Recon Extravaganza! This weekend brings the recon to a close, (hopefully!), and then it will be on to the finer details of cue sheets and mileage crunching for time cut offs. I'll be on the road today with d.p. doing a ton of gravel travel.
Thoughts On The Course So Far: I am aware that the T.I.V6 roster is about as stacked as it ever has been with some stout riders. Not since T.I.V1 has a roster this potent been gathered, (asuming everyone shows up). I also know that these guys haven't been laying low and taking things easy. (That's right, I hear about you guys!) Mileage totals have been getting piled up, tactics have been refined, and plans made for alliances to dominate and demoralize the other competitors. The "carrot" of the sub-24 hour Trans Iowa finish is dangling out there too, and many would like to attach their name to "first" on that list.
But regardless of all of these things, I will make public a comment I made to a good friend just this past week: "I will be super surprised if anyone can tame this course in less than 24 hours." So, there ya go. I think it would be a near miracle for any rider to pull it off.
I have many reasons as to why this is, not least of which is the fact that I know most of the course. But let's think this through a minute:
Last year the course was just over 320 miles. The weather was near perfection. The gravel conditions were above avaerage. The B Roads were nearly a non-factor. Only a navigational error stopped three guys from nipping the 24 hour barrier. Will all those things that went right go right this year? I do not believe they will.
There is more to it than this, but suffice it to say, the sub-24 hour Trans Iowa is going to be really, really hard to accomplish. Everything would have to go 100% perfectly for it to happen.
Pre-Race Meat-Up: If you are reading this, and have not responded, or even seen the e-mail that I sent out, here it is in its entirety. Please skip over this if you've seen this to the end: Hello All!
I am writing to you all who are listed on the Trans Iowa V6 Roster
If this has reached you in error, I apologize. If you are on the roster, but will be unable to attend the April 23rd Pre-Race Meat-Up at The Grinnell Steakhouse, please indicate that *you will not be racing in Trans Iowa* by e-mailing me back a reply saying that. If you plan on attending, and thus racing in T.I.V6, read on............
If you will be at the meeting, *which is mandatory to race in T.I.V6*, you must reply to this e-mail with the number of people you will be attending the meeting with. Please include yourself in this number. I need a head count for The Grinnell Steakhouse and for the Grinnell Chamber of Commerce who will be giving each racer a pair of Dining Dollars gift certificates worth $10.00 each which can be redeemed at The Grinnell Steakhouse, or at any Chamber member resturaunt in Grinnell Iowa. (Yes- this means your support people could use the Dining Dollars on Saturday or Sunday)
You will be able to pick up a Welcome Bag with the Dining Dollars and other promotional materials at The Comfort Inn And Suites Grinnell Iowa upon your arrival on Friday.
So, to recap: I need to know if you are coming to the Pre-Race Meat-Up and if anyone else will be attending with you. So, if you are racing, and you are bringing a person to the meeting with you, indicate "2" in your reply.
If you will be the only person there, indicate "1" in your reply. For details on the Pre-Race Meat-Up go to the T.I.V6 site
If you have not seen this or replied to this, I need to know by the 17th what your answer is to give the resturaunt a head count. Please respond here if you need to.
Look for a recon report and course conditions update coming next week. Weather updates will also be on the way. It's getting close! T.I.V6 is nearly here!