Tuesday, January 14, 2014

CIRREM preview. Kinda.

*This post started out as an email to the CIRREM founder, KC. In the process of cutting and pasting parts from the email to the blog it got all screwy (looks fine here all kinds of weird on my end). Instead of rewriting it in its entritey (I could try but it would never get published) I am going as is.*

Although the 2014 edition of the CIRREM sold out 30 minutes after registration opened I managed to get on the waiting list.
A week or so later there was an opening and I ponied up the $$ and I was in.

When I moved to Iowa in March '13 I wanted to put gravel riding and racing in my life. 

And I've done just that (The Renegade Gents Race and the Iowa Spring Classic from Cumming - drafts for both posts on both were written. I should proof and post them)

With the CIRREM I fear I have bitten off more than I can chew.



Sunday I set out on the bike with the intent to ride the complete CIRREM course.
It didn't work out that way. 
Woo.. it was brutal.
I did most of the north west loop. 
Hilly greasy gravel.
I missed bits of the actual course due to wrong turns.
But I definitely got a taste of what is in store February 22nd.

Bombing down the hill on Old Portland Ave from the North McDonald cemetery the greasy gravel made me super nervous and the truck coming up the hill and fish tailing because it was so slick didn't not help.


I got to the bottom and thought how happy I was that I wouldn't have to ride up it. 
But a missed turn while coming back south on N River Trail meant that I had to do just that.
 Ended up walking the last bit. 

I bailed off the gravel when N River Trail hit Cumming Road.
I rode the pave back to the Cumming Tap (probably not much shorter than sticking with the route but it was smoother) . Had a recovery beer and called in the "team car" for pick up.
I was cooked.

In hindsight I should have ridden a different bike. Although the Colnago with 28c tires is great on gravel a cyclocross bike with  knobby tires and a more up right position would have more comfortable, in the long run,  for that slick hilly terrain.

Fun all the same. Brutal but fun.
CIRREM is gonna hurt.

The actual CIRREM route: http://connect.garmin.course/6

What I acutally rode : http://www.strava.com/activities/105978453

A few photos in no particular order: 


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