Hey - I used to race in the desert and there was this dog who also raced. He had a rug on the gas tank was really good at riding at speed. The dogs name was Kookie and I only got to race against him a couple of times because he usually raced in California and I raced in Nevada. The one time I really recall was when his owner John and Kookie ventured up to our turf to race. The race, a 135 Mile Old Style Grand Prix (5 loops) in and around the town of Caliente, Nevada. The race started at a park in the middle of town, wound down a couple streets, then dropped into the creek, south out of town, then up in the hills, and 27 miles later came back into town from the north, jumping into the creek channel for about half mile, then a sharp left turn across the creek and up a very, very steep hill back to the pavement and the park (which served as the pits). The first time I got to the hill it was a cluster flop with bikes all over the place and it seems it took forever (Maybe 4 or 5 minutes) to clear out enough to get out of the creek ditch. Not a real challenge if the weren’t bikes and bodies in the way. I’m remembering that bottleneck as I approach the town at the end of my second loop.
The course goes through a big culvert, drops into the creek and winds downstream. There is a single track trail between the creek and the trees and vegetation. I’m staying far enough behind the bike in front of me to avoid falling victim to flying mud, water spray, and beaver ponds. Here comes a bike trying to pass me. It is John. I want some distance between me and the bike ahead, John wants to be there. He passes me in the stream sending up a large spray of water and that dang dog BARKS at me as they pass.
We soon get to the steep hill and John is pushing on the bike ahead of him, they both try the hill at the same time, the lead bike falters at the top, John loses momentum, the muddy hill is too steep to stop on. When John’s bike stops going forward, Kookie bails off the bike, scampers to the top of the hill, and watches John slide backwards into the creek, I had waited for them to clear the hill, and while John was standing in a foot of water, trying to restart his bike, I zipped by, topped the hill and continued on!
I just wish I had had the presence of mind to bark back a Kookie when I topped the hill. I understood then why Kookie (who was still dry) was an Expert and John (Who was soaking wet) was an Amateur.
If you take Morgan riding, make sure she has a comfortable place for her feet!