Apr 19, 2010

Baker's Dozen 2010

Report by Petr Minar

Baker's Dozen 2010 - Start from Tom Jackson on Vimeo.

The race took place by Leesburg town in VA on the private farm by Potomac River on April, 17. This is one of the newer races (put on by Plug Grove Cyclery bike shop) but quickly became very popular and this year sold out in record 50 minutes after the race opened for registration on Bikereg. The participants limit reached about 425 people that quickly. This is endurance type of mountain bike race. Participants could choose from solo racing, 2 person and 3 person of various combinations of male and female formats.
I raced solo, which was first time for me to do any such long race. Until now the longest riding experience for me was Shenandoah mountain 100 mile course in about 10 hours. The day of the race was chili and very windy. In the evening we got temperatures below 40. Race started at 9 AM with massive start of huge field. Each soloist and team had to make a many 8+ miles laps as possible. After 10 PM no more racers could start their new lap and all other racers on the course could finish their current lap.
Doing a long race like this (I rode for 13.5 hours and over 160 miles) is physical and mental challenge. I finished the race with 19 laps total in time over 13.5 hours and took 7th place out of 82 man solo racers. First 10 laps seemed to be OK as far as motivation goes. The most critical laps for me were between 10 and 16 when body starts feeling the fatigue and finish is still way far. I started taking longer brakes which cost me probably couple spots in final ranking. Last 4 laps were again a bit easier as the finish is getting closer.
I have learned new things during this race. Mostly what is good to eat during these long endurance races, when the body really does not want to accept just any food. For me worked... bananas, grapes, dried mango, dried pineapple, mix of nuts, Hammer bars, lost of Endurolite tablets and lots of Hammer Perpetuem...
Also it seems that longer brakes (20-30 mins) are not necessarily better than short 3-5 minutes brakes, as the body is not getting much desired rest anyway and only cools down in the excessive time. Camping/ sharing tent with friends also helps as they can give moral support but also can delay you in pit for longer time than necessary.

Overall this was tough race for solo riding but I am happy I have done.

Resuts by category can be found here.
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