This weekend was the 6th annual Monkey Knife Fight bike race. What’s a Monkey Knife Fight bike race you might ask? It’s a bike race through the rolling hills and back roads of Eastern PA, and when I say back roads, I mean loose, rocky, dusty, roads.
Here’s a link to the course: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/291654823
Last year I attended the Monkey Knife Fight for the first time and only had stories to go one as to what to expect. Let me explain how this event works. There are 7 gravel road climbs and the first ten riders to the top of each climb get scored points. Thinking back to last year’s event I wasn’t sure if I wanted to ride my cyclocross or road bike. I ended up using my road bike which turned out to be the right decision. The riding between the climbing stages was a variety of speeds depending on who was out at the front, which kept things interesting. There was not one climbing stage that didn’t have riders doing all they could just to keep traction. It was a very fine line between traction and slipping out on the slippery gravel. This is where I think my mountain biking background was an advantage. When you climb steep technical trails you need to know where and how to move your weight around to constantly keep traction. The course had a pit stop so riders could refuel, use restrooms, and talk about their ride. It was fun listening to people share their stories and to hear the excitement and passion in their voices.
I had learned a lot from doing the event last year and knew to pace myself better this time. My results for the seven stages were 2nd, 1st, 1st, 1st , 1st , 1st, and 3rd giving me the overall win for the day. I was very excited and pleased with all my effort and hard work. Neither my bike nor my legs had let me down. Now it was time for some food, drinks, and laughter with friends.