Ok so today was my first MTB race. It was 19.5 miles for citizens. I got to the course, and hooked up ith some people from my team. We got all warmed up, and ready to go. As were standing at the start it starts to drizzle, no big deal, right?
So the announcer tells us the rules and he yells GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, if you have raced WORS, you know the guy holds it for almost a minute. Anyways we go off, onto a gravel road/trail, it was really wid and One guy from my team is right on my wheel. About 1/4 mile from the start the guy right in front of me grabs his brakes and swerves right into my wheel. He goes down, I gow down, and my teammate goes down. Nobody is hurt bad, a few scratches, but no biggie. The guy who caused the crash is pissed because he snapped off his rear deraileur crashing into me. My bars are twisted around, my chain fell off, and I'm bleeding, but I get up and straighten out everything with my bike and head off.
I now realise my rear deraileur/ hanger is broken/bent and my bike only shifts down. That sucks. I start spinning like mad because its stuck in like the 28t in the back, and I need to catch back up. About 1 1/2 miles later I catch the entire pack. There is a huge bottleneck going into some semi-technical singletrack. I stood in line for 2 maybe 2.5 minutes before even getting to go. So now the entire race is strung out. But I just keep reeling people in. It starts raining harder,Im covered in mud, and my glasses are fogged. I come through the start/finish area and I see a guy from my team on the side lines and he's telling me to go faster. I tell him my rear D is broken and I have 3 gears, and some old guy yells out "thats more than enough, get up there" I thought that was pretty funny. 2nd lap the elites lapped us. I fall down in two super slippery off camber turns. Nothing painful though. The lap is relatively uneventful though. I sprint the best I can with my "limited" gearing.
I ended up 50th out of 142 finishers, and 3 out of 8 in my age group. Its exciting, but without that first crash I would have had a serious shot at winning. 2nd place was 20 secconds ahead. Over 20 miles the lack of gearing made more of a difference than that. But more races like this and I'll move up to sport. That would be cool.