Anyway, the event went great - I took over an event series that I'd conceived in the first, so it was all good. 20 people at an Ethiopian restaurant. What lovely food and hosts!
So, Gloucester. I've missed it the first two years for various reasons, even feeling a snarky about it - it's so popular, but not even technical according to the reviews! Well, luckily a nice amount of mud on the course made for more running and sliding, which is just how I like it! On the down side, we'd had loud neighbor issues the next before, and long story short, I wasn't asleep until well after 2 AM. This on top of having just been sick on Friday, I was pretty woozy on the warmup.
So, I felt a little more nervous than usual, but then had a fun chat with one of the officials, enjoyed my crap staging position, made some friends, and we were off! I felt pretty psyched to be on my new tires and in general, I had a blast on the course. I swear I was grinning like crazy on every downhill, and I was loving the run-chicanes and riding on the just-packed-enough sand. The whole race was just pure fun (I mean, in that heinous cross way) and it helped to have stretched enough that my back didn't hurt. I have read reviews since the race that mention a "sketchy off-camber downhill" off the pavement - after mtn-biking all summer, didn't even feel it.
So it's sort of exciting, because I'm already feeling as good as I did at the end of last season, except it's only early October. Not that I'll get good or anything, but I look forward to seeing how much more I can put into the power.
(unfortunately I got a little *too* excited and pulled my calves during a run-up workout on Wednesday - duh!!! but I'll figure it out!)