5 november 2011

Day 3, La Ruta

Dan gives tumbs up at start line in San José

Me crossing the finish line in Turrialba

My great great support crew, from left; Ron-Me-Brad

Stevens best ride friend today just after finish day 3, Odd from Norway.

Black vulcanic ash cover your face, Steven dosen't seem to mind. 

Dan's big hero today, this guy lend his wheel to him!

Morning meeting in San José just before start. Team Blake's LotaBurger!

Getting a new wheel so he could take him slef and his bike across the finishline today. Yahoo!
Vulcano day starting out from San José. After a night at our hotel 30 min away from the strat we woke up at 04.00 am.  All of us feeling a little muscle soreness from our past 2 hard days, people were saying it's easier from here on. Picking up our bikes at the mechanicals tent, hopping and beleving they fixed everything we asked for the previus day. Later that would turn out be wrong. Handing out leders jersey at the start line, few seconds later with a "pang" fireing the startfeld set of. A long snake of bikes lingures it way through the newly awakened town of San José. People are gettering along the roads cheering us on, trafic already busy and we do what we can to avoid being hit. All racers knowing what's ahead of them next 2,5 hours or more for some, a long accent with constant incline to the top of the 3200 meter (9600 feet) high vulcano. Starting at 1600 meter (4800 feet). Views coming up here, looking out over San José is incredible. Biking thruogh some small mountain villages, wondering how they can support their living there. And we feeling like we where a part of Tour de France on this winding asphalt roads with school kids and familys standing next to us cheering. Also, here I found out about another mud sort that would be great to add to our mud scale. Cause there is not just asphlt as you could imagine. Black mud; vulcanic ash, leftovers from the volcano, it's like being blasted by black sand. What's goes up must come down is probably a good saying for this race, beacause when reaching CP 4 it benches of for some miles and than turn all downhill. I got down about one mile when it happend. Flat tier again, and ofcourse I than understand that they had not done anything to my bike last night. Later on I heard, when I got to the finish line that Dan's bike, our back wheel totaly broke. So same thing happend to him. He luckely could borrow a new one from another rider that had one extra wheel that fitted his bike. I had to run back up to CP 4, where I got help replacing my punkture tub to a new one. After I was worried all way down to get flat tier again, two reasons for that; I had no more reserv tub and this roads are crazy rocky and muddy. Or rocks, let's call them boulders. Some round and nice, others sharp that easily could punkture a wheel. I don't know how to explain this ride down, it's shakeing constantly for 3000 vertical meter downhill (9000 feet) and 25-45 km. Like drilling in concrete for hours, And what ever you do, don't let go of your handlebar, then you are done. While your hands are cramping up, you squeze even harder to cut the circulation to your fingers and hands. Finally the turn num. This is where most people get injured ever year I been told talking to the director of the race. It's not very steep, it's just long, very long and you have to be completly focused at all time. So you get both mentaly and pyshacly tyred. When I saw asphalt again I got a big smile on my face, I could not hold on much longer to my handlebar. It lead us down to the town of Turrialba. I finished at 49th place today. Over all, I'm on 78th place, Steven 110th and Dan on 168th place for tomorrow and last day of La Ruta de los Conquistadores 2011.

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