Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween Cross

The front lawn Sunday morning.

So, this post might not seem that relevant anymore, since Halloween has come and gone, but I still need to inform the masses (the small mass that it is) about my back of mid pack cross results. Waking up Sunday morning to a blanket of snow and cold temps, I already knew that I'd be doing the cross race that morning, but I couldn't figure out for the life of me what I was going to wear..decisions, decisions. The problem with having bike clothes of different materials, weights etc is trying to figure out the best combo for the weather. In the end, I just packed a ton of stuff, and knowing that my ass was gonna get wet...lubed up.

Lathered up good with this stuff so my ass would, um, feel good while racing?

It was pretty friggin' cold for the start of the race, but I felt ready, clothing-wise. Got the heads up from Glen that the start of the course had some monster puddles and trying to keep the feet dry would be essential. So I threw on my Gore Tex socks, hoping they would do the trick. Off the start, the puddles were DEEP, but my feet stayed dry, and stayed that way for the rest of the race. The problem though, were my fingers. It didn't take long until it felt like I had blocks of ice instead of fingers on the end of my hands. It got so bad that I had to look at my shifter to make sure I was hitting the right lever. As the race went on, I started to get some feeling back, but after the race, my finger tips were BURNING as sensation started to creep back. This was by far the wettest, muddiest and greasiest cross race of the year so far, but for me, one of the most fun.

Don't mind the blank expression...I was focused on thawing out my fingers.

A rinse with the garden hose, some soaking and two washes got my jersey and gear clean.

Brakspear Triple, strong ale.

In keeping with my tradition of a cross and beer post, this week's offering is a strong ale from Brakspear brewing, Brakspear triple.  It is a triple fermented beer, with two fermentations in the Brakspear "Double Drop" system (which remains a mystery), and the final fermentation in the bottle. With a higher alcohol content (7.2%), I was expecting a sweeter tasting beer, and that's exactly what I got. There was a hint of fruit in the taste and aroma, and the sweetness was not over-powering. This was balanced by a long finish that wasn't too bitter. This went down nicely after dinner, coupled with some dark chocolate.

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