I set a goal for tonight's Tuesday Nighter to execute my first successful attack, and it worked! I've always just been a sprinter...
Tonight attacked on the last hill of the hilly section, on the last lap, ~6 miles from the finish. I coordinated with my training partner to meet me at the back of the pack on the last lap, before that hill. He showed up, I lit it up relatively easy for a sprinter, and we got away crisply. I held a reasonable pace up the hill, and we had 100m at the top.
After two or three minutes, a triathlete bridged up to us, and remarkably didn’t bring the pack with him. We worked together for a few pulls, and the pack got to within 20m, but this triathlete was FAST. Next thing I know, the pack is falling back fast. This guy has some serious horsepower.
Unfortunately, we dropped my training partner, but we had to put the last nail in the pack’s coffin. I took a strong pull up a hill, then had to sit in till the finish. This guy hauled us at 32-35 mph for 10 minutes. I tried to take a pull, but I couldn’t do better than 28, so I just sat in and suffered. My HR was 186 for the last 8 minutes – my LT is 178 (or so I thought), and my max (road measured) is 194. I was really suffering.
I told him I wouldn’t sprint against him, just out of respect for all the work he did, and we sailed in 40s ahead of the pack. It felt a little “wrong” to have a breakaway with a guy on a TT bike, but there were three other strong triathletes in the front of the chase on their TT rigs too.
Whatever. I got the break started at the perfect spot, with two road bikes, and that was a huge move for this lowly sprinter. This was in the Bs, so I guess I'm off to the As again to work on fitness and survival with the elite riders. I can finish with those guys, but it will be a while before I'm affecting the race...
Here’s where we took off (elevation of one lap: 9-miles, 150 ft top to bottom, first three hills into the 15mph headwind):