Got the guts?

Hannah - Portland, Oregon
Entered on May 3, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

I believe that the winner’s are not always the people who get first place, the winner’s are the one’s who participate in the race. I believe this to be true, especially after I finished my first season of cyclocross. Cyclocross is bicycle racing that is a mixture of road racing and mountain biking.The races take place on a variety of surfaces, including pavement, gravel, grass, and mud, lots of mud! It is usually rainy because cyclocross season is in the Fall. You have to jump over barriers with your bike and there are lots of hills and obstacles to over come. I first got interested in cyclocross this past year after watching my dad race . I went to this years awards ceremony last night. I found out that I got 4th over all for the season in the junior women catagory. This was my first year, so I was very proud. On one of the races I felt like quitting. It was so muddy, rainy, cold and miserable! I had personal difficulties with the mud. I was running through puddles that were almost up to my knees, and I could barely walk. But I did not give up. I just kept riding and urging myself on. I finished the race. I was very cold and miserable afterward, but I felt like I had succeeded. And I did. I believe that racing helps me in other aspects of my life. For example, I am learning Chinese in 7th grade. In the beginning of the year I found the class to be really hard and frustrating. I was about to quit when I realized that I did not need to. I stuck with it and I am sure I will finish this race also. What I have learned from this, I am sure will help me through my life. I believe that you learn these life lessons when you are in your youth so that when you are an adult you will be able to draw upon these experiences. Steve Prefontaine, the famous runner, said, “ A lot of people run a race to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts.” I believe that winning the race is not important. Having the guts to try is.