The recent cold weather had seen a good foot of snow dumped over the week and there was no more putting off my first snow cross experience.
The first challenge was digging out the car... the next negotiating the various driving styles I encountered on the hour drive to the race venue.. afterthis nothing would be a problem.
The car showed todays was racing would be in a very manly -5 degrees ... the event car park park was already filling up as I arrived... you can never underestimate peoples desire to get out and ride :)
Near 60 riders and a few fields wiith 8" of snow covering the race was going to be amazing... made better still as although last week was my first sign on for Velo Club Moulin this was my first week wearing the colours...
The course had some really tough sections but on the flipside also had some compacted sections were you could get good speed up but overtaking would mean coming off the good line and fishtailing through deeper snow... doesn't get any more fun than this.
My start was less than ideal... 50 metres of clambering to get both feet in the pedals then riding squarely into a plastic marker post saw me distinctly mid field with lots of work to do.. seems like this is becoming the norm for me every week so it didn't worry me.
The racing went... sit in on the deeper snow sections into everyone elses groove... pop out on the wider compacted sections and steal a few places.... repeat.. any foot down on the floor would lead to you not being able to clip back in so running any sections was avoided.
I cut my way up through the field and could see a group of 4 riders ahead.. then I heard the commentator announce they were fighting for 4th place so the chase was on to get across to them... when I did we had a great battle.. everytime I got up and past I would panic a corner and dab loosing the ground and places I had made... I ended up sat in 5th place on the bell lap.. just behind 4th place.. as we got to a steep climb 4th place went to the side to look for the better line and I gambled and smacked it straight up the middle through the crap or mud and snow... both of us coming to the top close but I had a half wheel and nipped through... a quick blast out the saddle and a few turns later saw my best result so far with 4th place.
The power of Velo colours is great :)
Next week Northen CX champs.. weather and roads allowing i'm hoping to break the top quarter of the field.