Leguna Seca

Desmond Griffith - Leguna Seca

Desmond Griffith - Oakland Tech, Junior Varsity

Desmond Griffith - Oakland Tech, Junior Varsity

I.  The Day Before: I got out of school early to pre-ride the course. My legs and lungs felt pretty good despite the fact that I didn't eat and drink a whole lot before riding. I took it fairly easy during my 2-lap pre-ride. Later, I had dinner at Louie, and tossed the disc /w/ the boyz. The disc hit a car and set off the alarm when we were tossing it in the Sandcastle Inn parking lot (Oops)! I got to bed sometime before 11 pm, in order to get some solid rest. 

II.  The Morning Of: I woke at 7:15 am, and we arrived at the course around 8:30 am, to watch the girls' starts and sing the national anthem! I ate a slice of whole grain bread with peanut butter whilst doing so. Arriving back at the pit, I consumed 2 hard-boiled eggs, and anxiously waited for the oatmeal to be ready. I loaded up on peanut-butter infused oatmeal (my trademark creation!) and had 2 bananas on the side. I made sure to hydrate and get my stuff and body race-ready, eating 2 light snacks 1.5-2 hrs before go-time. I did my trainer warm-up, got my race-plate on, and nervously pedaled up to staging. I was 1 position short of a call-up, and when we lined up, Tom was like, "Desmond, this is your course!" 

III.  5...4...3...2...1...Go!! We were off, and knowing that the gravelly part right before the fire road climb has taken out some racers at the start, I was extra cautious, and felt like I did not have the best start. At this point, I was likely in the middle of the pack or so. I used the steep road climb to pass some riders, catching and sliding past Finn towards the top. I proceeded down the very fun and flowy descent, not far behind Nathan and Conner. I made a pass or 2 on the short little climb in the open singletrack area, and felt like I had decent form as I winded down into couch canyon. During the climb out I caught Nathan and Conner, and the 3 of us rode as a pack for a bit, passing some D1'ers on the way. I lead up hurl hill, and we stayed together through most of the 2nd lap. I took a bottle at the feed, and stuck with Branden, from Clayton Valley Charter, for a bit. Coming into lap 3, I made a pass on the road climb, and made sure to go as fast as I comfortably could on the downhills. I passed some D2 and D1 riders on the 1st pitch of the climb and on hurl hill. Even though I had already taken a bottle at the feed, my dad almost forced me to take another, but I didn't feel like I needed it. Understandably, it was tough going into the 4th lap, but I felt like I stayed strong. Noah passed me on the 1st pitch outta couch canyon. I passed some D1 and one or two D2 at this point. I proceeded to eat my gel, but noticed that it bounced out and was hopelessly lying around somewhere on the trail, prone to being run over by some riders! Even so, I felt like I laid down a solid gap between some riders in my wave! I passed a JV Lightfighter, who I found out was Tristan (I remember some names of riders from prior races.) I made a pass on hurl hill, and did a hard effort on the gradual feedzone climb after. I went hard through the home stretch, but did not hold my line, and so Tristan got me in the final sprint. 

IV.  Recap: I felt strong on this course, and my lap times were very consistent! (Lap 1: 21:01, Lap 2: 19:51, Lap 3: 19:53, Lap 4: 19:51) This was also my first Norcal League top 10 finish (9th, JV D2), and I'm pretty sure that I will regain a call-up for next race! Very proud of the team(s), y'all killed it yesterday! Shalom!

Desmond Griffith, junior varsity boys, Oakland Tech 9 / 46

Lucas Binder - Leguna Seca

Lucas Binder - Oakland Composite, Freshman

Lucas Binder - Oakland Composite, Freshman

On Friday, I left school at around 1:00 to get to the preride. I arrived at the course at around 3:00 ready to go. I hopped on my bike, and went out on the first preride feeling pretty good about the uphills but concerned about the downhills. After preriding the course, I went back to the hotel, relaxed for a bit, then went to Louie’s for dinner. After dinner, I went home and went to sleep.

I woke up in the morning at around 8:00 ready to go. I packed up my stuff, hopped in the car and drove to the race course. When I got to the race course, I got some oatmeal before I was notified that Oakland composite could do the national anthem. I was interested so I ended up dragging Max Pryor up to the starting line to tell Coco that Oakland composite was going to do the national anthem and that they should come up. After a little bit of waiting, everybody came and we sung the national anthem. I watched all of the girls race starts and returned to the pit to warm up. I put my bike on the trainer and spun up, following coach tom’s instructions for warm ups and by the end of it I felt pretty good. About 15 minutes after the end of warm-up I went to the start and lined up in the call-ups section with Arlo. I had 7th call-up which was pretty cool and I was excited when I lined up on the starting line, ready to go. 5. 4. 3. 2. 1. GO! I was off, I felt pretty good as I raced up the hill, by the time we were at the top, I was feeling good and was in 5th place. When we went around the corner and went down the hill, I lost a couple places because I’m not that good at descending. Once we got back on to the dirt, I started passing people and moving my way up. Just as I was going down a downhill in the middle of the lap, I realized somebody had crashed on a downhill turn and was standing on the edge of the small single track. I went close to the hill to try not to hit them, but I ended up clipping the side of the hill, rolling off my bike and hitting my left elbow on the ground. I quickly hopped on my bike and continued on, but it was really hard to put weight on my elbow because it really hurt when I did. Luckily, we started on the uphill where I went really fast and started passing some D1 Kids. I finished my first lap in 9th place pretty tired after hurl hill and the sprint afterwards and I ended up losing a place to somebody. After that, I was back on the downhills and had trouble descending because of my arm and gave up a couple of places. Eventually, Arlo (who was on my tail most of the race) passed me and began to pull ahead by a lot. I continued having trouble descending, and by the time the downhills were over, I was probably 150 yards away from him. When I got to the hills, I broke into a sprint and started making up a lot of ground. I passed around 8 people and ended up catching up to and passing Arlo right before the beginning of hurl hill. I sprinted up hurl hill and continued on slightly tired but very much motivated. Once I got to the bottom of the hill leading up to the feed zone, I started my sprint. I quickly sped up and started closing in on the rider in front of me. As I got onto the final downhill before the flat near the finish, I realized that it was hard to breathe because I was working so hard, despite that I continued. I pushed on and passed the rider in front of me and crossed the finish line. I continued on to the stop area and layed down my bike and collapsed. I ended up getting 10th place despite my setbacks, which was pretty awesome. My arm really hurt and I ended up having to go to the medical tent to get a sling for it. After that, I went back to the tent and hung out with my friends. At around 2:00 I decided that I wanted to go home, so I could get my arm checked out. Sadly, the story doesn’t end here and after a long wait in the emergency room, I was told that I had fractured my elbow. I’m pretty bummed about that and I’m going to probably not going to be able to ride the next 1-2 races which sucks. Luckily, I had a good race, and I have a trainer at home so I can get stronger and faster for the next race I can race in. I’m trying to stay optimistic about the situation and hope to get better as soon as possible so I can resume riding with the rest of the team.

What went well:

I felt strong on the uphills and flats and I felt that I could really power through anything, especially the sprint at the end.

What I want to work on:

I need to work on descending and passing because I struggled with both of those and those two things led to me losing places and eventually crashing. I think I could also learn how to drink more during the race because that was kind of hard for me. I think being more intensive on bike skills for me could really help me, possibly even more than straight up working out at this point.

Lucas Binder, freshman boys, Oakland Composite 10 / 40

Dan McFadden - Leguna Seca

Dan McFadden - Oakland Composite, Varsity

Dan McFadden - Oakland Composite, Varsity

Wrace Wreport: I had a fun race. Had a great time watching batman with my boys the night before. Woke up in the morning. WEnt down to heckle but these course people kept just freaking out. 

Race: They started early and I didnt really feel the like pre race nerves. I didnt feel like i was racing. They said 3, 2, 1, go really quick and we were starting. My legs were not ready for that start and i got dropped kinda hard. I was off the back with some berkeley chillers at the start, but i figured i had to pass some dudes if i wanted to rally the descent so i hustled on the downhill and the uphill right before the dh to make a few passes. I was still a bit off the lead pack but we were heading into the downhill and i made up some solid time there. By the end of that i was baasssically  at the back of the lead group but up that climb i was really hurtin. My legs just could not dish out the power to get up that hill rapidly. I fell back a bit but made up some more time on the group ahead of me on that next descent. By lap 2 i was with this cowboy mostly. He was very nice, name started with a C. It was fun he would lag a bit on the descents but get me on the climbs.

On about the fourht lap i started feeling pretty good. I was tired but i was still powering along, having fun, so i kept the pace and the guy dropped off. I passed a few guys on the way including a few that had passed me in like lap 1

on the end of lap 4 i caught this cowboy who broke away from me like lap 2 there was a heated climb up hurl hill which i let him win so i could get him on the fire road after and i ended up dropping him a little bit. He stayed back behind me a ways for the rest of the race. The end I hammered and was glad to be done. But i had a god time. Back hurt a lot all the way through but the descents on that course rip and its not all flat and boring.

Daniel McFadden, Varsity Boys, Oakland Composite 15 / 26