Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Haleakala 2nd Try

Last week out of the blue Robyn asked me some very random questions about stuff I may say or fill out on bike race entries. I thought they were weird and random, but never thought about it much. Then I got an email saying I was registered for a race... then I got an email with flight information! I was super stoked!!! Robyn had gone and sent me on a sweet race trip! Robyn, you are the best... The best.. and these lyrics are for you. You should know where they are from... :)

Try to be best ‘Cause you’re only a man
And a man’s gotta learn to take it
Try to believe Though the going gets rough
That you gotta hang tough to make it
History repeats itself
Try and you’ll succeed
Never doubt that you’re the one
And you can have your dreams!
You’re the best!
Nothing’s gonna ever keep you down
You’re the Best!
Nothing’s gonna ever keep you down
You’re the Best!
Nothing’s gonna ever keep you dow-ow-ow-ow-own
Fight ‘til the end Cause your life will depend
On the strength that you have inside you
Ah you gotta be proud
starin’ out in the cloud
When the odds in the game defy you
Try your best to win them all
and one day time will tell
when you’re the one that’s standing there
you’ll reach the final bell!
Fight ‘til you drop never stop
can’t give up Til you reach the top

you’re the best in town

Listen to that sound
A little bit of all you got
Can never bring you down
You’re the best!
Nothing’s gonna ever keep you down
You’re the Best! Around!

I went over to Maui this last weekend and raced in the annual "Cycle to the Sun" road race. It starts at sea level and goes up the mountain for 36 miles while climbing 10,036'. Here are the details as best as I can remember...
Left saturday noon from honolulu, and upon arrival, went to the car rental place and rental a Dodge Charger for 20 dollars... My buddy Jimmy was there too and paid for half. We drove to the hotel that some team mates were staying at and after driving past the camping beach and seeing all the people there, and after feeling the 90+degree heat we decided to split a room at the dumpy hotel... I mean the Maui seaside hotel... It was A/C'd and had two beds... figured we would race better with a semi-good sleep. After assembling the bike I went for ride up the north coast just west of Kahului. I had never ridden, or even seen that part of Maui... after 20 minutes came to a hill with a nice little 10 minute climb. Passion fruit everywhere... tons of glass too.
Ate Italian for dinner, talked to Robyn on the phone and then passed out in the stale smoke room. at 5:15 woke up, drank muscle milk and drove to start line. Exited car, slipped clothes on, rushed to start line and as I budged my way to the start line at the front the gun went off and we were on our way.

1000' felt good, still riding a good pace my team controlling front end. Carl, Rick, Joe, and myself.

2000' felt good, few attacks, still at the front, Tony Lang from Oahu breaks away, Colavita sutter leading group, with Ray Brust...Old japanese man straggling behind us

3000' first steep section at Makawao, bit of an attack, and only ten of us left together, I am still in front
4000' Carl decides he cant keep the pace and falls off the back, I slow down to help him back to group, but he soon quits race due to illness.

4500' I drop out of lead pack and start to tire out bad, then Carl drives by with cold beverage, and fakes me out by pretending to try and pull me a little from the car.

5000' I get passed by 4 and try to ride with last of them, Jason from Oahu... cant remember his last name but I remember that he rode with me for most of the way to the top to Mauna Kea three weeks ago.

6500' Ride through the Ranger station, still with Jason, now I bonk... Hit the wall... DIE!!! at this point I realize that my Gel pack of sugar I eat every 30 minutes is not enough, and I eat a powerbar, 4 gels, and a salt tab. I also drink 34oz water, and within 10 minutes feel good again and pick up the pace

7000' want to quit, nobody in sight ahead, or behind, lots of switch backs, grass, feel like on mont ventoux, wish I was skinny, wish robyn was next to me, Want burrito, drugs, water, bed etc... lots of emotions here... beautiful sky...
I cant breat well, my legs are burning and I am not getting enough oxygen...

8000' first female in race is a few minutes back and I see her below, Ive been pulling jason along since about 5000' feet... He tells me that I am strong and he cannot keep up any more. I tell him to shut up and ride and stop thinking and talking about quitting. Cant breath, elevation is getting to me.

8500' Woman aproaches from behind with her two pace rabbits, and Jason decides he isnt going to let her beat him, so he attacks me and I am all alone, then passed by the three.

9000' I feel no wind, hear no noise, rocks, no grass, remember last time when I almost fell over at 9000 and sat on side of road for 20 minutes. Keep going on keeping my pace and my legs moving.

9600' pass the lower parking lot and finally get some cheers from the fans waiting for their family members to ride up. Feel good, but realize its not over!
I ride through the narrow gate up the lookout access road and shift into my easiest gear... This is when i really felt terrible. I barely moved up that last really steep section. It was about 12-14% grade, and sparsely lined with spectators. 25 minutes earlier Ray won the race by out climbing the old Japanese guy here... I stood on my pedals and danced for the last 30 feet. The only dancing I did!

10,032' I finish with a time of 3:26 in 22 place overall, and 4th in my age division... after overalls were awarded I was 2nd! The first time I did this mountain my time was 4:30, with multiple breaks along the way to catch my breath and eat etc etc. Felt great
The rest of the weekend was a blur, but thanks to Robyn I was able to ride in an epic, difficult, crazy race I will never forget. Haleakala is translated to mean "house of the sun".

I love you Robyn!


Jeni said...

Sounds like a crazy race!! miss you guys.

Jeni said...

how do you remember all those crazy details?? Sounds like an amazing adventure!!
Love, Mom