“If you’re going to walk out, I think you need to go that way, “ said the hippy race volunteer, pointing to the right.
“Really?” asked Tim, “Are you sure you have the map turned the right way?”
“Oh huh. Right,” she spins the map around,” Yeah, I guess you go that way,” pointing to the left.
Needless to say some of did not have the best race Sunday. Germ took some unscheduled stops on some sandy turns (although still managed to beat me by two minutes) and Tim managed to get a flat at the perfect spot on the trail–as far as you can get from the start or the finish. Before the race we’d checked in with them and finding out Tim only had a pump with which to change a flat we said, hey dude, take this CO2 canister, if something does go wrong, you’ll be able to get back in the race faster. Or, maybe not.
As somebody said we took away the device that Tim was fully familiar with (a small pump) and gave him a new fangled thing that neither he, nor apparently anybody on the trail knew how to use, and thus was unable to inflate the tube once he got it changed. There’s a usability study there. Needless to say chaos ensued, Tim actually ended up doing a kind of triathlon where he rode seven miles, reversed and walked back up the trail another three (for the second event), and finished up with a creative-explicative event (that replaced the normal swimming part of the tri – he excelled in it, apparently).
In the end, we all lived. I also have to say, despite their reputation for building excessively windy trails, Austin Ridge Riders did a heluva job putting this thing together, the first race to happen in a Travis County park in many a year–hopefully the first of many.