2007/07/28 – Texas State Championship Sprint Adventure Race Series: Muleshoe

2007.07.28 — Texas State Championship Sprint Adventure Race Series: Muleshoe

Location

Muleshoe Bend Recreation Area

What Is It?

2 Person Teams Coed, Male, Coed Masters and Female Divisions (Both Coed Masters team members must be 40+ years old by 12/31/07)

    Events:

  • Trail Running
  • Swim
  • Trail Running
  • Bike (single track)
  • Paddle
  • Bike (single track)
  • Trail Run

Team Name: OUCH (Obviously Unprepared, Confused & Hurting)

Team Mates

  • Steve Mertz
  • Kelley Steffen

Category

  • 2 Person Coed

Placing

  • 19th out of 41 at a time of: 1:53:02

Copied Results

Experience

Huge thanks to Kelley for racing with me! This race was a lot of fun! And as people who know me, know, I usually start having the most fun when I get hurt and this was true again this race…

It is an interesting format this year at Muleshoe. Simply because there is so much water in Lake Travis, that we couldn’t have TA where it normally is down beside the lake… because there was no beside the lake, it was all lake. Lake Travis is up about 20-30 feet currently from what I usually see of it. So we had to have TA up at the top of the road at the entrance to the park. And I should mention that this is TA #1. As we TA setup down by the lake for the paddle section. So my first race with two TAs in it. Definitely different. At this second TA we put our Sevy seats and extra water that we might want for the paddle leg.

So we start off with the run. There are over a hundred teams out here so I want to change up the plan a little bit and start mid/front instead of towards the back. And so we do, and off we go! It’s a down hill run to the lake, and as soon as things settle down a bit, I get Kelley attached to the tow rope so I can tow her to go faster. Apparently we (me?) was really hauling it, after the race the comment was that Kelley looked like a dog whose leash was attached to a car and the car took off. Sorry Kelley! I didn’t mean to go that fast on you!

We get to the lake to find out that we have to go into the lake and a round a couple buoys. That were suppose to be only chest deep for most people, but by the time we were out there, we were swimming it. And unfortunately, there were a couple of people that kept pushing down on me so I was seriously struggling to stay afloat and swim. But manage to get through it eventually as we lost quite a bit of places due to that. Kelley managed to avoid most of the chaos (how did you do that?!) and made it out first and safely. That took a bunch of out of me as I started sucking wind pretty bad.

After a bit I finally manage to catch my breath enough to be able to reattach the tow system and I can tow her some more… But that didn’t last long as we hit TA pretty quickly there after. We run in, and change into our biking gear and head on out.

The pain that would make this a good race (don’t ask, I have no idea why it works like that) was about 100m into the bike leg a wasp bit me on my ankle bone. SONOFA! That Hurts!

The trails are not the easiest trails in the world to ride, they do get a bit technical, but also nothing really gnarly. And Kelley did an awesome job out there. We managed to pass a few teams on the first bike leg. And it was fun single track, we did have some wait times due to the mass amounts of people that were in front of us, that couldn’t ride the trails so we had to wait a bit for that to clear out.

We get into TA #2, and ditch our helmets, grab our seats and run to the boats. Finally! A decent length paddle! Kelley and I get in the Sevy and start paddling. We find a good rhythm and pass a couple teams on the first part of the paddle. We get to the point where one of us has to get out of the boat and run up and get a poker chip, so Kelley does that while I get things a bit better situated. When we first hopped into the boat, my seat was off and I wasn’t sitting very straight.

Kelley gets back in and we head back off to TA#2 and we pass a couple more teams on the paddle. It was a very good paddle for us. Was glad to finally have a longer paddle in one of these races as well! We get back to TA#2 and hop back on the bikes and race off on bike leg #2!

We get past by a couple of teams to start off with, which is fine. There is still a bit of biking left and quite a bit of it is uphill (although I didn’t tell Kelley that at the time) And then we get in to the single track again and we go zipping through. Again Kelley impresses me with keeping up fairly well and we start passing teams again. We come across a couple of teams that are running their bikes due to mechanicals. Things like flats and broken derailleurs. I think to myself, “boy that sucks…” We continue to pass a couple more teams. And I have a sinking feeling about my rear tire getting a little squishy.

I look down and it doesn’t seem to be deflating. We continue on a bit, and about a mile later my rear tire slides a bit and *PSHHHH* FLAT! I try to ride it out flat, knowing we were not very far from the end of the trail, but it was just too much effort. I also think about running it, but the bike shoes I have are no good for running a couple of miles in. So I’m stuck changing the tire. It takes a bit longer than I would have liked, I had problems getting the tire beaded back on after swapping out the tube. Then I fill it with one CO2 cartridge and decide that should be good enough for the rest of the race. I hop on and we take off. About 100m down the trail I realize that I have to get another CO2 into the tire because it’s not ridable at all. So I hop off yell to tell Kelley I have to add more, and take too long to get the CO2 cartridge swapped out.

I start to get a bit frustrated at this point. But then realize there isn’t much more I can do and relax and get back on the bike and we go! We make it through the last couple of miles and find out we have one last run. so we quickly drop our bikes, I swap out shoes, while Chad G helps me with my helmet and we run off! With me not tying my left shoe lace. We start off and I realize my shoe is untied and I’m sliding around pretty bad. So my stability trail shoes aren’t very stable and I’m very aware of the twisting and turning my ankle is doing, hoping it doesn’t get too bad. Thankfully the run was short and we make it in quickly and finish the race!

Multimedia

I had my camera… But I forgot to take it out of the truck again! There were lots of people taking pictures out there… so I will be borrowing them soon!

Maps

No maps for this race.

Final Thoughts

It was a very fun race. I love the venue of Muleshoe, and the fact it was completely different this time around up there was great. As always Kelley brought her amazing attitude with her! Just a blast to be around!

We had a good race and probably would have done really well if I didn’t get that flat tire. Need to investigate in ways of fixing that issue. Either tubeless or bigger CO2 or both.

Other than there was not much else we could have done. Kelley really impressed me out there with how well she did, especially on the biking. And for the last run she really dug deep and brought is up to the finish line strong! It was great to see!

A Couple Days Later… (2007/07/30)

Still think it was a great race. The only issues I have with it was the flat tire I got, and the towing of Kelley incident.

For the towing part, I need to be a bit more aware of how fast I’m going and to check back to make sure things are okay, rather than just bolting and not thinking twice. It could be really disastrous, thankfully it wasn’t this time.

For the tire part. I need to find a new CO2 pump that takes larger canisters so I don’t have to worry about changing out the canisters twice for a tire change. I could also probably stand a bit more practice on getting the tire on and off, the back. I seemed to have struggled a bit on it. But that could have just been me rushing.

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