DNS means “did not start.” But really, it was more like: did not get out of car. I was pumped about this morning’s race, but here’s what happened…
The directions to Siena Lake landed me in the middle of Broomfield with no course in sight. When Google maps said I had arrived at my destination, I was sitting idle in the middle of the road at a four-way intersection. It was 7:15 a.m. and still dark out. A nondescript warehouse in the distance was barely lit and a few cars buzzed by on the highway to my left. I was so lost. And annoyed. And it was raining. It had been raining almost all night it seemed. The roads were still slick and I’m guessing the course would be a soupy, grassy, muddy mess.
I U-turned several times unable to find a sign or a parking lot or any riders warming up. Finally, a car whizzed by with two bikes on the back so I hung a quick left and followed them down the road.
Cones! Tape! Bikers! Finally!
I pulled into the first available spot and sat in silence assessing the scene. From my warm and toasty car, it just looked cold out there. And wet and muddy just like I expected.
I knew I wasn’t prepared for this. I didn’t bring a buff or my winter gloves. I hadn’t switched out my tires for the knobby ones a friend loaned me. In the early and dark morning hours, I knew I’d forgotten my second pair of socks, too. Damnit.
As my windshield wipers flicked back and forth, I watched a few guys go by on some practice loops. Their shoes were already caked and their backs were streaked and spotted.
I wasn’t ready for the race and I wished I were. I was excited to see what I could’ve done in less-than-ideal conditions; that’s what a true CX race is made of. I could’ve looked at the weather one extra time before I went to bed and I could’ve asked a friend to help me with my tires last week. But I didn’t. So I sat and stared and pouted a little.
I threw back the rest of the coffee I’d picked up on my way to the race. It was luke warm, just like my feelings about the day. I didn’t feel the fire. So I put my belt back on and left. I headed back home to go for a trail run and enjoy some coffee. It ended up being exactly what I needed and what I could handle.
Next weekend my parents are in town. They’ll get to watch me race and I’ll definitely be prepared, rain or sleet or snow or shine. I think I’ll be a little more refreshed, too.
You win some and you don’t start some. It’s ok.