Sunday, March 16, 2008

50 km Classic ski race 3/15/2008

So this weekend I did a 50km (31mi) classic ski race. I decided Friday night and quickly waxed my new classic skis. OK, they weren't new but some old skis that our fine ski coach here at WSC had laying about and sold to me cheap. I had no problems with my insulin as I did during the Super Tour. It was fine when I left town and fine when I started the race. I just ate a GU every 45 minutes with plenty of water. For a map go to http://www.cbnordic.org/

I used these skis on a 10km race last two weeks ago and they worked pretty well. In the 10K race they were a little slow coming down the hill so I probably lost a minute on the guy ahead of me. I ended up coming in pretty close to the winners. I was the first "citizen" but there weren't many citizens (obviously no one real fast showed) as the race was not publicized much.

So the 50 K started in Crested Butte at the High school at 8:00 and basically did all the Nordic trails that the Crested Butte Nordic center grooms and some twice. The area near the high school is called the Town Ranch or "Poop Loop" as dogs are allowed on it. There are more dogs than people in CB by the way. When I waxed my skis, all the Internet weather reports were giving the temperature readings for CB at around 20F at 8:00 and warming to 30 around noon when I would probably be getting done. So I started off by putting wax rated for 20-32F but then luckily decided to put some on that was rated 14-25 on last. This was a good thing because the car said it was -1F as I drove into CB so my wax would be a little slow but not terrible.... I quickly put on some green kick wax on for the colder temperature also. It was actually kind of good that it was cold with fresh snow because when you used wax on Nordic skis if it is warmer or icy it is hard to get the wax to stick.

Classic Nordic skis are cambered so that as you stand on both skis the part in the middle under your foot doesn't actually touch the snow. This is where the kick wax goes. When you ski, you have to do a "oingo boing" move (as they teach the kids) of bouncing to compress the ski on one foot so that the wax will stick to the snow, you can push off and glide on the other ski. This is repeated and off you go with your pole pushing on the opposite side of the ski that is kicking. People that are really good at this can go very fast and if the wax is right can kick and glide for quite a ways and climb very fast on hills. Another issue with these types of skis is to make sure you are the correct weight to compress the ski.

So I put on an extra jacket a the start. I shouldn't have because I got toooo hot on the first lap around the flat poop loop and stopped for a couple of minutes to take it off as we came past the start and headed off toward a more hilly section. You may want to note that there are lots of dogs here when it warms and my jacket is now on the ground. My kick wax was working well and my glide wasn't too bad in the cold weather.

We skied for an hour or so over some pretty big hills (one trail is called Mordor so it must be bad) and a bit of flats before we had to walk or ski on the icy road across town to another section of trail by Peanut lake. Here we did two laps with some hilly sections. I was in 5th here (OK only 8 people showed for this one but the first 4 were moving pretty fast). The two guys just ahead of me were just a couple minutes up and I planned to stick with them and maybe pass them if they got tired. I finally caught one of the guys but the other had a burst of energy and sped up (he actually won the Super Tour last week)! My shoulder began to twinge and I was having pain when I pushed with my left arm. My legs were tired but not too bad. I finally climbed the last hill on this section and now had to go down a automobile road down to the Nordic center where there were some more trails. I saw that two of the guys had skied in the fresh snow on the side of the road. I skied for a minute but there was gravel so I walked ran the rest of the way. I lost a couple of minutes on the guy ahead of me but I didn't want to trash my old skis....

I got to the Nordic Center and just had to go up a big hill, make a loop and come back. I was getting ready to be off the skis. I finished in 4:19:03. It was pretty fun race in a pretty town but had some sore areas in my legs that hadn't been sore this year skiing, my shoulder was sore and I had a couple blisters on the tips of my toes. I took the town bus to the car at the high school and picked up my jacket. Someone was nice and hung it on a sign. I also noticed as I put it on that some dog wasn't nice and had lifted his leg on it. OH well I was cold.....

I went and had a pita and came home. We skied a short ski with Anne and the kids. Julian in the backpack and Lila skied or rode in the sled the next day. Then Scott my GT partner showed and we skied a quick lap. I wasn't that much worse for wear.... Just a bit sore in the gluts and hams....

1 comment:

Matthew Tyler said...

Congratulations. Probably many people don't know how hard a 50 K classic race is. Matt!