Bobby J. Fanook, Fanuke, Fanuck, Whatever...
Today was the First Annual Bobby Fanook 5 Hours of Seven Springs.
OK, OK, to be complete honest there is no Bobby Fanook. And there is of course NO Annual 5 hour race in his honor held at Seven Springs. What there IS, is me riding 5 hours at Seven Springs, doing 3 laps and about 35ish miles of rooty, rocky, mountain goodness, in a hair under 5 hours (including some pits for new bottles and a saddle adjustment).
During this 5 hours of sweet riding I found myself saying the name Bobby Fanook out loud as I rode. I know NO ONE named Bobby Fanook. In fact the only time I've ever heard the name/phrase/word "fanook" was on the Sopranos. Where I believe it's an Italian derogatory slang word for a gay man.
In any event, I felt the need to dub my 5 hour pre ride of the Seven Springs race course in Bobby's honor, since muttering his name out loud and giggling got me through 5 hours of riding. The course was in EXCELLENT condition today and the new section of single track that I was told about last week was clearly marked and in sweet shape. It really helps bypass some of the double track that is littered with mud puddles.
I can't say enough about how good this course is. It is hands down my fave 12 or 24 hour course I've ever done. It has EVERYTHING a mountain bike race course should have! Rocks, roots, down hills, steep ups, rock gardens, long climbs, and more. It rocks! The ONLY part of the course that I truly dread is traversing the ski slopes to get to the steep service road up hill at about 7 or 8. The rest of the course in my opinion is a TRUE mountain bike course. If you don't like this course, there's something f*cking wrong with you. Really, I'm not kidding. Get help. The only thing I see wrong with it is that it can be a good 1:20 to 1:40 to complete a lap. This is cool during the day, but folks at night with older light systems might find themselves running out of juice. I won't have to worry about that too much since my Princeton Tec SB3 is soooo titz and will run 6+ hours on high.
I felt good over the five hours. The Dos Niner was great, my belly was good, nutrition was good, hydration was good and I had NO cramps at all. I did have a sore low back. The stem adjustments really didn't do anything. I guess I'm just getting old! And/or ready to go back to a full suspension!
Funny thing about riding a course like this in prepping for a Solo race. There are parts of the course where many team racers or XC types will put the hammer down and really get the speed up. As a sub par Solo type guy, I look at those places as parts of the course where I can ease up, take in food, hydrate and stretch out. I also find myself using my granny gear on climbs that I can/have powered up in the middle ring in the past. I personally feel that the seconds wasted spinning up a climb will pay off in the long run with fresher legs over the long haul. OR maybe I'm just lazy, who know?
I wanted to do a 4th lap, but I also wanted to be fresh enough to go out with Wifey tonight and to maybe ride on the road tomorrow. So after 3 laps, I called it. Stopped at the Six Pack Shop down by Rt. 31 to pick up some refreshments for tonight and to get the BEST freaking homemade pepperoni roll EVER!!! My God was it good. Stuffed with pepperoni, cheese, and hot banana peppers. If you go up to the Springs to ride, you MUST stop there for one.
This week sucked the life out of me mentally, but today made up for it. Multiple hours of mountain single track, crime fighting, good beer, and a meal at Mad Mex. ONCE in while, and I stress ONCE, it ain't so bad being me. I kinda dig it. :)