Leonie and I headed to Switzerland on Saturday for the Alpenchallenge Lenzerheide on Sunday. The weather was pretty nice on Saturday. We attempted to go rock climbing but completely failed to find the climbing area so gave up and lazed instead.
Sunday was much less friendly. The race started at 6 am under overcast sky. We rolled the few km down from our campsite to the start line. The race started neutralised and we descended for perhaps 15 km at a crawl. Often the neutralised sections are much too quick but this was definitely the opposite.
It wasn’t really clear when the race started but at some point we started climbing towards the Albula Pass. Around the same time it started to rain which was to be the theme for most of the rest of the race. I dragged my slow fat body up the hill. Instead of starting at the back of the race like in the Arlberg Giro I had started in the A group this time.
The guys in front of me rode away and I edged away from the guys behind me until I was riding alone in the mist and drizzle. Every now and then I would hear a clap of thunder. I reached the pass and pulled on my jacket before ascending. Strangely as I looked behind me I saw that it had briefly cleared and there was blue sky above the pass.
The blue sky hung around for a bit in the valley. I had a good group and worked near the front with a few others to keep the speed up. We headed back towards dark clouds and starting climbing the Julier Pass. My legs started to die a bit and I lost some of the front of the group.
The weather descending from Julier Pass was awful. Heavy rain, cold, water coming from all directions. I descended mostly with one other guy taking turns at pulling. The other guys in the group had been riding more slowly and we were cranking.
The rain cleared a little later on and the descent finished and we were climbing again. The guy I had been riding with had better legs and rode off and I ascended by myself. Another final descent and then a reasonably long ascent up to the finish line.
Leonie finished not so long after me and after pasta we rode back to our camp site in the rain.
Alpenchallenge Lenzerheide 2017 Time: 4:57:26.2 Dst: 116km/2800m Place Category: 50/206 Overall Men: 94/539