|D21 part 1|
The first control was easy, but it was controls 2 and 3 that caused all my problems. I realised later I have never encountered this style of terrain before - notably that in the area of 2 and 3. The terrain is moderately hilly, and the mess of contours make little sense while biking (or stood still) as the terrain is formed of 20-30m high hills with depressions between. The paths also, follow no structure here. They are neither solely on ridges or in valleys, but instead form a random unpredictable pattern in the terrain.
|D21 part 2 (1)|
To 3 again, I stuck with the route I knew, getting a little stuck in sand on the sharp corners, and lost another 40 seconds. Less than before, but the general downhill nature of the early paths helped a little.
|D21 part 2 (2)|
By this point I was 3 minutes behind, but naturally didn't know this. I saw Cecilia on my way to no.7 and figured she had gained a couple of minutes on me.
However, to 8, 9 and 10 I found I understood things a bit more, and started to mingle in the other competitors split times. I'm not sure why I suddenly changed mentally here, but I started to know which would be the better choices. Rather than guessing and not succeeding.
I spent time thinking about the next leg, and chose to stay on the flat. Longer than the north route, but safer navigation and a chance to pedal.
Using the easier navigation on this leg I could think more about the next one. At first I felt going over the medium path to the south was better, but on closer inspection saw the contours and small hill tops. Instead I chose to take a risk and take the slow track to the north. In fact this turned out to be rather fast, the sand was harder at the edges where cars have driven and soft in the middle. Crossing the middle was treacherous, but in the end I was much faster than my other competitors on this leg.
|Race face (Jonas Bierson)|
|SM Middle Medal winners (Sven Ake Nordenmark)|