The View From "C" Class - 2010 NCHSA Series

Discussion in 'Racing' started by nobrakes, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. eatpasta

    eatpasta Lawnmower Target

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    oh and good on ya for getting up that bottleneck hill!!

    :thumb

    I wouldnt be surprised to see trials bikes out there!
    #81
  2. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    Thanks! It gets a little crazy in those things. Would have been up a lot quicker if people didn't keep running into me. :lol3

    Speaking of trials bikes, this was my project for this evening. :evil This at the recommendation of some of the faster "B" class guys in the afternoon race, they seem to swear buy them.

    [​IMG]


    And I replaced my Kenda Southwick II sand tire with something a little more appropriate for the mountains: :deal

    [​IMG]


    I'll admit, those TireBalls are nice when it comes to having to not think about flats, but I think I'm starting to miss tubes when it comes to changing tires. :bluduh


    The next race is the infamous "Flat Rock" this coming Sunday. It's only infamous because last year it was a real tough course, and 12 inches of rain in the days prior sure made it even more interesting. I'm hoping for good weather this time around.
    #82
  3. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    It may look shady and cool, but in reality it's 100 degrees in the shade and 99% humidity. Your goggles will fog up just from mild exertion, let alone huffing and puffing on the climbs or god forbid, you drop your bike on one of those hills shooting your heart rate to 190+. Last year at Flat Rock, my goggles were fogging badly in similar conditions and I even stopped for a few minutes while trying to pull the nose guard off them because it was hindering my breathing and catching on my helmet. I couldn't see shite. About that time I was wondering if I could install a tiny little fan on my goggles for some forced air circulation - it was like a sauna back in those woods. The low humidity of the desert would have been welcome. :lol3
    #83
  4. eatpasta

    eatpasta Lawnmower Target

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    yeah... I can see how that would suck.

    Funny how those guys run trails rubber..... that would work there and im sure the Desert IT MAxxis tires probably wouldnt be very good out there.

    :lol3

    I have massive chunks out of these MAXXIS tires after two races - not even 100 miles. The desert RUINS tires.
    #84
  5. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    As I get ready for the next race which is tomorrow, here is the 2nd part of the helmet cam from the last race, Brushy Mountain, for your viewing enjoyment. This is the 2nd and 3rd laps, trimmed for length. As you'll see, the first bottleneck was not even an issue on these laps, thought he 2nd bottleneck area still caused problems for some.

    In case the embed code doesn't work, try this link: http://www.vimeo.com/11756533

    <object width="800" height="530"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><param name="movie" value="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11756533&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=0&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF&amp;fullscreen=1" /><embed src="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11756533&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=0&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF&amp;fullscreen=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" width="800" height="530"></embed></object><p><a href="http://vimeo.com/11756533">2010 NCHSA Rd 3 - Brushy Mountain Hare Scramble, Part II</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user555192">bsd512</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p><p>The 2nd and 3rd laps from the Brushy Mountain hare scramble.</p>
    #85
  6. DC950

    DC950 Microadventurer

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    :lurk
    #86
  7. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    I got back late last night and did not get a chance to update, then had to work today.

    I ended up with a 13th out of 18 riders this time around, so no trophy this time, but I still had a great time. The track was pretty tough, and some sections were downright brutal. It was wet and slippery in some places, some had both the front and rear slipping at the same time - like ice, with a few of the tougher uphill sections that had riders struggling on every lap as I came through. There were not as many DNFs as I expected, though, so most of the folks were dealing the conditions pretty well. Only 1 DNF in my class, and only 5 DNFs total for the afternoon race. Contrast to the last race at Brushy Mountain where there were 3 DNFs in my class and 22 DNFs for the afternoon overall. Personally, while the laps were shorter, I thought the conditions were tougher than Brushy, yet the attrition rate was lower. Go figure. There seemed to be about 30 fewer riders in the afternoon race this time around, so maybe the DNF'ers just didn't show up this time around. :lol3

    My buddy Tarheel Wheeler joined me this time around so we rode up together. TW had a great race - came in 4th in his class out of 12, SEN C 45+ - way to go TW! 4th in class the first time out - that's awesome! :clap

    I think our results for the overall out of 150 riders were 114th for me and 87th for TW. But this was only TW's first hare scramble, so I'm sure he'll be moving up in the order as he gets a few under his belt and gets it all figured out. He's a very experienced rider and a quick learner and is experienced at other forms of racing, so I figure he'll be running closer up front soon.

    TW being there did serve somewhat of a gage for the level of racing in the NCHSA, though. I'm not sure how the series stacks up to others in the region like Mideast and SETRA, but TW is a great rider and leaves me in the dust at will every time we ride, so I had little doubt he would do well. When we all go riding together, he's generally the fastest of the group, unless BC61 shows up. :lol3 But for comparison, TW finished 2nd in class at last year's SandBlast Rally with an 8th overall in that event, with some pretty darn fast riders from all over the east, even Canada I think. Comparing our times in this hare scramble, I was averaging 12.1 MPH for my 114th out of 150 (not great), TW was averaging 14.3 MPH for his 87th (good), the leaders in my class SEN C 40+ were averaging 16.8 for 24th overall (very good), and the top 10 of the overall afternoon race which is aging "B" riders + "C" class, were averaging 18+ MPH with the overall winner at just under 20 MPH at 19.36 (excellent!). But this was only TW's first hare scramble, so would expect him to improve on that, but even so, the top guys in each of the classes are finishing probably in the top 20 to 30 of the overall, those guys are really hauling the mail! So given what a great rider I know TW to be, that just puts things into perspective a little bit for me, all things considered. I know I'd have to really step it up and improve what seems like an order of magnitude to keep up with TW in the woods. And then that he would have to do that to run with the front runners. So ... dang, I'm just not sure I could ever get to that level, that would take some serious time and dedication. I'd love to get there, though.

    But then consider the national level of competition, for example, in the GNCC's, and you're probably talking yet again another whole order of magnitude. The level of riding that those guys do begins to boggle my mind.

    At any rate, I felt like I rode OK considering the conditions. There were a few of the greasy slick clay sections where I felt downright sketchy and I basically just nursed it through those. And I did get held up for several minutes on the next to the last lap. Someone got hurt and they held up about 8 of us while the emergency workers got the injured rider out. I'm not sure if it affected my results, but if it did, it would have only been a position or two, which likely would not have changed whether I took home a trophy anyway. Regardless, I'm not at all bothered by having to wait, I hope the injured rider is OK and the emergency crew were able to get him out faster and more safely without having to worry about other riders coming up the trail in the opposite direction.

    I used a new helmet cam this time around, and the video quality is markedly improved, but it is taking forever for my computer to convert the format to something that FCE can use. I hope to get that posted soon, I may just post the whole first lap like I did with Brushy Mtn Part I which will save editing time.

    All in all, it was a great day, tough course, my arms feel like I did 500 push ups yesterday. It was great carpooling up and pitting with TW - he's a helluva rider and all-round good guy. Hope we can do more of these together, maybe he can teach me his secrets. :lol3
    #87
  8. IT 400

    IT 400 Junk Collector

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    Are we having fun yet??? YOU BETCHA' WE ARE!!! great report, looking forward to the video...+1 on TeeDub always a treat, ridin', racin' or just chillin' and eatin'...
    #88
  9. hobie1dog

    hobie1dog Not a Sheeple

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    , my goggles were fogging badly in similar conditions and I even stopped for a few minutes while trying to pull the nose guard off them because it was hindering my breathing and catching on my helmet. I couldn't see shite. About that time I was wondering if I could install a tiny little fan on my goggles for some forced air circulation - it was like a sauna back in those woods. The low humidity of the desert would have been welcome. :lol3[/quote]

    You need a Haber Eliminator fan, made just for that purpose, comes on when needed.
    http://www.habervision.com/product/12013.aspx
    #89
  10. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    Oh YEAH! That's exactly what I needed. Come to think of it, this same race but last year, the same thing happened. It was hotter and wetter last year, but the humidity in those woods is something fierce especially after the rains in the days prior. This year, my goggles started fogging sitting at the bottom of a bottleneck while not moving for a few minutes, and they never recovered after that, even after several attempts to clear them. I ended up just pulling them down and going without them for the 3 and a half laps remaining, being extra careful to duck my head if anyone was throwing roost. No race is worth losing an eye.

    But that Habervision fan is really cool, I'm going to look into that. Price doesn't seem terribly outrageous. Hmmm....
    #90
  11. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    Thanks IT! TW may be new to hare scrambles, but he's not new to racing and this was not his first rodeo. He was as cool as a cucumber in the pit. The rest of us were getting nervous twitches and chattering nonsense, meanwhile TW's lounging back on the camp chair, feet up, hat pulled down over his eyes taking a nap. :lol3

    Video should be up an an hour or two, it's uploading now.
    #91
  12. Tarheel Wheeler

    Tarheel Wheeler Around

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    NB, Thanks for the compliments, but I think you're strechin the truth ref my ridin abilities. None the less, I had a great time hangin and ridin with you and the guys at whatever rock place that was! :D

    Separated shoulder and banged up knee put me in preserve mode after the second lap. Way to much risk in my book to go fast on that track and try and make it to work today. Been livin on Motrin since I got back to the house last night. :lol3

    Took 1.5 hours to clean the bike and gear up tonight. Can't wait to see the video. :wink:

    Thanks again for the hospitality and adventure.

    Been thinkin...fast afternoon guys start at the front and don't have to deal with the bottlenecks that us scrubs in the back do, so you can't really compare times on an open track like they have to the times resulting from parking lot situations like we deal with at the back. Guess I'll just have to have a birthday and move up to 50+.
    #92
  13. ncTRAILBOSS

    ncTRAILBOSS A52 TOUR GUIDE

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    :clap I'm proud to say that I ride with NB and TEEDUB!!
    #93
  14. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    Mandatory pics to prove it happened.

    The Pirelli guys are always there, and they stay busy. I think they only charge $10 to swap a tire - man, you can't beat that. I wonder if they will do one with TireBalls? :deal :lol3 Totally worth it!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The view of the start area from behind, coming from the pit area. The rows will launch toward the woods in front, make a sharp 180, and head back in the other direction. This is the morning race lining up, Pro, AA, A, and fast B's:

    [​IMG]


    From the front:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Big panoramic from the front, looking backwards down the start, the riders will be coming directly toward me in this shot, making a 180 left hand turn and shooting down a progressively narrowing path before entering the trees:

    [​IMG]


    Some of the Pro/AA rows starting:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Just before entering the woods, there was nice little kicker. I don't know why any of the real photographers didn't set up here, if someone would get some shots of me doing this, I'd be on them like white on rice. A shot like that is better than a trophy, as far as I'm concerned: :deal

    [​IMG]


    Post race, bike is nice and dirty, but not too bad. Not "Devil's Ridge" dirty. :lol3 The trials tire did really well, I was impressed. Even in the place I was most concerned, the greasy thick wet clay with hard clay underneath, the kind of surface you need crampons on to actually walk without slipping and sliding all over the place, it didn't exactly "hook up," but what it never did was leave me with no traction. It wasn't stellar in that, but it always found *some* traction no matter what, and as long as I was easy on the gas, it made its way up all of the gnarliest hills, albeit a little more slowly than I would have liked, but it made it. And everywhere else, it was pretty amazing - better than any other tire I've ever used, it did best in the rocks and roots, wet or dry, and didn't suffer anywhere else. Great tire.

    [​IMG]


    Loaded up for the trip back home:

    [​IMG]


    But not before we stop by the scoring shack, and pick up TW's hardware. Nice trophy, dude! Well done.

    [​IMG]
    #94
  15. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    I don't know, man. Guys starting on Row 9, my row, and only one row in front of yours, finishing 24th overall. Those guys are the real deal! :deal

    Either way, though, like you said, the bottlenecks are no fun at all, and they guys starting in the back get the worst of it for sure. It definitely would be easier not to have to deal with all that. :eek1
    #95
  16. Tarheel Wheeler

    Tarheel Wheeler Around

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    Sounds to me like you got some serious sand baggers in your class if that's the case. :lol3

    None of the bottlenecks were really hard...just no way around em when they all clogged up with guys trying to start their bikes in the middle of the trail after stalling em. Amazing how many people forget how to feather a clutch...it's a lost art I tell ya.
    #96
  17. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    I compared the times of the front runners in my class to those of SEN B which would be the next class progression, and the fastest in my class would have finished 8th in SEN B, or just slightly in the back half. So ... I wouldn't necessarily call that sandbagging. It's all relative, though.

    Regardless, my point was that the skill levels are pretty high up front. Although, the whole spectrum is well represented. :lol3

    Would be great to have some options for alternate lines in the bottleneck areas, though. But I guess that's why they become bottlenecks in the first place. Starting in the first few rows would miss most of them. The only way for me to do that, is to improve enough to move up to SEN B. I've got a lot of work to do before I can do that.
    #97
  18. IT 400

    IT 400 Junk Collector

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    Just before entering the woods, there was nice little kicker. I don't know why any of the real photographers didn't set up here, if someone would get some shots of me doing this, I'd be on them like white on rice. A shot like that is better than a trophy, as far as I'm concerned: :deal

    [​IMG]

    I've said it before, that's the difference between a RACER with a camera and someone with a camera at the races...There is a neat interview with Dan Mahoney(sp), he talks about his race experience and his relationship with riders that put him in the right spots to anticipate and catch "THE SHOT"...
    #98
  19. Tarheel Wheeler

    Tarheel Wheeler Around

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    Moving up to the next class will be tough for sure. I've got a long way to go as well if I want to move up. Thinkin about it, I kind of like the view from the back...except for the two smoke exhaust. Man was it thick in the woods...almost got sick breathing that stuff. :puke1

    I'm just jokin about the baggers...Lot's of really good riders in all classes. :evil
    #99
  20. nobrakes

    nobrakes Long timer

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    Here's my whole first lap from Flat Rock - again, uncut, raw, unaltered, all my goof-ups. I thought it was a pretty tough course, very slick in places. As I mentioned, my goggles fogged badly at that bottleneck and I was never able to get them to clear and couldn't see anything, so after I cleared the bottleneck, I pulled them down and rode the rest of the race after that without goggles. If you watch closely, you can see TW slip by me as I was stopped and messing with my goggles just after the bottleneck. I think three bikes went buy, he's on the KTM, the 2nd one I think. :deal

    Again, this was my first go at using a trials tire. I was a bit worried about running a trials tire in the mud, but I must admit that it never left me without traction. It was a little slower getting up some of the greasy slick hills than I think a knobby would have been, but it always found traction, and I just had to go easy does it on those slick muddy areas. Giving it more gas wasn't netting any more traction or resulting in getting up those slick hills any faster. But if I was easy on the gas, it always grabbed something to kept going. But it really excelled and was superior to a knobby in some other areas. That's my opinion, from the back half of C class, which is probably not worth a lot. :-)

    You'll note that I spent the first half of the first lap trying to get around a slightly slower guy in front of me, who was also in my class. Unfortunately, I was not quite fast or skilled enough to pass quickly or cleanly, and I think we were holding up a few faster guys behind us. All the while, I kept thinking I was going to get him "any second now," but unfortunately it took a little longer than I had anticipated.

    Link to the video if the embedded code doesn't work: http://www.vimeo.com/11824577

    <object width="800" height="530"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><param name="movie" value="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11824577&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=0&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF&amp;fullscreen=1" /><embed src="http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=11824577&amp;server=vimeo.com&amp;show_title=0&amp;show_byline=0&amp;show_portrait=1&amp;color=00ADEF&amp;fullscreen=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" width="800" height="530"></embed></object><p><a href="http://vimeo.com/11824577">2010 NCHSA Rd 4 - Flat Rock Hare Scramble</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user555192">bsd512</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p><p>This is the start and the first lap of the 2010 NCHSA Round 4 Hare Scramble - Flat Rock. It was pretty wet, the course was slick, rocky, lots of roots, and pretty tough. It was a lot of fun, though, I had a great time.</p>