Worlds…what an experience. I’ve been waiting for Lynda to break the silence but her DSL got shot down while she was gone…so here are just a few impressions.
As is typical in these things, the Cyclingnews piece and the results don’t speak to what went down in the ladies race. As early as lap 2 it was clear it was a race of Lynda vs. Rebecca Rusch. These ladies were killin’ it. F’n goose bumps.
Full on racing, lotsa smack going down. They were neck and neck until just before sundown, much like the lead 2 in the mens race.
Eventually Rebecca pulled ahead for good. She laid down an incredible race. She showed up ready for anything and it showed. Much respect – it’s hard to imagine a better ride. I honestly didn’t think she’d fare well against Lynda on that course. Lynda made her earn that worlds title, but earn it she did. Without Lynda it’d been a one horse show. I’ve ridden a bit with Juli Furtado in the 90’s when she was utterly dominant and Rebecca had that same look & demeanor I recall in JF.
Happy endings. Sally in 3rd used Lynda’s training plan in prep for the event. Sally was looking buff and, well, manic! She had to lay it down to get that 3rd spot.
Hey fox, you want these lights?
They were a secret weapon and as far as I can tell there wasn’t anyone with any more light on the course. On one of the first night laps Andy looked up and said something like “holy freak that’s bright” followed by “oh, it’s Lynda!” That was purty funny…after that we never had trouble knowing when she was close, the lights stood out 200 meters away.
Andy was another secret weapon. Well, not so secret cause he’s a sucker for a dirty, non-functioning bike. If you bring one to him you will leave with a clean, well tuned rig. He was working on somebody’s bike every minute of the night it seemed.
Apparently he’s not a Specialized fan. He still fixes ’em up tho.
Conditions were unusually hot for the region and attrition was high. Roughly half of the womens field had quit less than half way through the race. Particularly hit hard by the heat were the Aussies as they flew from winter conditions to 100F racing temps. I actually didn’t pay a ton of attention to the men’s race, but it was hard to miss what was happening at the front. Kelly Magelky would come by, followed by Tinker 10 seconds back for the first 21 hours & 17 laps. On lap 18 Tinker laid it down with a 1:02 lap time. That’s some 25 minutes faster than they’d been going for quite some time and one of the fastest laps in the race period. I would never have thought that possible, and have certainly never seen such a thing in a 24. One of the most impressive feats I’ve seen on a bike. Tinker is da man.
Even though I didn’t get to race it this year, I’m comforted knowing patience is the name of the game in endurance racing ;)