Friday, August 5, 2011

Suicide 6 Test Run

I took a vacation day and went to Harriet Hollister Spencer Park just south of Honeoye Lake. I had never been there and I wanted to see what the trails were like. This should help me determine if I am attending the Suicide 6 mountain bike race.

The trails were not marked all that well, though I occasionally found a sign with a trail name. There are double-track dirt roads weaving throughout the park and the trails intersect these. Normally single track is preferred, but some of the race is on these double-track roads. Knowing when to turn off the double-track was tricky, but the route should be well marked for the race.

I did have two maps with me. One was the race map, which is not to scale, and another was a trail map with more trail names on it. My ride roughly followed the race map, but it looks like I did the southeastern Sidewinder trail backwards and bigger. I think part of that deviation was a long downhill followed by a long hill climb, of course. I had to walk much of that climb, so it will be great if it's not actually part of the course! I also missed a turn and had to backtrack a bit, shown in the middle north section of my trail map.

Each race lap is said to be 6.7 miles, and I did about 7.5. Those deviations add up.

I got a charlie horse in my right calf about 80% into my ride. It was just like I had at a race a few months ago. I rolled around on the trail and moaned for a minute before I could stand up and start walking. Those things are excruciating! I was soon able to ride, but I was cautious not to stress my ride calf. I think I may have tilted my right foot down too much during a climb. I was drinking a lot of water, so I don't think I was dehydrated.

So the big question is, will I race? Hmm. There were plenty of times during my ride that I leaned towards not racing. But once I was done, it felt like it was possible. To race and finish in the S6, I have to start at the start, and be out riding at the 6 hour mark. It look like it would take me about 2 hours for a race lap. So, at that speed I could theoretically do 3 laps in the 6 hours. But that would be suicide! Instead, it probably would be smarter to do 2 laps, one at the beginning and one at the end, with about a 2 hour rest in-between.

I need to think about it some more. The upcoming weather forecasts for August 14th will also help me decide.

Muni at Harriet Hollister Spencer - 2011-08-05

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