Well, it's been a while, hasn't it? No blogging or any real building has gone on since the race- a cold, an in-law invasion, and a return to the day job saw to that.
Despite the fact that I pushed it up to the last minute on the bike build and only had a couple of miles on it, the bike performed flawlessly! Leadville marked the first time I had ridden a 29er more than 1/4 mile (test rides I've done on other builds) and it suited me perfectly. The fit was perfect (duh, it's a custom) and the 29" wheels did what everyone says they do- roll fast, smooth the bumps, and fly through the sand. And the MTB drop bars are quite possibly the greatest things ever! I think you would see a lot more of these on the trail if people would give them the chance.
Too bad the rider wasn't as good as the bike though. The race went great at first, I pushed it hard up to the 50 mile mark and was 45 min ahead of my time from two years ago. The downhills were kinda rough with no suspension and I had to stop to rest my arms a few times from the arm pump I got by squeezing those canti brakes with two fingers. I was feeling the fatigue on the way back, but it didn't really get me until the last big climb up the Powerline Trail at mile 75. Ninety percent of folks have to walk a good bit of this and it seemed like I bonked the second I got of the bike to push. I ended up 45 min SLOWER than my last time by the end! 11:35 was not the way I wanted to finish. But what can you do except go back the next time for a shot at redemption? We'll see..........
Here's a seat cluster shot of the Leadville bike. I really like how the cable hanger came out, just like it was planned ;) !