"Tribulus terrestris, aka Goathead thorn, also known as puncture vine, is a deceptively dangerous weed. Goathead thorn is a little low-growing weed, so flat to the ground that you might not even notice it unless you were looking for it. Rather deceptive, because if it weren't for the seeds, you would completely overlook it.
The seed case does look a little like the shape of a goat's head. That is, if the goat's head had big spikes sticking out of it." (Kathryn (Kathy) McKenzie Nichols)
Goatheads have been the "story of our life" here in Albuquerque. Thursday, we (my teammates and I) arrived in Albuquerque for the Roadrunner Classic-a new race for 2010. Friday, we rode our bikes to the race course, pre rode the course, then rode home. Total ride time, 2 hrs. Total time out, 3.5 hrs. The reason? 5 flat tires due to Goatheads.
Saturday-race day. We raced the TT (without any flat tires!), but when two of us finished, we had goatheads stuck in our rear wheels. It's not a bad thing to have them stuck in the wheel, it's a bad thing when they come out of the wheel. When the goathead goes into your tire it acts as a "plug". When you pull the goathead out, all the air comes shooting out of your tire.
I had a great ride and won the TT.
The afternoon of the Roadrunner, was the road race and the goatheads were relentless. 4 flats with no follow cars makes for an interesting race. Halfway into the race, I noticed a goathead in the sidewall of my front tire-just sticking there, going round and round. My wheel was not going flat. For almost an hour I raced with that goathead, knowing full well each time we passed the neutral pit I should stop to get a new wheel. I never did and on the last lap the goathead come out and I had a front flat. I had to stop get a wheel from my teammate (her race was now over), ride up to another teammate (who also had a flat), so she could help me chase back on to the group. I chased and chased, but never made it to the lead group. Race was lost. I (with a lot of help from my team) still managed second overall. Not bad, but not ideal.
Good learning experience.
Now on to Gila.