It's a little late in the season (Thanksgiving weekend, Ed.) for a race report of the Bear Creek Nationals last July. But, I keep finding myself thinking about the upcoming one in 2014 and what I could do differently to have a better result. Back in July, I raced with a group of 9 women in the cat 1 35-39 class. I didn't have any great expectations, as I figured all the women would be super fast and I only rode the course one time a few days earlier, so I didn't really know the lines.

Plus, shorty before the start, I found out the course was pretty slick from rain the previous day. We were supposed to do 3 laps, which tends to benefit me, since I'm normally better with longer races. But, right before the start, it was dropped to 2 laps due to the conditions. During the first lap, I don't think I pushed as hard as I should have at the sprint and up all the climbs. I seemed to be feeling too happy, so I probably wasn't pushing hard enough. I felt real good on the descents, although lots of areas were quite slippery. I was happy that I was passing many other women from other categories, who weren't so confident on the rocks, which I happen to love. The second lap I was feeling even better. A bit more confident and had some friendly conversations on the descents with the other ladies to keep us all going. I was feeling pretty good mentally and physically. And wished I had one more lap. My lap times only ended up being about 30 seconds apart. Finished 7th out of 9. It was a learning experience on a brand new bike, so I was happy with my result. And plan to push myself harder next year for a better result and yet still have a great time racing either way.