At the start of the Bailey Hundo 100-mile mountain bike race.

I was pleasantly surprised when the gun went off at 6 AM. I actually had good legs for the first time in 6 weeks. Literally, a gun was shot to signify the start of the 4th annual Bailey Hundo after a quick speech from a couple of our local politicians who support cycling. Bailey Hundo is more than a race, it supports Trips for Kids and Colorado High School Cycling.

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My camp spot the night before

I had been at sea level for over a month, and home for 6 days at mile high before Bailey Hundo.  I definitely felt the altitude the whole race.  I would basically get to 10 beats below threshold heartrate, and it would feel like my throat was closing so I’d have to slow down.  I was a bit frustrated that I couldn’t push harder without suffocating and instantly thought of people who live at sea level full time and race at altitude.

I found myself leading the race up the first 7 miles of dirt road and into the singletrack.  I was riding near the same group of guys for awhile, but I was not riding the loose trail very well after being accustomed to huge rocky east coast riding.  I overshot a couple corners and was not riding as fast as I should have been.  The trail had 3-4 inches worth of loose sand/dirt.  It’s definitely the worst it’s ever been, drier than ever, and people were talking about it at the finish!  I’d pass guys on the climb and they’d need by on the DH.

 

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Course profile

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The great news is I have basically nothing to report!  I loved my carbon 29 hardtail.  It was the 2nd ride on it and the first time I had been on a carbon mountain bike in over a year.  It was a couple pounds ligher than the aluminum hardtail I’ve been racing all along. I ‘m so thankful for a 21 lb bike!  The bike I was racing on the east coast was 26lbs! (100mm full suspension) so it was a wonderful change!

There was great support at the frequent aide stations.  I stopped a couple times for cold coke at the Stony Pass aide stations.  It was really hot. There was even a girl with a little mini washer- I had her put out the fire on my foot (my bunion) with cold water.  I’m sure she loved that!

I rode one pace from start to finish without having any tired or dark moments.  The altitude limited my ability to overpush and was actually a blessing!

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Finish Line

I ended up taking my 3rd win at the Bailey Hundo which I really wanted to do!  I also beat the course record from last year by a mere 30 seconds and was excited about that!  It was a great day on the bike, a challenging course, WONDERFUl support (special thanks to Pat Mayben and my buddies at Primal)

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Live band, beer, and free food!

 

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Podium

My race time was 7:32.  Full results HERE.  I was first in the women, and 22nd overall out of 232 riders.  Stoked!

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Molly took 2nd.  I hadn’t seen her since my XC racing days way back when.   She is making the switch to the endurance scene too.  Tammy Sadle took 3rd and that’s Pat Mayben in the background.

I had to rush off after the awards to Aspen, CO.  I used the Chamois Butt’r Sports Wash to freshen up and it was great!

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I loaded up the car and headed to catch the last day of the Aspen Food and Wine Festival with David Phillips of Michael David Winery — they make the BEST red zinfandels!

Monday morning, I drove to Durango for some shop visits and got to spend some time with my friends Shannon and Kenny.

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