I had a very mediocre result at the Big M race yesterday. It was a good race, just my effort was more mediocre than usual.
My heart just wasn’t into racing this weekend. The Big M course happens to be on the way to Traverse City where we were dropping off the kids for the week. I vaguely remember doing this race before and liking the layout. It is a hilly cross country ski trail and I think hilly cross country ski trails make the best race courses. I casually mentioned something to Renee about doing this race and she immediately preregistered for it. It doesn’t take much to talk her into racing.
It took 45 minutes longer than I planned to get the kids herded up and into the car Sunday morning. Add a few unscheduled pit stops and I didn’t think I was going to make the race, which would have been fine. We accidentally made good time so I had Cindy call Renee to see if she was serious about racing in the rain. She was.
Just after I picked up my race packet, Renee called and said she was running behind and didn’t think she was going to make it. While I was on the line ready to take off, it started to pour, the kind of rain where you can only see a few yards in front of you. I thought: “Oh man, this sucks”.
I raced hard for the first lap, almost clocked a tree at the bottom of a long muddy downhill, and decided to stop racing and just ride for fun. And it was fun. The sun came out halfway through the race and the trail was great, maybe a little slick. There was no pressure to place. This season is a wash but I’m OK with that. Next year I will come out swinging. Or I will ride just for fun. I’m good either way.
The value of racing for me is just knowing I have a race coming up; it's in the back of my mind on those days I am on the fence about riding, or when I am choosing what I want for lunch. The race itself is just a means to an end.