The course looks like this: Flat first mile, climb 1500 ft in the second which is a solid pitch, go back down the third, flat to the finish for a total of 4 miles.
Second mile went straight up and the beers I had the night before had staled my legs. Several of the guys came back to me slowly. By 1.75 miles I was sitting in 4th with 5 guys trailing close and 3rd place about 40 ft ahead. I closed as much as I could, as we crested the peak and started down.
I blasted down recklessly. I had plotted this before the race and had to seize my chance to create some space. It worked nearly at the cost of my ankles and I put about 20 seconds on the chasers. It is effing fun to plow down trails. I drag stripped it.
The last mile was flat but my legs were crushed from the up and running the down like I had stole something. I looked back and had about 10 seconds to 4th place and 15 to a group of 5. I couldn't turn it over but I was desperate to get on the podium.
The mind started revolting and trying to talk me into easing up on the gas. I try not to negotiate with terrorists but sometimes they are quite compelling. I decided today was not the day and kept rolling. 150m to the end and I knew I was ok. Barely. 4th was 6 seconds back. 5-9th were 15 seconds back.
Overall: 3rd is solid. Felt ok considering it was the tail end of a 3 wk build. I am not fast right now but I am fit. Tomorrow is a day to try to juice a bit of speed out of the slow lemon that is my body.