Today marks the start of BCBR 2018. In a few minutes I’m going to head up to Duncan to watch the first stage, and I am full of nervous excitement and anticipation. It’s been building all week.

This has had me reflecting on last years race quite a bit. Tackling that long held dream and excelling at it, exceeding my expectations, was a truly amazing event. I learned that I am capable of more than I give myself credit. To have my family share in that really added to how special that race was.

I think about the race often. I think back to the stages, the transportation, the awe that I was actually there, the camping life, the amazing and plentiful food, the trails, and the people. I have reminders of the race in my office and I see them every day. I have a BCBR sticker on my bike that I see every time I’m on my MTB. BCBR alumni instantly have a connection and something to talk about. Before I had done the race I had read that it was a life changing event and that regular riding isn’t the same after the race. I agree with this 100%. Riding was ‘different’ afterward, but I can’t really put a finger on what.

And now it starts again. I’m looking forward to seeing the start of the race from the spectator perspective. I plan to cheer racers on at the start, then grab my bike and find a spot on the trail to watch and cheer some more. I wish them all the best of luck, and a safe journey.

Inside I’m wishing I was on the start line with them. Some day I’ll race it again.

Tzouhalem Stages

On Sunday I was up in Duncan and rode in the first ever Tzouhalem enduro. One thing I learned is that I am terrible with trail names. I’ve ridden at Tzouhalem a number of times before but really only knew a couple trail names. The Island Cup Series team posted the Trail Forks listing of the stages but I couldn’t tell if I had been on the trails before or not.

The event itself was a lot of fun. It turned out I had ridden pretty much all of the trails before, but I still felt like I was racing some of the stages ‘blind’. Some of the trails I had only been on once before so didn’t really know what was around each corner. Other trails I was familiar enough with but didn’t know where the end of the stage was.

Overall I was pretty happy with how the race went. No crashes, one close call with the front starting to wash out. I knew I was pushing on some corners. I think I could have pushed harder through some of the earlier stages, but I was having some wrist issues during the week and wanted to last all five stages.

According to Strava I set quite a few PRs on the trails. I really felt like I was flying down Double D, which is always a fun trail to blast down. Add in a closed course and it is easy to say that Double D was my favourite stage. I think I also did great with the chip sensors this race. I actually got a comment from the volunteers at the end of stage 2 on how well I was able to tap and get the beep.

After the last stage it was back to the parking lot for some recovery food and drink.

Results were posted later and I placed 29/61 in Intermediate Male. Tzouhalem Race Placement

This has left me in 18/72 for the series. Series Placement (4 races)

One of the things I really liked about this race was that the intermediates raced the exact same course as the experts. I’ve always been curious about how well I stack up against the experts but have never been able to really compare times. Well, my total time was 14:58.0. The last placed expert had a time of 14:41 😂 I would have been DFL in expert. Maybe I am in the corret category after all.