Monday, April 27, 2015

BMX Racing is Hard - And so is Practice

 After much hemming and hawing, I made my way to St. Peters BMX to make some practice runs.  The track has been around for 15 years or more, and it was the last place that I raced during my 12-year BMX career.

Things have changed a bit since the fall of 1991, the date of my last BMX race.  One is obvious:  my age.  Also, the tracks have become much, much more technical, requiring a level of skill that I just didn't need from 1979 until 1991. In those days, I could just muscle my way out of the gate and around most tracks around the country and things were peachy.  Even if I was still as strong as I was in those days, I would not be very successful using that old tried and true method.

There are jumps EVERYWHERE.  One must time one's efforts precisely, not merely pedal hard.
I arrived at 6:30pm and paid the nice lady $5 for a practice session.  I told her I hadn't been on a BMX track in this century and she laughed.

By 6:35pm, I was on the gate.  It was the most natural thing to balance on the gate.  It was like I never stopped.  When the gate fell, it was a different story.  The jumps came out of nowhere.  I hardly had time to pedal before running into another jump that wanted to smash my bones and crush my skull.  But, no...I didn't let it happen.  I was cautious and I lived to ride another day.  I became happier with my gate starts, but then my sore arms and muscles told me to stop.

By 7:05pm, that was it.  Twelve or thirteen runs around the track is all I have in me. 

I will be sore tomorrow.

1 comment:

Steve Menendez said...

St Peters? We went out there for some practice sessions and a few races a while back. Enough for my son to win a couple of trophies.