Lets start with a little history lesson:
Sleepless in the Saddle 2006: 6th place solo
Mountain Mayhem 2007: 6th place solo
Sleepless in the Saddle 2007: 6th place solo
Mountain Mayhem 2008: have a chuffing guess.
I mean really?! What’s going on?!
Wayne’s support for the whole race – as well as being DJ in the way home – meant i didn’t die a death, despite my stomach doing it’s “I’m not allowing you to consume anything” trick again. He also kept the bikes going brilliantly so I never had to worry about slipping gears or owt like that and he steadfastly refused to complain or look miserable for the whole race. I don’t know how he does it; I’d have gone mental if some grumpy looking sod stumbled into the pits at 3am and demanded I sort the tyres out and raise the saddle a bit while he just sat there gazing vacantly at the floor!
I’m going to moan a bit now, just to warn you
The course started out stupidly congested and never really quietened down (i think they let too many people race TBH). It wouldn’t be so bad if everyone was experienced at racing, but a lot of the racers are “noobs” and throughout the 24hrs you’d get processions of riders 5 or 6 people long trailing each other through all the singletrack sections. This isn’t so bad when you’ve got enough energy and strength to power past the whole group, but 18hrs in I couldn’t get past that many people in one go so ended up having to tag onto the back of the conga line on several occasions. That kinda sucked.
I’m not going to maon about how unridable the course got, because I’ve raced there 3 times now and knew exactly what it would be like. I fitted (or, more accurately, ‘Wayne fitted while i sat gazing vacantly at the floor’) 32c cyclocross tyres to the scandal as they were the only tyres that wouldn’t clog the frame with mud and that seemed to work quite well, although i’m a bit gutted that all the stodge getting pulled across the frame by the cranks managed to wear away some of the anodizing on the previously new looking frame:
It certainly wasn’t all bad though, the course (when ridable) was good fun…not particularly technical but fun nontheless. There was a really good vibe in the solo tent and for the most part it was the same out on the course – though i think a few people who aren’t used to racing brough some pretty crappy attitudes with them. “Team On-One” rocked, with all of us getting right up there in the results despite the conditions/stomach issues etc.
The results are up on the mountain mayhem site for you to peruse…i dont remember taking 3hrs 13mins for 1 lap, but it does seem to have taken place in the middle of the night, so maybe that’s not too suprising!
I’m off to eat lots of cake now, as i think i’m owed a few calories!