You piss away about 3-4 minutes before you can even start, there is that many people. You ride on the road for like 3 miles, super sketchy! Then you enter a grass farm field that is very tough. Then you start hitting some XC ski trail. It only has one line so you are mostly riding in grass still. You switch off between ski trail, gravel roads and two track for the rest of the race. There is no real singletrack although there are a couple places of double track that roll like singletrack (not technical but you can’t pass.)
It gets progressively harder. Fire tower is steep and very hard. Last year it was in perfect shape and almost everyone was walking because there are too many people. I was able to take a line up the middle and swerve around people and gain about 100-150 spots. When you hit gravel roads, find a pack and sit in. You will ride in a different pack each time, it spreads out on the not gravel roads and comes back together when it does get back to the gravel.
The last 10 miles will test you physically as if you aren’t hydrating well you will cramp. I even started to get the twitch and I hardly ever cramp. [ed. note: I cramp just thinking about cramping] Finally you decend into a ski bowl with lots of people cheering and ride up to the finish. All this with 1800 of your closest friends. It’s physically as hard as you want to push it, it’s easy if you don’t care about time but if you push yourself it will hurt bad. Last year I saw some of my WORS rivals so I really pushed it, but I beat all of them. Technical skills aren’t needed just make sure to have your weight back when you ride down grass hills as there are lots of random ruts. And pray it is dry out there.
Your 2X8 won’t be great on the climb for it as you need to have a high cadence so you can slow the cadence down when people are walking in front of you. The 2X8 will be perfect the rest of the way! The last 10 is up and down easy, hard, easy, hard. It’s tough!
Are you nervous for me?
We're leaving for Chequawhatever this afternoon to celebrate my birthday with a 40-mile mountain bike race tomorrow. Here's what Burrito Eater, a grizzled veteran of the 2005 race, has to say about the course: