Let me start by saying I loved this race. The Steamboat Stinger course had everything that makes a great endurance race. Long climbs, super steep challenging climbs, short punchy climbs, technical single track, flowing single track, long descents... just 52 miles of awesomeness! This one goes down as one of my top favorite races for sure. If you haven't done it, I strongly suggest you do. At about 7,000 feet of climbing, it's a tough one but has plenty of rewarding descents. When you're done with the race, there's live music, food, beer, fun and friends waiting. Steamboat Springs is also a fun place to hang out so might as well make it a weekend trip with friends and family. Had a great time!
Going into this race I didn't set very high standards for myself. After a month off from endurance, this race was meant to get me back into the swing of things before my last two races. Everything went smoothly. I conserved early, and had some energy left in the tank for later. This is how it should work. My previous races this season I would attempt to conserve, but my tank would end up completely drained long before the finish line since it was never full to begin with. Although I still wasn't at top form, I felt better than I have all season. There's a good kind of pain and suffering you get when endurance racing, and there's a bad kind that just digs you deeper into a hole making the next race even more miserable. I've had too many races like that lately, and it feels good to be on the other side of that now. Park City Point to Point is next, then Winter Park 50. The game plan is to finish the season strong, and for once things are trending up. Game on!