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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Pits are the Pits!

It was pouring on New Year’s day. And I’m not talking about the champagne.

When some in California were busily mopping up the mud in their living rooms brought in from a record breaking storm, my friend Wild Bill and I decided to go check out the “Hangover Harescramble” in Pozo. Afterall, it looked like the rain would let up somewhat.

This annual motorcycle event near San Luis Obispo is a traditional race no respectable moto rider ever wants to miss, no matter how hung over they may be. I certainly was bummed to leave my big orange teddy bear (a KTM 520) in the shed, especially because of the biblical conditions. Riding with little to no traction is one of my all-time favorites.

But my boyfriend, I mean husband, keeps mumbling something about how pregnant women aren’t supposed to be racing motocross at 5 months. He Kryponited my bike for the winter and hid the key.

So, I’d be working the pits for Wild Bill. How could it be any easier than handing him Red Bull and fresh Oakley goggles between laps? That’s the least I can do for a riding buddy. Last year Bill lent me his coveted Fox Talus fork for the Santa Cruz Hell Ride. And during that Hell Ride he worked on my Blur. And, drove me the 800 miles to and from Downieville.

I wore all my winter riding gear to the pits, because it was feeling like the storm wasn’t giving in as much as we thought. In fact, in felt like it’s origin had changed and was coming straight from Alaska or the polar ice caps. But I was going to ride after his race, come high water or frigid higher water. I wasn’t just another “pit girl”. I’d brought my mountain bike. That way I could ride something in the mud to celebrate the first day of the year.

marla streb
Hangover Harescramble in Pozo

Wild Bill had an okay start off the line. His pre-race disclaimer already established itself to be mounting fatigue from riding 5 out of the last 7 days. And besides, he didn’t know the course. So, I didn’t expect a holeshot out of him. But he’s a top-ranked A racer so I expected that he’d pull up in no time.

As excited as I was for Bill’s New Year’s riding experience, I was not very motivated to stand in between puddles and wait for him to come around to shower cheers and claps of enthusiasm. I knew his pick up truck down the way was warm. His two dogs were in there and they must have been putting off some decent thermal, albeit stinky, energy. So, I sat in the truck smelling their dueling dog chow sighs and watching the rain and hail pelt the sunroof. For what seemed like hours.

I confess that I didn’t really help Wild Bill much in his race (and I did sneak a selfish little ride afterwards).

I guess I am just not tough enough to work in the pits.


kevin said...

You not tough enough to work in the pits? And monkey's might fly out of my...oh nevermind.

I must have missed something here and I thought I was up on all things Marla. Five months along are you? Congrats! It took me ten years to get my daughter to hit the trails with me; which we did last week, and it was awesome! She's ready to go again.

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Staff said...

Marla! Congrats! How you think your child will like bikes?

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running42k said...

Good, I thought it was just me that missed her saying that before.

Congrats and hope all goes well.

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