Last Sunday was my final race of the season ... The Wildcat Mountain hill climb. I had thought about racing this last year, but my schedule didn't work out, so I skipped it last year. I had talked to a couple teammates/friends about the climb and most said it had some steep parts, but also had some good mild climb parts, some downhill and basically a little bit of everything.
Well ... it was harder than expected!
The first climb was much longer than anticipated and averaged what appears to be in the 8% - 9% range over 1 - 1.5 miles. From there it flattened out, then had some downhill sections that were pretty tight and twisty. The rest of the race had a combination of steep climbs, descents and a few tight turns.
Normally this would have been a pretty fast and straightforward course ... however, it started to rain a few minutes after I started, getting heavier as the race went along. By the time I made it to the downhill sections they were soaked and slick, so I backed "WAY" off down the hills not wanting to risk crashing during the last race of the season ... I've already been down three times this season.
Overall ... it was a good race, but with better conditions and knowing I needed points for the TT cup I'm pretty sure I could have taken a minute or so off my time which was 44:09 over 11.5 miles and 2200+ feet of climbing.
I ended up taking 2nd place on the day and had the 8th fastest time on the day ... pretty much where I expected I would finish based on those that had registered for the race and times of people I know that raced it last season.
It's a great race and I'm looking forward to racing it again next season.
With all that said ... I'm glad the season is over. I'm tired, feel a bit out of shape considering I've done one long ride (4+ hours) in the past two months. Most of my training has been commuting to work and racing on the weekends (but the races didn't last longer than an hour for the most part).
I'm looking forward to taking it easy for a while, getting in some good commuting miles and long rides on the weekend.