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Secret Squirrel MTB Race

by Anders Larson • May 01, 2023

Secret Squirrel Race
Taunton, MA 4/29/23

Well, that one hurt. First mountain bike race of the season is in the bag. This one was down in the tropics of Massachusetts - temps were in the 50’s, plants were blooming, and the ground was totally dry. Got to spend the night at my teammate Matt Hersey’s house up in Medford, so the morning drive was under an hour.

Massasoit State Park doesn’t have any huge hills where the race was held, but there are plenty of short, punchy climbs. It does have good dirt, lots of twisty singletrack, and a lot of roots. I think the promoters did a great job putting together an interesting and challenging race course. The age groups were pretty big - I was in the 45+ expert class. Being 59 puts me at a bit of a disadvantage with these large fields.

My race was fairly uneventful. I had a little mishap in the charge for the singletrack and was boxed into the trees. I’m sure I aggravated several riders behind me with my near stop. Once that was out of the way it was just the usual grind. My Kona Hei Hei CR was great - rock solid handling and the right amount of forgiving over the rough stuff. In the past I felt like I’d be passing people through the race with people passing me once in a while. This race was different as I pretty much stayed in my position and others passed me. Quite a few of those were in the second wave of 19 to 44 aged riders.

I ended up in 26th place out of 52 starters. My time was 1:45, and the winner came in at 1:32. While it wasn’t the result I was after, I looked into the data and no one older than me beat me (I’m 59). I did a quick average of those that did, and the average age is 50. So what does this mean? Not much really, because the race is the race, and age groups are the competition. A few races this summer have older people categories, and I’m hoping I’ll get better results in those. Until then, it’s more training and prepping for the next race - which might be next weekend in Westwood, MA.

Pisgah MTB Stage Race
Final De Barro