Monday, May 24, 2010

Indie Series #1: Whidbey Island Mudder

The 2010 Indie Series kicked off with what was rumored to be the last installment of the Whidbey Island Mudder. GL6 got the party started right; we pre-rode the course on Saturday, then set up camp and chilled with some BBQ and beer as we prepped our metal steeds for the race the next day. Not many other racers openly challenged the ominous weather report to camp in the open field Saturday night; we were one of three groups to camp on-site. We retired to our tent/camper/car under a clear sky and the soft white eye of a waxing moon, but were awoken from sleep several hours later by the predicted volley of rain. The morning air was chill and damp as Theresa and rest of the beginner class prepared for their 10 am race start, but the adverse weather had improved the course drastically. The speed-sucking sandy pits of previous years were tamed by the overnight rain, and the course was still in great shape by the time the sport racers hit it at 2 pm.

The course dished up the same fare as previous years, but if it ain't broke, don't fix it. This was a relentlessly fast, intense course that required nearly as much mental focus as physical stamina. The course wound through stands of young alder trees that grabbed at rider's handlebars, up over aptly named "anthills" and down some ripping doubletrack filled with whoopties to keep it interesting. There were ample places to pass, but racers were never by themselves; I constantly fought to pass the person ahead of me while another racer was simultaneously breathing down my neck. This competition demanded constant focus and coaxed every last bit of energy from each racer. What a great race!!

Mike made his season debut in the Clydesdale class, where he took an impressive 6th out 12 competitors. Theresa returned in full effect after her ankle injury, taking 5th in Beginner Women 19+ after a hard battle. Erica and Kyle raced their first race in the Expert class, and Erin raced her first Indie Series race in the sport category. Bernie looked the most badass after his finish, with blood oozing from several scratches on his arms and legs, and a bloodstain blossoming on the right side of his jersey; despite a couple crashes, he still rocked into 5th place in the incredibly competitive expert class. Kyle kept up with the big boys in expert (on his rigid singlespeed no less!) and John returned to the racing scene in the sport category. GL6 2010!!!

Expert Men 36-44
Bernie Miller, 6th

Expert Women 19-34
Erica Keller, 3rd

Expert U-18
Kyle Curtin, 1st

Sport Women 19-34
Erin Roe, 5th

Sport Men
John Curtin 25th

Clydesdale Men
Mike Scholl, 6th

Beginner Women 19+
Theresa Nation 5th

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