Yesterday I saw the Pacific Ocean for the first time. I was in a true West Coast city for the first time (San Francisco). I saw Chicago and Lake Michigan for the first time. Friday, I competed in my first ever National Championship (Collegiate Mtn Bike). It may have been my first race in which I got pulled out by an Official. Thursday I stood at the edge of Lake Tahoe for the first time. Late Wednesday night I landed in Reno, Nevada, making it my first time West of the Rockies.
All in all, this past long weekend has been a flurry of new experiences. I traveled with three others to represent Penn State at the National mountain bike championship in Truckee, California. I only raced the XC race on Friday. It was rather disappointing to be whistled off the course after completing only two of the four 7.5 mile laps. The officials did this to about half the racers to prevent us from being lapped. Having flown across the country to race this event, I thought that it was absurd that I wasn't able to continue on. It is even more upsetting to see the results posted incorrectly. I'm placed behind riders that only completed one lap and who were physically behind me on most of that first lap. It is disheartening to be an entry level USA Cycling Official myself and see people with more experience than me not only cheat racers like me out of being able to finish a once in a lifetime race, but also botch the results, which should've been easier to calculate by pulling people. I think I'm going to take a lengthy break from any USAC events. This race has left me bitter.