Race no. 2 is in the Books! Today's race was at Theodore Wirth park/golf course which is what I considered my "home turf" for cross country skiing races back in high school. So this was a kind of return!
The course it self was basically not a cross course, it was a mountain bike trail with stuff in the way! No chance for recovery, lots of narrow single track through the woods, and the only places to pass were on a few open spots where you could sprint ahead. I started back quite a bit in the pack and because the course was so narrow crawled along for about 1/2 a lap before I could stretch my legs out.
There were lots of crashes today. I was in one minor one when a guy went down right in front of me and I rode into him, but I was able to run and remount while only losing a single spot. I also got my fingers into some other guys spokes at a very narrow barrier. He came up behind me and tried to pass on the narrow part (jerk), and it turned into a tangle. Then there were three other crashes in front of me that were to my advantage and I picked up spots from them. None of these crashes were serious, just low speed pileups due to the massive number of people winding around! I don't know the exact number of people in my race, but it was between 100-150. There were 240 racers total in all three races.
Unfortunately, due to all those people the officials didn't have results ready before we left, so I will have to wait until they are posted online. I think I did better than last time but who knows!
This atmosphere at this race was really great. RT Rybak showed up apparently, there was free beer provided by Rock Bottom Brewery of Minneapolis, and there were crazies in the woods who were shooting off fire-crackers to modivate racers (it works!).