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Old 06-25-15, 03:08 PM   #1
therhodeo
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Decided to dive in and race finally. Any good advice? UPDATE 7-29

Having gotten a lot of life things out of the way this year I'm finally to a place where I can train regularly and I'm going to enter a local road race. Cat 5 beginner race is 2 laps of a 14mile circuit. Mostly my strategy at this point is to A. hope that its roughly 400 degrees outside and B. hope that there is a south wind.

Jenks Road Race - Bixby, OK

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Old 06-25-15, 03:14 PM   #2
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New to Racing? Here's a tip or two
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Old 06-25-15, 03:17 PM   #3
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Ok sorry I've read most of that stuff. I guess I was asking more specifically for this course or length of race.
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Old 06-25-15, 03:20 PM   #4
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It's going to be pretty difficult for anyone to give you advice without knowing anything about you or how you ride.

So, the only advice I can give you is to not worry too much. Go race; expect to lose but try to win.
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Old 06-25-15, 03:23 PM   #5
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It's going to be pretty difficult for anyone to give you advice without knowing anything about you or how you ride.

So, the only advice I can give you is to not worry too much. Go race; expect to lose but try to win.
Fair enough. Not a sprinter and don't necessarily want to be present for a cat 5 bunch sprint anyway whether I'm off the front or toasted off the back.
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Old 06-25-15, 03:39 PM   #6
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leave your dignity in the car...
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Old 06-25-15, 04:13 PM   #7
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Looks pretty flat with a bump on each lap. Be mindful of crosswind situations, especially where you go around a corner and it switches from cross to tail or vice versa.
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Old 06-25-15, 04:27 PM   #8
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Just be prepared to suffer, then suffer some more.

And if you get dropped (some do, some don't), don't be afraid to try again.
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Old 06-25-15, 05:04 PM   #9
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having everything packed the night before, get there earlier than you think you need to be there, six pins on the number at least (i use seven), dont let your front wheel touch the back wheel of the guy in front of you, have fun.
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Old 06-25-15, 05:14 PM   #10
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Bring a roll of toilet paper, in case they run out in the Porta Potty. (Seriously, I keep a roll in my trunk for this reason.)
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Old 06-25-15, 05:22 PM   #11
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Remember jumping into cat racing isn't like dusting crops.
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Old 06-25-15, 06:59 PM   #12
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whatever you do, stay on target
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Old 06-25-15, 07:24 PM   #13
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In all seriousness, over reaction to things going wrong is probably a bigger problem than things going wrong, most of.the time.
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Old 06-25-15, 07:34 PM   #14
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Have fun. I just got back from Tulsa which has turned into quite the bike racing town in the 30 years since I left home (I grew up there).

Budget more time than you expect to pin your numbers on, and double check that they are right side up.
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Old 06-25-15, 07:52 PM   #15
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Bring a roll of toilet paper, in case they run out in the Porta Potty. (Seriously, I keep a roll in my trunk for this reason.)
I feel like there's a story to be told there
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Old 06-26-15, 05:26 AM   #16
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Budget more time than you expect to pin your numbers on, and double check that they are right side up.
See those little holes on the corners? Those are for runners. Pin through the paper.
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Old 06-26-15, 05:40 AM   #17
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See those little holes on the corners? Those are for runners. Pin through the paper.
Twice for each pin. Seriously.
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Old 06-26-15, 05:48 AM   #18
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Having gotten a lot of life things out of the way this year I'm finally to a place where I can train regularly and I'm going to enter a local road race. Cat 5 beginner race is 2 laps of a 14mile circuit. Mostly my strategy at this point is to A. hope that its roughly 400 degrees outside and B. hope that there is a south wind.

Jenks Road Race - Bixby, OK
That's the most geometric RR course I've ever seen.

On the hill, if there's a headwind, drafting will matter, at some level.

You'll be going reasonably long stretches in each direction of the compass. If there's any wind at all it means you'll be seeing a (cross-)headwind, (cross-)tailwind, (cross-)crosswind, and a (cross-)crosswind in the other direction. I add "(cross-)" because the wind almost never cooperates on courses based on rectangular shaped building blocks, so the winds will be skewed a bit to a side.

In general the most dangerous time is in a crosswind. Make sure you find shelter. It may mean riding next to someone, on their sheltered side.

When at the limit the tailwind will be super tough. This is because there is a reduced draft effect (like not much if there's a 25 mph tailwind, for example). When I get shelled in flat and windy races it's almost always in the tailwind section.

Just hide from the wind in the headwind section. If you're not pulling you'll know you're in the headwind section because you'll constantly be slowing and you'll wonder why the guys at the front are going so slow. As you point out if the wind is blowing from the south and you're in the field it'll make the climb a bit easier relative to the guys in front. However, once the race blows apart, everyone will have to fight the wind on the hill. Personally I'd hope for wind coming from the north, for a tailwind climb, so that the gaps don't get too accentuated as thy would if the wind was from the south.
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Old 06-26-15, 09:06 AM   #19
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That's the most geometric RR course I've ever seen.

On the hill, if there's a headwind, drafting will matter, at some level.

You'll be going reasonably long stretches in each direction of the compass. If there's any wind at all it means you'll be seeing a (cross-)headwind, (cross-)tailwind, (cross-)crosswind, and a (cross-)crosswind in the other direction. I add "(cross-)" because the wind almost never cooperates on courses based on rectangular shaped building blocks, so the winds will be skewed a bit to a side.

In general the most dangerous time is in a crosswind. Make sure you find shelter. It may mean riding next to someone, on their sheltered side.

When at the limit the tailwind will be super tough. This is because there is a reduced draft effect (like not much if there's a 25 mph tailwind, for example). When I get shelled in flat and windy races it's almost always in the tailwind section.

Just hide from the wind in the headwind section. If you're not pulling you'll know you're in the headwind section because you'll constantly be slowing and you'll wonder why the guys at the front are going so slow. As you point out if the wind is blowing from the south and you're in the field it'll make the climb a bit easier relative to the guys in front. However, once the race blows apart, everyone will have to fight the wind on the hill. Personally I'd hope for wind coming from the north, for a tailwind climb, so that the gaps don't get too accentuated as thy would if the wind was from the south.
Thanks for the detailed run down. I am at least used to finding shelter from the wind (a constant here) on fast group rides. Likely the wind will be from the SW. I'm not a sprinter at all so if I'm up to any sort of attack it would have to be into the wind on the south end of the course during or after the climb and hope that the tailwind back neutralizes the chase a bit. Probably being too optimistic about my chances of attacking but I'll never know until I try.
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Old 06-26-15, 09:25 AM   #20
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I feel like there's a story to be told there
didnt happen to me, but a friend on another team at a race. the parking lot is not near the start. but there are some porta-pottys near the start which is nice. So this guy now decides he really needs to go....no TP. wound up using his gloves and arm warmers and sacrificed those
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Old 06-26-15, 12:20 PM   #21
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Having gotten a lot of life things out of the way this year I'm finally to a place where I can train regularly and I'm going to enter a local road race. Cat 5 beginner race is 2 laps of a 14mile circuit. Mostly my strategy at this point is to A. hope that its roughly 400 degrees outside and B. hope that there is a south wind.

Jenks Road Race - Bixby, OK
Course looks technical and as a CAT5, i can tell you expect acceleration at every corner. If you can hold a wheel, stick to it no matter what and if you get dropped, race some more.
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Old 06-26-15, 12:22 PM   #22
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didnt happen to me, but a friend on another team at a race. the parking lot is not near the start. but there are some porta-pottys near the start which is nice. So this guy now decides he really needs to go....no TP. wound up using his gloves and arm warmers and sacrificed those
LOL.. felt like that last week but the problem was it's restrooms with no doors ...just held it in as extra weight
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Old 06-26-15, 12:28 PM   #23
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didnt happen to me, but a friend
Sure!!
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Old 06-26-15, 01:27 PM   #24
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Course looks technical and as a CAT5, i can tell you expect acceleration at every corner. If you can hold a wheel, stick to it no matter what and if you get dropped, race some more.
Good point. You need finishes to count towards your Cat4 upgrade, so even if you get dropped, keep going and make sure the officials place you.
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Old 06-26-15, 01:42 PM   #25
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Sure!!
i'd take the weight penalty!
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