Took a trip out to Canmore Nordic Centre for the Organ Grinder 5-hour enduro race Sunday June 13. I hadn't raced in Canmore since the last World Cup race though did do a trail or two in the last section of Transrockies 2005. Lots of new trails.
Wicked course... expected lap times 45 min for 11.5 km. It had the best of the best technical trails in it... laundry chute and devonian drop from World Cup days... new vertical crazy drop eye-dropper (with an easy option to go around)... super fun rolling in/out trail pumptrack... crazy 4-section triple-arrow descent ass-whooper... epic Georgetown ascent... which made it a super fun challenging course.
photo from bikealberta.com - eyedropper trail
After a good start, I had a comedy of errors... missed the wooden plank at the bottom of Devonian drop and got tossed. Ok, though spent time twisting back handlebars and getting air into my tire. Then, doh took a wrong turn though realized pretty quick and backtracked. Started passing riders again.
At the transition area, topped off my wheel with air (valve stem was bent and leaked air slowly)... into the next loop, stopped yet again to put air in with my CO2. By now, I was back in the field. I chilled out riding the technical sections safely. Any catching up to was done in the climbing sections, my strength, and I started re-passing riders again. I felt fresh!
Each time the finish area was passed, riders had to dismount and run with the bike around the timers before re-mounting. Into lap 3, I was excited to get back on with a cyclocross mount and started accelerating focussing on the orange area in my sight ahead, the colour of the bridge overpasses in the biathlon area. I put my head down for a second and when I looked up I realized the orange area was not the exit to the trails but was the only orange barrier amongst the grey ones! I remember correcting my line to avoid it.
Next, I was being asked who I was, where I was, what I was doing! I was on the ground with blood from my eyebrow. To make things worse, I kept being told I had been eating a banana and crashed with only one hand on the handlebar! There was a banana at the scene but it wasn't mine. I guess it helped create a logical reason why I crashed. If anyone claims to have given me a banana I'll go with it. I know I did not eat a banana. So, I was confused for abit 'cause I could not recall the darn fictitious banana!
I was helped kindly by a crew of people... the woman EMT, Kris Dahl driving me to the hospital, Tessa keeping tabs on me, Ingrid Dahl checking in, Ed Garvin helping find me a ride back to Calgary with Tim B. The Canmore hospital staff were awesome and efficient.
Quite a bummer being in the most awesome technical race and crashing in the least likely spot on the pavement in the feedzone. I was bummed not to get to complete the race. My actual lap times were decent despite the extra time with mechanicals. Next year!!
Results of my CT scan that took an in-efficient 14-hours to get at Emergency U of A hospital on a slow night! A few fresh new structures to my right cheekbone and orbital.
Healing well and will take any positive energy sent my way!