wow, it's so different from last year. Instead of a park-sized slip-and-slide mud game, much of it was actually rideable. Unfortunately the really fun stuff - short steep power climbs - were tainted with manmade stairs. Goofy. But, 2x4's aside, the course was a lot of fun. The ground was still slightly damp which will make it a power course where you need to be on the gas at all times. Once you stop pedaling, the bike stops too.
There were a couple of tricky turns that i worked on a few times. But other than that, it's straightforward. It was fun to pre-ride with a few hundred people on the course. It somewhat simulated traffic congestion in a real race, save for a few elbows thrown my way.
The race starts at the bottom of a gradual paved uphill, which should slightly thin out the field - just in time for the deathtrap transition onto the dirt. We make a right turn up a concrete curb and onto the grass. They "installed" a pseudo ramp which doesn't really make the transition any safer. I expect carnage at this spot. Note to self: must be in front going over the ramp. I just found out today that i will be called up 2nd to the start line (katie comption - current national champ) is called up first. So at least with a front row starting position, my chances are increased that I'll make it to the dangerous curb in the front group. But it will still require a lot of self-inflicted pain to make it happen!
For anyone watching the event, my race number is 202 - you know, just in case you can't spot me in the Wonder Bread-themed Lotto-Belisol kit.
That's all for the moment.