Saturday's short track went fine. As far as I can tell, it all played out very much like last year's race. I think I kept the time gap up to the Cat 1 girls a few seconds smaller than last year, but nothing big. I did not win the Cat 2 state championship this time, because the girl that won was on a tear and lapped or at least got really close to lapping all of the Cat 1 and 2 women, except for Cat 1 winner. There was one other Cat 2 girl there, and while I finished ahead of her, she had some sort of issue that caused her to leave the course for a bit, which makes it's hard to determine how we would have finished in a fair competition.
Last year, the short track race was kind of the highlight of my season, because I was suddenly able to stay within 1-2 minutes of Cat 1 girls who usually beat me by 15-20 minutes in XC races. Of course, a shorter race means a shorter margin of victory/defeat, but it was still a pretty big shift. This year was not as exciting, because I was expecting small gaps and was actually a bit disappointed that they weren't smaller. The good news is that I think this year I think figured out the reason for the smaller gap: This particular short track course doesn't necessarily play to my strengths, but it definitely minimizes a major weakness that I hadn't really figured out until last night. Now that I know exactly what I need to work on, perhaps I can start getting some better XC and 'cross results before 2010 ends.
Unfortunately, today was not a day to chalk up good XC results. Everything I could say from this point on is basically an excuse, so I will keep it short. I got to the race feeling scared and generally not right about the course, my bike, the competition, or pretty much anything. The first 10 minutes went badly, mostly because I reverted bad into my old reactionary mode, rather than riding my own race as I have been trying to focus on this year. I let myself slip into "I suck" mode, and ended up dropping out.