I figured it would climb better and handle the mud a little better. I had a good start and filed into the woods just ahead of T. Brown. 1/4 of the way into the lap the lead group of 5 was set with Chris P. dangling on and off.
The 9.9 was a good choice in the end but a flat tire derailed my efforts in the middle of the 3rd lap. I was starting to feel the pain and Jesse was already out of sight when it happened. The tire change was smooth except for the nut on the tubeless valve core. The thing was impossible to get off in the mud. Soon I was chasing solo and caught Jesrin with 1 lap to go. I ran out of juice and finished 9th on the day.
No racing on Sunday which bummed me out after staying in Wautoma Super 8 Saturday night. It seemed that everyone was bailing on day 2 and I might have had a shot at the top 5 in the GC and was looking forward to some redemption from the flat. The race was cancelled though and might be rescheduled at a later date.
At least I got to go home and hang out with Andrea who had just arrived home from a week long back pack trip in Cali.