Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Fat Bike Birkie, 2015

3rd year. Good time racing, spending time with Lynn and with friends. From 200 races in year 1 to 400 in year 2 to 850 in year 3. Goal is 5,000?? YIKES!
The trail held up well, until the last 10k where the short race made it's turn to go back. Then there was a single groove in the snow and the rest of the trail was pretty soft.

16th out of 85 in the 50-59 year age bracket. I switch age divisions next year......I was the fastest 59 year old with my time faster than the winner of the 60 and above bracket....a guys gotta have a goal!

 Won some swag.

The Start.
Photo Credit, Fat Bike Birkie.

8.5k into the race, 1st aid station.
Photo credit, Craig Smith.

Double "OO" turn to head back.
Photo credit, Fat Bike Birkie.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Friday, March 6, 2015

Jason's first Fat Bike race. Sweaty Yeti 2015

Exposed grandson to his first fat bike race. The Sweaty Yeti at Levis-Trow.

Jason was watched over by friends while I raced. My original plans was to be on a team to be able to take time off the trail, but at the last minute our team went all solo. Was then planning on just doing a few laps and hanging out with Jason but every time around the 20-25 minute laps, plus we pass the start/finish during the race, so I got to see Jason every 10 minutes or so and as he was doing fine, I went more and more and got deeper into race mode.

After the race we got to try out a kids 24" fat bike a friend brought.

Gotta do s-mores.

Gramps out on the race.
We had matching furry helmets.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Birkie 2015

I signed up in early Fall for the Birkie, before it filled up, but was concerned about skiing at all much less racing with my shoulder/clavical healing. I'd spent a lot of time on the fat bike this winter, 4 ultras in 6 weeks (1-2-25 to 2-14-15) 485 miles....did well I think, placing 3rd, 4th, 15th and 18th place. 
Plus finished 5th at the Badger State Games 21 mile race so that was 506 miles in 6 weeks not counting any training miles. None of these races have age divisions. 
That said I believe only one guy within 10-12 years of my age beat me and he was within 9 years. He did that at the Arrowhead135.  He was 50 and finished 4th.
So, didn't roller ski or snow ski once this fall/winter and decided not to do the birkie but then Doug, my buddy from Appleton, WI contacted me about flying up again so I said yeah, pick me up. Figured it would be a fun flight up and I'd just ski around the lake some until the race was over.....well, the more I thought about it the more I figured they won't want me on the trail so was thinking where to ski late friday night as I drifted off to sleep.

My alarm was set for 5AM to get the Stevens Point airport and I woke up at 4AM thinking, what the heck, go registor and pickup your race bag/bib and just start the race. If the shoulder bothers, pull out, so that's what I did. 
I didn't have my best skis and didn't bother doing a great wax job but just stepped off the plane basically, got dressed and took off...kind of slow and easy for the first few miles feeling things out as Doug and I stuck together, then just started skiing like normal.
The shoulder never bothered me....took me 4:18 but felt that was fine, had a good time and finished feeling good. A little slower than average, but not bad.

This was my 10th Birkie. Conditions were very good as for temps. Snow was a bit soft and deep in a few spots but over all I think it was very good.

 3/4 of the way there. Near my hunting land, Catawba, WI.

Coming in for the landing, Telemark Lodge. Which is just about ready to be razed. 

Loading up after the race.

Lifting up over the now vacant start line. 10,000 skiers started from here.

 Homeward Bound.