Thursday, April 22, 2010

"Thursday Night World Championships" - Seward Park 4/22/2010

The biggest and baddest names in Category 3 & 4 WSBA racing showed up for the 6 PM race today. I heard someone in the pack say, "there's something in the air tonight" and he was right - most of us failed at meeting goals the previous week at Walla Walla most likely, and felt a refreshed sense of urgency to get That Win.

The air was cool, a little too much since I was only in shorts and a jersey - left the door in a hurry and didn't bring a jacket or anything - but that thought was soon washed away with the warmth of 170+ beats-per-minute of the heart.

The Race

We got to go clockwise, which I hadn't done since last year - I had a love/hate relationship with this direction - the climb sometimes felt harder going this way, since it's longer but less steep - but I seem to place better this way too. I think it's because we're sprinting on a 4-5% grade at the end - and if you start out the wind-up/sprint behind others, you're in the draft and can build up some nice speed. Tonight was no different.

The race started off pretty quick, the first few laps hurt, a little reminder of the big turnout tonight (50?), and the fact that this isn't the beginner's 4/5's race at 5:30 anymore. (Ok, so we're not the p/1/2/3 7 PM race either.. somewhere in between)

There were four other Recycled Cycles guys in the pack, all Cat 3s - wasn't sure what their plan was but I was mostly just gonna stay out of their way, and try to keep up. After all it's only been about a year since I started racing at all, and they've been doing this for years.

On a prime lap I thought I had a decent position to move up for it, and went to the left around the big group and shot up towards on guy close off the front, but didn't see that there was already a break of three that had a bigger gap up the road (including a team mate I think). Oops. You're not supposed to chase your own team mates, but at least it's just a training race so it's not a big deal.


The group came back together, and 15 laps & 30 minutes later it was time for the final few laps. I had decent position near the front and the pack was speeding up people jostling for the top few positions. I didn't want to be up on the front, and couldn't really get up there in time anyway - was about 15 riders back at the bottom of the hill, and wound up the sprint to shoot up through a few people who had gone early for That Win. I could see the sprint pretty well, and could see three other RCR riders (Mike, Pauh, Adam?) in front of me - four team mates in the top 10, not bad! Ex-RCR rider Randy took the win, he's a strong guy for sure.

In the end I came in for 7th or 8th place - though points for the summer series are only given to the top 6. Still, I'm really happy with that placing in a pretty strong field. Good racing!

Next up: Vance Creek Road Race

Oh yeah, Tim: you were asking about cadence during the race? I'm impressed you can think/talk during a race like that! Anyway feel free to post that question here, I can't remember what it was.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for even entertaining questions during the race. You are right about trying to talk during the race - it will only be small talk from now on. I was curious if the cadence/speed/etc were actual min/max/avg (I checked again - they are). I was also curious if you can isolate these timeframes to get those numbers or do you just reset before the race? Thanks for the shout out. Tim