1. Chef

    Chef ODSC Executive

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    My buddy Rob (Wudzrydr) and myself have been doing the OO enduro series this year. Rob has been doing very well for his first year of racing. Me, well, I'm doing ok too. Next up was the Corduroy Enduro. I've done it before so I decided I'd ride the first day and work it the second day (workers points). Rob, would have no part of worker points and was going up to do both days.
    The Tuesday before the race I started coming down with a cold, by Thursday it was full blown and could barely talk, breathe and was sweating buckets. I decided to persevere (MISTAKE) and met Rob on the Friday evening to head up to Gooderham to register and attend the riders meeting. We arrived to all the usual hustle and bustle of people prepping, sound checking and giving their bikes the once over for the fateful event. We sound checked our bikes, walked into the hall and up to the registration desk and announced we wanted to ride on the same minute. The lady at the desk replied With a big smile and a chuckle "sure, you can go one minute 1 or 41". Rob and I laughed and said "ONE". We had ridden the Terra Nova a few weeks prior and had minute seven which worked well (LESSON). Now all we had to worry about we're the Pros, Experts, Vet Experts, and every other fast guy hunting us down and roosting us while yelling "Thank You" as we gave way. At the riders meeting it was announced that there were some changes to the route that would cut it down by 35km. I liked the prospects of this based on how I was feeling trying to deal with the cold. We walked out of the hall trying to reassure ourselves that we had made the right line choice. We loaded the bikes and headed back to Sandaraska to spend the night at our campsites.
    I scoffed down a bunch of cold meds and went off to bed. Rob laid awake all night in his tent side trailer listening to the torrential rain (I slept through most of it). In the morning a bucket in the back of the truck had over two inches of rain water in it. Gulp, it was going to be sloppy (LESSON ... 2 inches of overnite rain on Canadian Shield and loam is much worse than sloppy) !
    The next morning I got up feeling no better, took another handfull of cold pills, got ready, met Rob and headed up to Gooderham after a quick stop at timmies. We snagged a great parking spot close to the outdoor park toilets complete with warm and cold running water ... This would come in very handy at the end of the day! We threw up the pop up tp keep us out of the rain which still had no end in sight. Forty minutes to key time we started getting ready. When we arrived at the start line there was the usually crowd of bikes and spectators. As we manouvered our bikes to the font of the pack we could hear the announcer building the hype for the 60th Corduroy Enduro. It all seemed very exciting and at 2 to go we pushed our bikes up on the ramp. Cameras flashed and pictures were taken. Our names were announced and history was in the making , The 60th Corduroy Enduro was about to begin (according to the announcer). The flip cards flipped to 01, we kicked the bikes to life and were off. I rolled off first ... And led the way to the Endurocross section. Now to make it through without falling. I was all nerves as there were lots eyes on us. I played the test safe lined up all the logs and completed it without a spill. The course was good as we were the first through.

    Its getting late so ... To be continued

    The first transit to the special test went well (the first year I did the cord I wiped out in the first water on this transit and was wet the entire day. Rob was on the gas and I was choosing good lineS and making few mistakes. The weather was rain and in my infinite wisdom I had decided to forgo my five year old tattered mx pants that tuck in my boots (my wife and kids laugh at me for still wearing them) and instead wear a pair of goretex klim pants that had been a gift(MISTAKE).The pants were great on the road section and kept me nice and dry but, when I started going through water holes the water came in numerous other ways soaking in and increasing their weight.

    We made it to the first check, got our digital time stamp (cool system) and headed into the test. The trails were greasy but really manageable as there were only a few riders ahead of us. We both rode well, got on the gas when we could, weaves through some nice single track and posted very respectable times when we came out through the MX track. So far the ride was shaping up to be a good enduro.

    From this point until gas the trails got more difficult. I'm sure they were nothing like they were for the guys on minute 40 but we managed to plod along and arrived at the second test with two minutes to spare. We lined up and were off when the cards flipped to 01. The trails were typical corduroy snotty single track but we made good time. It seemed like a long test and at some point the orange arrows turned to orange chevrons . We were on a transfer without checking out! I guess something happened, maybe the check got changed, maybe checkers got lost. Who knows? We came to a split for pros and asked the guy directing us if we were still getting timed....he didn't know. We just kept following chevrons and ended up at gas with 45km behind us, 35 km ahead of us and 30 minutes to spare. We gassed our bikes, hung out, chatted, tried to figure out the confusion with the test but realized everyone missed it so we were ok. I didn't even eat anything out of my goodie bag tied to my gas can because I still felt fresh (MISTAKE). I mentioned to Rob that we only had two tests left, an 8km and the 4 km mx track. We figured it would be a piece of cake (BIGGEST MISTAKE OF ALL!!!! NEVER underestimate the Cord!)

    Our minute was coming up and we lined up. Rob asked the checker if it was a timed section and was told yes. Flip cards went to 01 and we were off. We raced down the fire road following the orange chevrons.WTF? I had an idea this wasn't a transit and backed off a bit. Rob didn't. I turned of the road and into a trail only to find Rob hung up on a nasty roots uphill. As I passed him on the right (the easy line) I hear him screaming "this had better not be a f#€¥ong transit section. :lol:
    Upon arrival at the next 8km test section we were STILL on our minute and had a few minutes to relax. Ken Hoverman was working the check and said "save your energy, the trail is long and hard". This sent up an immediate red flag as I mulled over the fact that a guy who had ridden these trails all his life was saying it was hard. The other fact was that I had NEVER been told on any check, on any enduro that a section was hard. If anything checkers had always downplayed the difficuly and even the length of the trail!

    Flip cards turned 01 and we were off into 8 km of hell. The trail was muddy and slippery and our progress was not fast. We made a big downhill and as I was going down, I could see the trail down the way where it went up. I saw a tree half way up the hill and two guys standing there to help riders. I couldn't tell you how steep or high it was but I had never attempted anything like this before. To me it seemed more like a canyon wall. Rob hit it, made it up to the helpers and they helped haul him up. I was next. I twisted the throttle, lined up and washed out the front wheel before I even got to the bottom on the hill. I'm sure the volunteers had a good chuckle but, I'm sure they also knew they were going to use a little more energy to get me up the hill :lol: . As I backed up my bike to get a second run at the hill another rider passed me, hit the hill and was helped up. I lined up, hit the hill and made it up to the guys. They pulled me up, I did what I could. Said thanks and went on my way. The trail was like riding on grease with hills that wore me out pushing and pulling the bike. I was paddling, walking beside and riding the bike through the thick goo while all this time my pants were picking up more and more mud, becoming heavier and heavier and adding tommy exhaustion. At about 5km in on the trail according to the gps I was exhausted. My pants were being pulled down by the weight of the mud and water. The mud had caked up on the Velcro that ran vertically on the back of the legs rendering the Velcro useless. Now the flapping bottom of the pants was getting caught in my chain, sometimes making it impossible to put down my left foot. I pulled off the trail. Took off my pack and tekvest and sat down on a log to rest. While sitting I cleaned the mud off the pants as best I could, got the Velcro attached again, had an energy gel and gave myself a 15 minute rest. At this point I realized houring out was a definite possibility. What I didnt realize was that Rob, ahead of me had completely burned through his rear pads and had no rear brake. He was crashing on every downhill. Sometimes sliding down the hills beside his bike. He was wondering where I was as I should have been catching him by hat time.
    I got moving again. But now I had been passed by a lot of bike and the trail was even worse, my pant became anchors and it was difficult to lift my feet onto the pegs, the Velcro let go again, my pants caught in the chain numerous time. On top of this breathing was difficult due to the cold. I WAS DONE. I started looking for a bail. I made it up a tight rooty uphill and pulled off the trail. I could see a road, I debated whether or not I could get the bike out to the road. I also knew there was maybe 700 metres of trail left. What to do. My pants were the problem (or so I figured). Maybe I was delirious with fever, had taken too much cold meds, or was just in survival mode. But I was pissed and the pants were coming off! I can ride out in my underwear! I took off my boots, dumped out the water, pulled off my shin pads and pulled off my pants. Actually when I undid them they hit the ground like a sack of wet cement. I pulled on my boots, tucked in my shin guards rolled the pants up and put them in my knapsack. A rider or two passed me. For some reason they didn't stop to ask if I was ok. In fact I think they might have sped up at the site they saw. Maybe I had a brief moment of sanity or my fever broke right then, but I looked down at myself. My bare legs, shin pads and boots and said to myself " YOU are a retard! Do you really want to be knowN as the guy who rode out of check 12 in his underwear?" I stopped, pulled off my boots and put the 40 lb. trousers back on. Now what? I rummaged through my backpack and found my large tie wraps I carry in case I get a flat tire. I pulled the bottom of the pant up as high as I could and tie wrapped them around my thighs. Now I had shorts and dignity!. On the bike and away. I continued a few hundred metres where I was greeted by the site of the road. I could bail or turn left down into a quagmire. I took the bail and joined the road. When I went by the out check the flip cards read 89. I had spent almost an hour and a half in that section.

    The rest of the transit was tough. All the thick goo, mud holes and water that had been churned up by all the bikes. It was some of the toughest riding of the day. I made it out to the mx track and they sent me home by the road as they had closed up the check. The ride back was cold ... I was riding in shorts.

    When I got back I got my gear off and headed to the warm water in the bathroom as I was frozen and covered in mud. When I turned around to leave, there was a guy behind me and he said " hey, weren't you the guy in the bush with no pants" .... Yup, that was me.

    Sooooooo. My lessons I learned:

    1. Ride the Cord healthy
    2. Line 1 is ok. Just be prepared to move over
    3. Never underestimate the Cord
    4. Over the boot klim pants are great for dual sport but suck for enduros
    5. Never underestimate the Cord
    6. Don't change gear on race day
    7. Keep your pants on! Even in the bush, someone is bound to see you!

    Well, that's it. My cold has turned into a raging sinus infection. I'm not even going to proof read it. See you at the Great Pine ( I'll be the guy in the old tattered mx pants tucked in my boots!)
  2. Neil Edmunds

    Neil Edmunds ODSC Executive

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  3. Shawn Hall

    Shawn Hall Ride Organizer

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  4. Randy_K

    Randy_K Limited User

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    :eat
  5. Mr. C

    Mr. C Limited User

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    Come on, Chef...we need the rest (especially the no pants part)!!! :lol:
  6. Chef

    Chef ODSC Executive

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    There ya go! I think Rob may have a photo to add. I can't seem to get it to work.
  7. Mr. C

    Mr. C Limited User

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    I had a pretty good laugh thinking of you popping out of the trail in your underwear! Classic!
  8. Ontario GS

    Ontario GS ODSC Executive

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    Awesome Chef
  9. bkowal

    bkowal Limited User

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    Good read!

    I guess it didn't matter which minute you went in on, it was hell in there.

    I also stood at the bottom of that gully, thinking it was impossible to get up. It takes a bit of nerve to blast up a hill KNOWING you are going to crash at some point because unless you have wings, there is no way to get to the top.

    Pants or no pants, you do what you have to do to get out.
  10. Neil Edmunds

    Neil Edmunds ODSC Executive

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    Hilarious!
  11. WudzRydr

    WudzRydr Ride Organizer

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    Here's the pic of Chef in his fancy pants. :lol:

    [​IMG]

    Good story Kevin!
  12. Chef

    Chef ODSC Executive

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    Oh yeah, I'm missing a knee pad too. It came off and I couldnt get the Velcro to stick. It was left in the bush!

    Congrats to Wudzrydr !!! Cord results are now showing he won the Novive B ... Not the second he was scored originally =D> =D> =D>
  13. Laird

    Laird Ride Organizer

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    OMG Kevin, that's hilarious. I sprayed the screen a bit with coffee! That must have been quite a sight. I'm tired just reading it. Great write up and a worthy effort! I can't begin to imagine how tough that must have been.

    And congrats WudzRydr!
  14. binsel

    binsel Limited User

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    Kevin,
    You look like you're hit by a truck, then wrestled a bear in mud, rode your bike, then wrestled another bear, and hit by another truck, and still have "I survived" smile =D>
  15. brucedwilson

    brucedwilson ODSC Executive

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    That shot should go on the frontpage of the website!!

    Kev, you never fail to impress.

    Bruce