Back to SoNoMas!
Our 2015 experience at Lake Sonoma wasn't great. I had problems at the beginning and started the race from the back while Casandra rode the long course (only Pro Women ride the long distance) and was out for 6 hours!
This year we knew what to expect, although the weather changed things a little bid, slippery mud sections, river and creek crossings and probably a dozen of fallen trees on the track. Our teammates Mark and Jessica pre-rode the course a couple weeks ahead and came back pretty scared from that adventure!
I felt great, paced myself well over the whole race and was still feeling good for the last gnarly steep climbs - I was on control of things, only the dis- and remounting gave me trouble. I cramped a couple times as trees were laying over the trail and showed up unexpected. My new shoes didn't work well in the mud and are only great as long as you stay on the bike. Getting back in the pedals didn't work great either.
That said, this issues and weakness cost me the podium today. 7th place, only 1:47min behind 5th after 4 hours of racing. If I compare times to last year, I was probably around 14min faster and my new Bianchi Methanol was the perfect bike for this race. I also have to mention that I rode the whole time with my friend Steve - we didn't really plan on that, it just happened that we were both same speed and it was fun riding more or less together!
Casandra didn't get lost this time, so she shaved off about 1h45min from last year's time and finished also in 7th.