Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Florida Trip - Recap

Day 3 - The Family Reunion

So what called us to Florida in the middle of the coldest Ohio winter I can ever remember - the Brown Family Reunion. I can finally put a face to all the names Connie kept tossing out. This is Connie's Mom's Sister's Husband's side of the Family. I must say, what a cool family. I had a great time. It was a also a time of firsts...Landon & I went on a horse ride, my first. We rode a 4 wheeler which I believe was my first, Connie and I won the egg toss (see the video). And holy shit...did I eat. Uncle Mike is a master griller and smoker! The hard effort in preparing the food was appreciated by all. Smoked pulled pork, smoked beans (my favorite), orange poppy seed marinated shrimp wrapped in Bacon and yep...grilled to smokin perfection, the steak was mighty tasty also. I shit you not...I gained some good poundage because I weighed in 5 pounds more, after the race... when I got home - I could not say no to all that food. It was also alot of fun to watch all the kids, Aunt Shirley hooked em up with a fun outdoor experience and a ton of toys to play with. It seemed as if eveyone that came had little ones attached, Landon was running around and having a hoot and playing with everyone!

Day 4 - Razorback Pre-ride
Razorback was an hour away from Deland and only open on the weekends, so I took off Sunday afternoon after everyone left the family reunion and meet Ken and Ray in Reddick Florida. whhhoooo neelly...I did not expect this kind of trail in Florida. I love this stuff, tight, technical, short climbs, twisty, curvy high speed big ring sections and rocks! It took me a lap to find a touch of rhytmn with a new bike and such a long time away from the single track. We did 3 laps before the place closed...I found my happy place...riding excellent single track in February in shorts when its negative 20 degrees in back in Ohio...yep...I was indeed in a happy place!

Day 5-6 - BodyWorks, Disney and Family
Went for an easy recovery ride in the am then it was off to the BodyWorks Exhibit in Orlando. We missed the exhibit when it was in Cleveland. This was actually a very cool thing to see and I learned alot. Connie was absolutely amazed and showed me everything she could. You would think this to be a "gross" exhibit but it was the opposite, once inside you found yourself examining the bodies and you were able to see what only doctors have been priveldged. Connie explained and showed me the muscle groups that had been bothering me, and other injuries that her athletes had encountered.
After the exhibit we headed south to Sebring and visited my Grandparents. Landon helped grandpa pick some fresh grapefruit and oranges and we had a good time relaxing and spending time with them. The next morning it was off to Disney World. Landon had a blast. We basically walked onto every ride and experienced the whole park. Capped it off with the fireworks and then back to Deland. I woke up the next morning at 5:00am and drove off to Ocala to meet Ken and Ray at Santos. Holy shit...another unbelievable place to ride. We rode around until we hit the quarry and the Red Bull Rampage stuff...crazy 20 foot drops and jumps. Then we went off to the landbridge. An actual trail over I-75, one of Florida busiest highways. I can't not believe they allocated money for this, it connected two major sections of trail. You could ride here for days and never ride the same trail. The other amazing thing was a sign I saw...It said something about Horses not allowed on the trail and they would be fined if caught! Its the opposite in Ohio! Just the other week one of my riding buds got caught, fined and bike impounded for riding in our national trails where horses are allowed but not bikes...wtf! Anyway, after this I headed back to Deland, dropped Connie and Landon off at the Airport and went to Ken's to rest up for the race. He had a great meal prepared the night before the race. Meet Brett and Ernesto and we prerode the course on Friday and then Saturday was the race...see below.

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