Xterra Northwest Championships report

Greg says write a race report and I say, “how many words?” He finds out I knit and shamed back to skinny tires and curved bars.
Landen, Gail and I headed to Farragut State Park near Athol Idaho for the Xterra Northwest Championships this past weekend. Our Xterra Experience so far had been one of tough courses and gritty competitors (we call ourselves the Tribe). A call from my friend Volker Riedlinger on Thursday night had me wondering what event I had signed up for. Might as well bring your road bike, he said. 22 miles of the water line. Uhoh. I knew I should have done a few Hell rides. He wasn’t far off. Pretty flat, very fast. A road course on dirt. The only thing that saved the weekend from turning into a ” dude, that was one tough bike course” kind of event was the 52 degree water temp in good 1 foot blowing surf. Now that reminded us all where we were and what we had in front of us.
The day started with the Short course Xterra. 50 brave tribes men and women lined up on the shores of lake Pend Oreille for a 1/2 mile swim, one lap of the 11 mile bike course and a 5K trail run. Landen, having been thrown out of the long course event for not being of the legal age of 15 had a thing or two to show the assembled Xterra execs. The gun sounded and soon one lone yellow cap was all by itself ripping the strokes thru the surf and around the buoys. 11:35 later he was out of the water and into transition. Second place came in almost 5 minutes later in 16:14. Being 40 he wasn’t gonna let some little kid have his way with him. Oops, guess he will. Lando’s bike split of 56:06 was fastest of the day by a minute. He headed out on the 5K with a solid 6 minute lead and had he not decided to tour a mile or so of the 10K course when he missed an arrow it would have been a perfect day. As it was, once the volunteers setting up the aid stations got him turned around it was too little too late. He ended up in second by a mere 9 seconds. Best quote of the day. “I came in second? Wow, that’s great.” I want to be a kid again.
All in all it was a great weekend. We broke in our new TGD tops with some good sweat, a little blood but no tears. I was able to pick up the one spot in my age group for the World Championship in Maui, all the while managing to only cause minor embarrassment to my family at the June Moon after party. It’s a great race to try if you want to venture to the dark side.


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