I love road racing OR Kevin I'm sorry I peed in your car.
Drove up with Kevin (teammate) on friday night. Hotel was effing hot, sweat at night, dehydrated in the morning. Start the hydration Yoyo now.
Woke up saturday morning and drove to the race. Got there w/ enough time to find a bathroom, register, and pre-ride the finish.
Copperopolis works like this, Big Climb, rollers in the wind, small climb, crazy bumpy descent, repeat for 3 laps with a slight uphill finish just after the descent. I have 2 goals for this race, same as always.
Plan A: win the race
Plan B: Learn something that will facilitate Plan A next time.
On the lineup I see a few familiar faces; the villiage pedaler who won Zamora and some teammates, and a guy on a Carbon Soloist (drool) that I think was at Ward's Ferry last weekend. A group of guys is talking about how they're cool because they didn't drink the kool aid and still have hairy legs. Whistle blows and we roll out. We roll out pretty unexcitingly to the big climb. About a third of the way up we're still just hanging out and I decide there's NO way I'm letting everyone take it easy so I push the pace at the front a bit. I try to keep the cadence a little higher this time (75?) because I've heard this will help save my legs for later. We get to the top and regroup and about half the field is gone. This includes the Sasquatch club. Awesome.
The rollers are uneventful except that we manage to form an eschelon in a crosswind. THIS is why its so great to split the pack. Apparently, the guys left know what they're doing.
The descent is insane. We're going 35, but if the road were smooth we would be going 45. I can't feel my hands they're vibrating so much. I'm avoiding potholes, gravel, rocks, shelled water bottles. Braking is futile because my tires are barely making contact anyway.
On the second lap's big climb some guy in green takes off and proceeds to do the rest of the lap solo. The village pedalers organize the chase and are much more patient about it than I would have been. Kudos to them for being smart. We catch him at the bottom of the little climb with the intention of dropping him but he just hops right back on. By now I think the pack is down to 9.
Then on the third lap's big climb he goes again! There's no way he can do that entire lap solo again but i'm feeling good so I go with him. I figured we'd wait for the group at the top. Once we get there, the group is nowhere in sight, we think there might be a 2 man chase, so we decide to work together but take it easy until the chase group catches up. This never happens and we slowly pick up the pace as we recover from the climb. Me and the green guy work together through the rollers, pass a lot of other group's stragglers, pass the juniors who started before us, and make it to the base of the small hill without anybody from our group in sight. Holy crap this might work. my stomach instantly gets queasy. I attack him halfway up the little climb and this sticks for all of 60 seconds. He counterattacks but I'm at that perfect cadence for standing and laying down the power. I decide he wants to work so i'm gonna let him. We make it to the bottom and hit the rollers before the finish. He's going 20 when he could be going 25. I'm 2 inches from his rear wheel and I'm not coming around for anything. 1km, still cruising. I've got all day, the pack isn't anywhere. I jump at 200M. I told myself not to do this at the beginning of the day. 200m Is too far. At least I remember to shift down this time for the incline. I look back and i've got maybe 3 bike lenghts on the guy in green. He's not on my wheel. Awesome. Time for pain. I keep pushing until I hit the line. I've got maybe 1 bike length but that's enough for me. Race Over. First win. Damn I feel happy. It's a cat 5 race but don't take this away from me.
We finished about 4 or 5 minutes before the guy who came in third (the pedaler from zamora) but he had to solo most of the last lap in the wind. the field is either super far back or has dissolved.
Drive home, I drank way too much dr. pepper at In-n-out and then there was a 20 min wait at the Bay Bridge toll plaza.
Plan A: achieved
Plan B: Last week I learned that I descend faster because I'm heavier. This week I learned that crappy roads remove this advantage and I can't pull away in descents like I did last week. I think my heavier weight increases my rolling resistance over bumps. Also I need to remember to NOT JUMP TOO EARLY. I've done this in every sprint I've been a part of. I need to be less twitchy.