“Don’t stop pedaling. Don’t stop. Don’t…”
What a day.
The 2012 Crusher had it all: rain, slop, washboards, and the Col d’ Crush.
Another stellar race. I only wish I could have been faster. But I always feel that way. Nevertheless, I had fun. A lot of fun. And I can’t explain why that is. What fun is 70 miles of sticky dirt, rain, brain-rattling washboards, and 10,600 feet of climbing? Everything. Of course, it hurt. It hurt like nothing I’ve done before. Even last year’s race didn’t hurt like 2012 did. And in my case, more hurt did not equal more speed. I was 12 minutes slower.
But I don’t care. Not right now. I will care, eventually. I’ll try to be faster next year. And faster the year after that. The chase is, after all, circular. Eternal. But right now, I’m just happy that the Crusher is behind me. I’m still reliving the different moments of the day. The fragrant forest, the wet roads, and the swirling clouds painted a beautiful picture for us to pedal through. The Tushar mountains are breathtaking (literally!), even more so during a summer rain storm.
“…stop pedaling. Don’t.”
I turned the pedals another time. And then once more.
And then I did. I stopped. And walked.
Above me I could see the final switchback of the Col d’ Crush. It was right there, and yet, so far away. I kept walking. After a few minutes I was back on the bike. My pride and pomp were gone. And so were my ambitions. I wasn’t pedaling. I was churning. Barely moving. Far below, the valley I had crossed was shrouded in misty rain. It had only been an hour ago that I was there, but it seemed a lifetime had come and gone while ascending the Col d’ Crush. I’m still not sure a lifetime hadn’t come and gone.
And then it was over. The Col d’ Crush, the race, the pain and hurt, all gone. Finished.
Today I am a mix of tired optimism. The 2013 Crusher is only a year away. Is that enough time to prepare? It had better be, because I’ll be there again, ready to crush. And ready to be crushed.