Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Race Report & Pics: La Rooota #7

Eric G here for a quick race report from this weekend's La Rooota event at Amelia Earhart park. With rainy weather in the area during the week, riders were itching to get on the course to see recent changes to South Florida's FASTEST trail. Conditions cleared up early enough on Saturday to leave the course in nearly perfect shape for the race. Take all the well groomed berms and combine them with perfectly damp terrain and speeds were going to be through the roof!

Down2Earth events usually begin with mass starts according to the rider category (Expert, Sport, Base) and this time would be no different. In his first race back Julio would tackle the Sport 30+ class while Eric G, Alex and Eric N would continue in Base as a prep for the upcoming FSC race.

Julio would start with Sport just before us and get a solid start and stick to his pace. His goal today was to find a steady pace he could maintain for the three laps. The plan worked out fairly well completing his first race in a few months and finishing in 5th. Not a bad return. The rest of us would start off with the Base class. With all age groups bunched together, there was about 45 people ready to race, so a clean start would be key to a good race. The horn went off and we had a decent start. I'd get into the trail 4th wheel and Eric and Alex would be close behind in the low teens, and quickly began picking of riders to move up as they could.

As the race continued I came through Lap 1 in 3rd place but 4th was chasing closely. He'd get by me and snuck a decent gap as I grabbed a water bottle. Seems I got caught snoozing here and just couldn't chase back. Midway through the second lap I'd lose another spot while recovering from the repetitive climbing sections. I gave one final chase after I recovered but took a wrong turn into a short trail that wasn't part of the race, costing me time and effectively any chance of catching them. I'd finish 5th on the day.

Eric and Alex meanwhile had a battle on their hands for most of the race. They both came through lap 1 in 3rd place in their respective classes, but each had a chaser less than 10 seconds away. Funny thing about racing against family, even though they're in different classes, bragging rights will probably push Alex (Uncle) and Eric N (Nephew) as hard as a spot on the podium. With Eric still holding a small lead over his 4th place and a little more over his uncle, he'd hammer down a faster second lap to hold on to 3rd place in class by just 8 seconds! Alex meanwhile didn't catch Eric, but also put down a faster second lap to pull away from his chaser and claim 3rd place in class as well.

Turned out to be a solid day for the team with two podiums and everyone in the top 5 of their class. Next stop for us MIGHT be a 12 Hour race this weekend back at Oleta, but if not we'll be back in action at our home FSC event at Markham at the end of the month.  If you were out at La Rooota #7 tell us how your day went in the comments section! Enjoy some of the pics below thanks to Dry Goods.

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