Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Making The Best of It - A Nice Sunday Stroll with a Bike on Her Shoulder

Cyclocross racing is only for those who are tough. It is a sport that demands a lot out of you and often you have to do that when it is bitterly cold, not to mention early in the morning. Sunday was one such day. We were up and on the road before 6:30 a.m. while the rest of the house snoozed on. I am pretty sure that both of us were tempted to turn off the alarm and roll over. However, once we got going, it was nice.
I always enjoy the sunrise and Sunday put on a blue, pink, purple spectacular show. My photo does not even begin to give you an accurate feel for the beauty of it. The moon, not to be outdone, was in its full moon glory. The roads are quiet at that time of the day. The race was in Lyons, which meant we had a little over an hours to get there. Ellie ate her breakfast and then settled in for a snooze until we arrived.

It was colder than it looked, so the kids stayed bundled until the last moment. Ellie got a front row spot from the call-ups and had a good start. The course was a long one. On the farthest corner out she crashed and broke her derailer hanger (thank goodness for those - better to break that, a $25 item, than the derailer a $$$ item.)
Now, she could have simply opted to cut a diagonal pathway through the course and settle with a DNF (Did Not Finish), but she opted instead to walk the course, most of it with her bike propped on her shoulder. I am proud of her for making that choice. She was the only one in her category in this race, so she still came in first place and earned a few more points towards the Boulder Racing series overall standings and the Colorado Cross Cup. I think she actually did it because it was the right thing for her to do. Kathy, her mountain bike coach, and I stood there waiting and wondering where she was. Once we knew she'd was okay, Kathy retreived her own bike so that Ellie could get it out of the pit and continue with the race. I was thankful for that gesture and for the fact that Tim, the head official, let Ellie call it a finish.

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