“Practice until you get it right. Then practice until you can’t get it wrong.”
Sometimes you have to be mad enough or fed up enough to push through and do what it takes. To see my 3 ½ hour time cushion evaporating was enough. I rode as fast as I could. The terrain here was smooth along the ocean. The course was on the beach at one point.
A crowd was gathered around a spot where a giant washout had you going down into a gulley and back up. I spied a natural jump that I hit when we pre-ran. I thought I’d give the crowd a thrill and I launched about eight feet in the air off of it, employing my motocross skills. It felt great.
The morning breeze came in off the ocean, but there was no fog. I put miles behind me. I felt great. I couldn’t make a new beginning, but I could make a new ending.
I saw my crew at 7:47AM. They were thrilled to see me in great spirits. I was not losing time anymore, but gaining some. They had a warm breakfast burrito and a coffee for me. It was so good! I gulped the coffee and was gone again. I had somewhere to go.
If I was a night watchman and had to stay awake for 36 hours or more, I could not do it. But, when you are on a dirt bike with your life and safety threatened, your survival mind wakes up and pays attention. When there is a conveyor belt of fast moving hazards coming at you, and you are exerting yourself physically, you aren’t going to fall asleep that way. Just don’t stop.
I pressed on. I knew there was a huge wide silt field coming up. In the riders meeting I overheard some drivers saying there was a way to go around it to the left. When it came, I went left and found it! Before the next turn I went back to the corner of the course to catch the Virtual Check Point. Such is the value of sharing information.
I pulled into the chase truck stop at mile 673 in Colonet. Always glorious to see my team. Late in the race, teams who chase other race vehicles look for bikes that begin with a 7. They know we are Ironmen, and to have made it this far…they wave with a different kind of respect. As I pulled out a team of 12 crew members waiting for a buggy cheered me on along with my own team.
A quarter mile later a steep long hill climb, but gravity did not exist for me.