2006 Keskinada Report #2 - The Fall Guy in Gino's Story!
By: Mark Campbell (2006/02/20)
Firstly I will offer my apologies to Gino Ainsley, as I was the one with Gino's group who fell down on the bottom of burma when I missed a pole plant.
I had reglued one of my baskets before the race, but obviously not at the proper angle and was repeatedly missing left hand pole plants on the uphills. I was second in line in the group starting up burma, and whiffed badly and fell forward, only to look up and see my carbon pole precariously between Dasha's boots. Luckily she waited long enough for me to pull it back, and she took off after a few explatives. my apologies to dasha if I got her with my pole tip and for slowing her down.
I did stand aside to let the rest of the group go so i didn't cause more problems and tried as best i could to keep my wrist twisted to get the pole angle right. Dasha and one of the other skiers in the group bridged up to the one guy ahead and we were now a group of 4 losing touch with the 3 ahead fast. I felt good once we reached to top, but the trail was tight and to get by the other featherweight guys would have been tough, especially with the random pole plant misses, so I didn't try to come around until we were coming out to champlain. Gino had gapped the other two skiers and I went around saying I would finally take a pull at the front. Being 200lbs I guess caused me to drop little Gino on the downhill. I caught sight of the group of skiers with Dasha at the top of one of the long parkway climbs and set my sights to catch them. A casual skier going the other way said I was 21st, or did he say 31st - I wasn't sure but wanted to try get in the top 30 for the first time ever at the very least. The last 15k I felt awesome and caught Dasha's group with about 7 or 8 to go and used my gravity advantage on the parkway to pull away. I came in with energy to spare in what turned out to be huge personal best 16th place.
It'll be hard to improve on that fitnesswise given my size, so perhaps I will seek have to seek out a jenny craig sponsorship for next year.