columbine climb...
Roy Gatesman (441)
Todd Kornfield (his fiancé Jen is crewing)
More shots home bound after Columbine Mine....
Del, my husband and great race support with me
The short story is most everyone had a good race. Two guys that missed the cut-off last year, got their shiny buckles this year. They both had plenty of time to spare.
As most of you know by now, Dave Wiens was the first place male. At the awards ceremony, Lance gave a really nice speech and complimented race organizers as well as Dave. "Not many guys can ride me off of their wheel, but this guy did," Lance said. Lance continued to say something else complimentary about Dave, but I don't recall his exact words.
The women's champion was Susan Williams. Did she race faster than 10:30? Ah, yeah...try an 8:40. I guess running more than a marathon the week before the race isn't a bad idea after all.
Below is a shot of Susan Williams and her two girls, Dave Wiens, his wife Susan (DeMatti) and their three boys.
Several of my buddies got more good photos, but I don't have them yet. If you're a subscriber to the blog, you will be notified when new photos are posted to this blog or to a new one.
As for my race, I did make my 10:30 goal with a bit of time to spare at 10:27. I could have lived without an hour of rain near the end of the race, but given the rest of the day's weather, I won't complain.
My second goal was to get on the podium to score one of those nifty mining pans. I managed to do that as well.
I can't say/write enough about the incredible support I received during the race. The crowd support was fantastic. At the base of Columbine Mine there were two little girls standing on the edge of the road screaming, "Girl power!!! You rock!!!" That was really cool.
Lots of people got me to smile with their encouraging words. It's nice to smile during a ride like Leadville.
I rode with some really terrific guys that helped me achieve my race goals. I told several of you I owe you a beer post-race and I'm more than willing to pay on that promise. Seriously, you guys were awesome.
I think people can post photos in the comment section. Give it a shot. If you can't send me your photos and I'll post them in the blog.
Thanks to Ken and Merilee for another great race.
Cool video from Superhuman Magazine - thanks for the heads-up, Scott