An offering to the forest

By Barry Wicks

Flat tires are starting to really cramp my style. One flat tire can be attributed to many things. Five in three days is a curse. I think I need to go down to the chapel by the river and make peace with the forest nymphs tonight.

At least the trails were awesome. We did a ripping 20-mile lap of buff, bermy, rolling singletrack twice. Things started well, I was sitting second wheel and having fun, but then the horrible sound of air escaping hit my ears as we descended a smooth gravel road. I am running the burliest tires I can get, with extra sidewall protection and everything, but it just isn’t enough I guess.

Kris had a descent day, making time on Bishop, who had flat tire issues of his own, and now the top 3 on GC is separated by only a few minutes. I still have 3 more days of racing left, and if today was any indication, I should be good to go as long as I keep the air were it should be.

After my flat I was closing time on the front group and feeling good, riding lap 2 about 2 minutes faster than lap one, excluding the flat. Friday is the queen stage, so I just hope to get through tomorrows super d stage unscathed and finally get to race my bike for real that day.

Time to go make an offering up to the forest and take a nap.

More from TSE: Read all our racers’ exclusive dispatches from the race.


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