Friday, February 27, 2015

2014 Oak Valley 24 uur

31 January was the date for the annual 24 hour race at Oak Valley, Elgin. My brother once again agreed to second for me as well as his son who also entered. 

I arrived at Oak Valley shortly after 10:00 and found us a nice spot under some trees at the far end of the camping ground. Boet and Son arrived at about 10:30. We collected our number and readied ourselves fir the 12:00 start.

Race briefing was at 11:45 and Maurant Botha asked for a minute silence in memory of my son Adre, who died the previous week in a cycling accident. I decided to go ahead and do the 24 hour as it would give me some time alone for some reflection. 

We started at 12:00 with the customary Le Mans style sprint across the rugby field. My first lap took me just over 40 minutes. Lap two was my fastest lap at 39:04. I decided to do six laps before I would take my first break. At 40 minutes per lap that would be 4 hours riding time. The last 2 laps took 44 minutes each.

I had a quick stop at 16:10 and set again on some more laps while I felt fresh and the sun was still shining. I did a further 3 laps before I decided to take another rest. The next lap took me 59 minutes, including my resting time. I therefore did 9 laps during the first 8 hours 50 minutes. From here I took a rest at every second lap. My normal lap time was down to 50 minutes a lap and about 1:10 when I took a rest. It was mow getting dark and this called for increased concentration. My lap time moved out to 55 minutes. 

At 00:15 I saw that the battery of my Garmin was getting low, so it was time to recharge with the help of my Power Monkey. This worked well and soon I was just about at full power again. On the next lap in, I discarded the Power Monkey and was back on battery power only. Three quarters of the way through the lap, the Garmin suddenly went dead. I tried switching it on, but to no avail. At the end of the  lap I connected the Power Monkey again. It came back on and I set off on another lap. On passing the transition point, I notice that although the Garmin was on, it was frozen. At the end if the lap I came in again and tried to revive it, but to no avail. After a couple of efforts matters got worse and it froze in startup mode. It eas 02:15 and I decided that this was the right opportunity to take a rest. I leveled the driver's seat in my car and took a nap. It was pretty cool and I had two jackets and a tracksuit top on. After a while I dosed off and when I woke up it was 05:12. Up to this point I did 16 laps in 14:41.

I got going immediately, but at a very leisurely pace. The next lap took 56 minutes, but there after I stopped at each lap and was taking about 1:15 to complete a lap. I started my last lap at 11:04 and had to make sure I only crossed the finish line after 12:00 or else I had to do another lap. Something I really did mot feel up to after 24 hours in the saddle. My timing was pretty good Nd I crossed the finish line at 12:02.

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