Friday, October 3, 2008

Barefoot up Genting

So Wednesday was the BIG day, the assault up to Genting. S.Sam will be uploading his take on the day very soon, but here is my version to get started. Pictures on the way Lahhhh.
Twelve riders ending up doing the TTH challenge, rather a few dropped out last minute?! The riders brave enough were: S.Sam, Simon, Randy, Terry, Lim, Ngae, KK Martin, Meng, Dave, Chris, R H Bee and Moi. Everyone did a fan-BLOODY-tastic job. We all arrived at the first pit stop just past Ulu Yam in good time and not too far apart. A quick refuel and then it was onto Gohtong Jaya.
Never have I sat in the saddle so long. I am used to getting out and attacking hills but under the advice from Terry stayed sitting down. It was murder in the beginning but did get slightly easier, not the hills but just the sitting down bit. “Can I stand up here?” I asked on numerous occasions. Terry just kept shaking his head and saying NO. So for once in my life I behaved myself put the ego away and sat down and shut up. The shutting up part was easy actually since my lungs were working hard enough just to let me breathe let alone speak or God forbid swear as I am on occasion prone to doing!
I got to Gohtong Jaya with Terry (thanks for the company) and felt pretty good. My knee that has been plaguing me since last Saturdays ride was not happy with the resistance it was up against, but everything else was kinda working. I kept the pit stop short, already soaking wet I was starting to get extremely cold. Cramp had already creeped in waaay back before Ulu Yam so I was concerned about keeping the Goosebumps and cramp at bay. (Did I just say I felt pretty good? Hmmmn, now I remember, Carmen said I looked good. Nothing about feeling good!)
The last section was the worst. A nasty 8-9k climb all the way up to the top. I set off and was quickly dropped by Randy and Terry. Plodding on, trying not to come to a standstill, I kept telling myself just make it to the next corner, and then the next and the next. That was my plan and it was kind of working. Until the “nasty” corner. With 3-4k to go there is a hairpin turn on a gradient that could be as much as 15% or more. In the car this had worried me and now as I approached it I realised I had no bloody clue what to do. I missed the part where the others had been advised to “go wide”, I usually pay attention but for some reason my ears did not pick up this bit of V V V important advice. So there I am trying to take the corner as normal up the tightest gradient, conscious of the stream of traffic out in the road that I would have had to cross into to go wide. Sit down, Stand up, Sit down Stand up. I had no bloody clue what and how to take the corner. NOVICE, PRATT, IDIOT, ANNOYED, NEWBIE!!! The bike came to a standstill, my knee stopped working, so I unclipped knowing the worst was going to happen. I put my foot down and with cleats on, on a steep incline I could not grip and slid and then promptly fell. I got to my feet to see a car pull up stop a bit and then laugh! No utterance of are you ok. I would have loved to give them a piece of my mind but was too busy trying to stop the shakes and stand upright without falling further back down the hill. I guess it was rather comical thinking back now.
Anyway. What to do? I took my bike shoes off and starting pushing Scott up the hill. Do I get back on or not? I was having a mental battle with myself. The leg I fell on hurt but was fine but my Knee excuse the French was really well and truly _____ed!!! So I carried on walking for a bit and then Carmen in the support car passed. I stuck my thumb up and said I was fine. After that I saw a sign for 3.5k. Well my knee hurt when riding but I knew I could run without pain and so THAT is what I did. Barefoot all the way, with stinky shoes in my left hand, bike on the right hand I started a slow jog of baby steps. Chris passed by a while later. “You go girl” I yelled! Amazing job Chris, FANTASTIC. Then R H Bee, “Good job Bee great stuff”, and then Meng. “Well done Meng keep going” I yelled. I have never run barefoot before and only ran and pushed a bike in transition so it was a new experience. Steam coming off me, spittle and snot flying, yes I said SNOT, I was a mess but I was going to get to the top in some sort of style, okay so there was absolutely nothing stylish about my accent but basically I was not going to walk!
Thank you Ivie for probably taking the worst ever picture anyone is EVER going to see of me in action. I am waiting for her to forward the picture. When she saw what I was doing she drove up to the next nasty incline, pulled over and took pot shots of me with her Nikon as a tried to run on the balls of my sore feet up a particularly nasty incline.
Everyone got to the top. Everyone did amazingly well, I cannot stress that enough. This just goes to show how strong the grit, determination and gumption of TTH has got. We disrobed and changed into dry clothes in the KK Martin Wan and then descended via cars back down to Gohtong Jaya for a well earned lunch and bevies.
Once again well done everyone. And thank you Carmen and Ivie for the fantastic support even if you were late to the first Pit stop! (Dilly dallying over breakfast was we??). And BIG thanks to Sergeant Sam for thinking up and arranging the whole day. GREAT STUFF
As for me, I have a marathon to tackle next week and hope my knee will let me perform well-ish. As for the nasty corner, I will be doing that again VERY soon.

1 comment:

Squirrel said...