I was also feeling a little more relaxed about tactics. Some really smart-crazy people had published online that a 24 hour should be broken up into 3 distinct competitions. The first is not really even a race, its who is the freshest and strongest at the 10 hour mark. The second hinges upon who can get through the night the best and the third part, covering the last 6 hours is a bona-fide balls-out red lights flashing mountain bike race.
And add the last little piece of calmness to the scenario, our pit crew had set up camp in a golden spot, perched right on the hairpin that signified the halfway point of Pit Lane. It mean that all the hard work was done to get there and once refreshed and refueled, a rider had a tailwind and a downhill run down to the singletrack.
|Pit Crew HQ - 85% built|
|Dancing with the Stars, Matt Page with Kev and me|
Now feeling somewhat more relaxed than I should, I snapped myself into race mode, lathered up with about a litre of sunburn cream and chamois cream in no particular order, did a pointlessly brief warmup and rolled down to the starting line.
The starting chute for a 24 is a strange beast. In stage races and 6 hour enduros, the pointy end is straining against the fabric of the invisible line like a nipple in a Southerly. Instead we were all very chilled, even the usual embarrassing chatter born of pre-race nerves was surprisingly AWOL.
We held a moments silence for Kane Vandenberg who fatally crashed the day before and watched the pros roll away with their entitled 10 minute head start.
|See you cats tomorrow...the Wembo starting chute|