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Friday, June 10, 2016

Motherlode race info

The Motherlode version of the Gold Rush Gravel Grinder is 210 miles. The race starts at 5 am on Saturday morning and the cutoff for finishers is 2 am Sunday morning. (Note: SD is on Mountain Standard Time.) The Saturday forecast for Spearfish, where we'll start, is a high of 98, low of 60, and windy. 

The course is basically two loops joined by an out-and-back section, and we'll have four checkpoints where we can meet our crew. 

Leg 1: 69.3 miles. Cutoff: 12:30 pm
Cue sheets 1-5. This leg is basically one sustained climb. And we ride into Wyoming. 

Leg 2: 53.7 mi. Cutoff: 6 pm. Cue sheets 5-7. This segment looks more like a sawtooth. We enter the Black Hills National Forest at mile 92.7. 

Leg 3: 29 miles. Cutoff: 9 pm.  Cue sheets 7-8. Mostly a downhill trend before beginning another sustained climb. We ride on part of the Mickelson Trail. Bridges!! Tunnels!!

Leg 4: 20 miles. Cutoff: 11 pm. Cue sheets 8-9. Sustained climb. 

Leg 5: 37 miles. Cutoff: 2 am. Cue sheet 9. Downhill trend. We'll ride through beautiful Spearfish Canyon. At least the pictures look beautiful. It'll most definitely be dark when I get there. 

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't concerned about the heat and wind. My hottest race last year was a 17-hour race in 97 degrees, and it was rough for a few hours there. We'll definitely have to take care of ourselves. 

I quit Dirty Kanza three years ago in challenging conditions and still regret it. This race is getting my best effort. As long as I can keep pedaling, that's what I'm going to do. If I miss a cutoff I'm going to miss it riding, not quitting. I've never been more prepared for a race. I'm so excited to ride in South Dakota and looking forward to incredible views, good company, and riding across the finish line! 

1 comment:

  1. Good luck and take care of yourself. Remember that you need to actually survive the race, a good DNF is a good blog post. You are braver than you think.