Somehow I left Texas without doing one of their famous mountain bike races. It's taken me this long to get into another race. I did this same race back in 2001, But it has changed quite a bit, maybe 10x the number of people for a start. I heard 35000 people was the estimate. Just getting there and registered, and to the start line on time was probably more intense than the actual race ;) They say it's the biggest bike event worldwide.
I entered the same cat3 class but in the 40-42 age range, I think I was 27 yrs last time! I had a pretty good race, but spent a fair amount of time waiting to pass. Considering the number of racers on course all going different speeds it wasn't so bad. The course was a little under 20 miles and 2700ft elevation gain. It is a pretty cool feeling to start and finish on the famous Laguna Seca raceway.
11th in the end (in my age group) I was pretty happy with my time. Maybe again in 14 years ?