The Bonelli Pro XCT is easily a top three US course in my mind and all the sweetest racing just went doing in this wonderful second weekend in March. Since the race was only 5 or so hours from my house, I made the easy drive over Thursday night. Considering my cross country race was going down on Saturday and my short race on Sunday, this gave me plenty of time to get settled in and pre-ride the course. Plus, I go the chance to hang out with my totally awesome new teammates Shayna, Grace, and Alicia.
Friday was a early morning rise with a day that included team pictures as well as shredding some laps on the course. Around 7am we went to what was the most awesome hotel breakfast consisting of every type of amazing omelets and potato’s. After the stellar breakfast was inhaled, we set off to the course to get some super sick team photos done and pre-riding/ leg openers. I through down a few laps getting to know all the super shreddy lines and I also hit up a hot lap to get my car/driving legs ready to be rockin for the suffer fest that was sure to be awaiting me in just 24 hours time.
With my race being at 8:30am, Saturday was another early morning wake up call. I hit up some oatmeal and then it was off to the races. The jr girls and I arrived at the team trailer and I slowly got my self race ready as I went through the course in my head. With some unfortunate luck the weekend prior due to some wrong food ingestion or pre race mix-up resulting in some super bad legs, I made sure to do everything 100% leading up to the race to ensure my fast legs were going to show up with me on the start line. I was on the first row ready to rock. Start gun went off and had a perfect position about 4th going into the single track. Keegan Swensen was leading and unfortunately one of the two kids between him and I cracked super hard resulting in some super bad hold up allowing Keegan his chance o open up his gap. From here He set of the front with about a 6 second lead in front of a hard charging group of four of us. With a three other hella fast guys, I knew we could bridge the gap within a lap or so. With constant battles between the four of us to lead into every single track, we were throwing down a killer pace. This was until on our last lap were we began to play games with one another and everyone no longer wanted to do any work. I knew this would again give Keegan his chance to become uncatchable, so I change tactics and started to race for 2nd. With a half of a lap to go I made we got caught up behind some lapped riders and with me riding in the back of our group of three I ended up getting gapped. On the road before the long climb just about 2k to the finish, I drilled it and caught the group. As we made our way up the climb, on eof the riders through down a very well times and placed attack which of course was the worst timing for me considering I just go back on and demolished the group. One went with him as I mashed the pedals to reel them back in. I was able to drop the guy on my wheel, but could only hold the 10 sec gap to to the finish. I ended up 4th and couldn’t of been more stoked on the awesome racing that just went down. There is really nothing like racing for an hour plus, throwing the hammer down with three other riders. Next up was the stomach turning short track the following afternoon, but first I think a little post race coffee is in order.