So, I signed up for my first mountain bike race. The race is the Pace Bend Race on April 8-9, 2017. I'm a little bit nervous about the idea of racing against other people, but a friend told me just ride like its a group ride. That sounds like a plan! I'm going to write about my experience and where I found information about getting ready for my first official race.
The governing body of the race I'm going to is TMBRA (Texas Mountain Bike Racing Association). I went to their page and started to look around. I found the rule book and learned lots of things. First, I'll be in what they call Category 3 (Cat3). There are 3 categories in mountain bike racing and this is the bottom or starting place. It's for new racers. You can register for the race right on the website, but you also need one more thing, a license from USA Cycling. Second, there is a page specifically for first-time racers. They hold a clinic with all the frequently asked questions and I have to go find out in the forum when/where it is going to be.
In Cat3, I have the option to register for an annual license or a one-day license from USA Cycling. I couldn't find a one-day license option on the website, so I just signed up for the regular one year license in case I decide to do another race. The website had lots of info to add and looked very official. It took me about 15 mins and cost $100.
Training For the Pace Bend Race
Getting ready for the pace bend race, I thought it would be a good idea to go ride the trail a few times. Yesterday was my first loop on what I think will be the race loop. My time was slow. I've been told I should try to be 50mins to be competitive. My time was 1hr 51mins... I have a lot of work to do.