We did it! We just completed our first ever Elite Mountain Bike Orienteering (MTBO) race and it just happened to be at the 2012 World Championships! We all finished in one piece and so did our bikes - mission accomplished.
The day started out with breakfast at 7:30 and then we waited until 9:30 to load up in our sweet Ford Transit Van (looks more like a sprinter van) to head out to the race site. Rebecca was first to go at 11:44 so we had plenty of time but we are learning that it takes us twice as long since we are figuring out the roads and everything involved with driving in a foreign country. Abra has pretty much mastered driving our sweet rig, even with 2 back seat drivers, and we made it to the venue with plenty of time to spare. The temperature is intense right now - I prefer not to know what the actual temp is because I think I would whine a little (ok, maybe whine a lot) so I don't have a clue. But I do know it's hot! Maybe 90???
And we're off! Rebecca at 11:44, Abra at 11:53, me (Sue) at 12:29. My goal was to race cautiously so I don't make any major errors and I think I accomplished that. I relaxed a little to control #1 so I can get comfortable with the map and then I slowly picked up speed along with confidence. We had 10 controls and I definitely made some errors, but not upset at all. There were a few where I knew I was close but just a little off and had to spend some time making sure I knew exactly where I was on the map so I don't do anything silly - I've done silly in the past.
Made it to control #10 and then sprinted to the finish! Yeehaw, I'm done! Went straight to the shade and Rebecca and Abra were there as well - TEAM USA, MTBO! We talked about our errors and learned that one of our new friends made a 90 second error. I think I made a 9 minute error, maybe more :) She is probably not threatened by Team USA.
We were all psyched about completing our first MTBO race and we all had a blast racing. The singletrack was a hoot and the orienteering was so much fun. I'm now scheming on how I can become a better racer...hmmm....
That's a wrap! We were heading back to our van and saw the Croatia Team taking a team picture in front of their flag so we did the same. One of their teammates even jumped into our photo. It's been great meeting the other teams, I'm excited it's only day one of racing and we get to do this a few more times.
Now I'm back resting before spinning into the center of town to find some ice-cream.
More to come later and hopefully some photos. ENJOY IT!