This past weekend was the second stop on the MBAA circuit with the White Tanks Whirlwind. When the Matters picked me up in Tucson it was raining hard and the wind was certainly whirling! Not knowing what we’d find in Phoenix we set off north to find some perfect race conditions. It was windy out, but also really nice to be racing with temps in the mid 50’s.
We set off for four laps and I went for it from the gun. With a little gap 30 seconds into the race, I went for it – uphill and into the headwind. The course starts with a climb, then has some technical, but fast sections in the middle and the last third of the course is slightly downhill and fast all the way back to the start finish. I hadn’t raced there since 2009 so that first lap was a quick refresher as I established a lead. Laps two, three, and four all went off well too and I steadily built upon the gap and worked on riding various sections of the course smoother and faster. The third and fourth laps were really dialed in and I was having fun ripping around the trails on the Sworks Epic. Scoring another win was great, but knowing that I’m making a little progress with the early season training was the bigger victory.
Andrea pulled off second place in her race so Brian was successful with his water duties! Maybe next time he’ll also have a number plate on… Also a big thanks to Marty from AZ Devo and Bruce from ProGold who were there to help keep things running smoothly pre and post-race with their expo setup.
Arizona riding and racing is relatively “nice” on drivetrains, but it’s important to take good care of everything so that it’ll return the favor. Dust is often our worst enemy and large amounts of it can wreak havoc on shifting performance and turn a smooth running drivetrain into a dried out metal on metal mess. I’ve been training and racing with the ProGold Extreme lube which holds up really well in such conditions. After 27.5 miles of ripping around the desert this is what things looked like after the fact, having done nothing to clean things up. There’s just a little dust that was picked up, but the chain was certainly running smoothly and shifting performance was fantastic. Not more than five minutes of work will be required to clean things up and prep it for the Old Pueblo 24 hour race this weekend.
Keep tuned for more details from that weekend. Thanks for checking in. -TJ