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Old 06-06-07, 11:45 AM   #1
Hipcycler
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Crit Chronicles; Today--What I learned practicing cornering...

Went back out to the same Whitnall Park course today; Round Two.

I ride out there about 12 miles easy....then begin the laps. Last time I did seven laps, today I did 10 laps. Remember, this course is just under a mile and has the one sharp, 90-degree turn into an uphill that's tough.

Here's what I learned today:

1. My biggest flaw in cornering appears to be not looking THROUGH the turn. When I DO that, it seems I execute a must smoother turn there.

2. I can't get uphill worth a damn.

3. My HRM is set for a training zone of 135 bpm low end and 160 bpm high end. I have a max somewhere around 177. I was so sick of hearing the double beeps indicating I was out of the high end of my zone that I just shut the thing off. Usual ride, about a 131 Ave. HR....today, a whopping 146.

4. I wore a second watch just to see what racing this course for 15 minutes felt like. I learned today that a crit doing laps like this for only 15 minutes is nothing. That's the time they have given this support race I am in on the 16th. This, to me, translates into one thing on race day....warm up plenty and go out there and hit it....hit it hard from the start. It's only 15 minutes!

So today I did 10 laps in 35 minutes.

Then, since it was nice outside and I had some extra time I continued to ride my usual route. On top of that I hooked up with a hammer on the way back for a while.

Some dude in a plain red jersey and what looked like a purple bike was ahead of me. I was working at 19's into the wind and he was pulling away. Finally I got closer when he had to stop for traffic. Then I was able to catch him finally at 21 mph.

I got up next to him and said, "I owe you a pull." He said, "OK, I'll latch on."
It turned out great. Instead of just limping home after my tought 10 laps on the race course, now I was working hard, pushing myself again pulling this guy. Then he took a stretch. We were working together with some pretty stiff wind 15+ at about 22 mph.

All in all...pretty pleased with the workout.
Ended up with a total of 40 miles at 17.5 ave. mph.

Feedback on my cornering drills at all?
HR numbers?

Seems to me I'm learning that crit racing, while it may be about a lot of things, is mostly going to be about accelerations and cornering.
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Old 06-06-07, 11:48 AM   #2
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How is the 90 degree turn sharp? Is it a narrow road?

My cornering technique is very simple: follow the guy in front of me- so long as he stays on the road (and follows a decent line).
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Old 06-06-07, 11:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hipcycler
Here's what I learned today:

1. My biggest flaw in cornering appears to be not looking THROUGH the turn. When I DO that, it seems I execute a must smoother turn there.

4. ... This, to me, translates into one thing on race day....warm up plenty and go out there and hit it....hit it hard from the start. It's only 15 minutes!
I think both of these comments (in particular) are spot on.

Your body goes where your eyes look, so looking through the turn to where you want to go is a good thing. In the race look at the open space you want to go into, rather than focusing on the obstacle you're trying to avoid.

And as for warm up, your race will be hard from the gun. So warm up hard building up to a few short, maximal, efforts. If you've gone all out a couple of times in the warm up, its much easier the first time you go ballistic in the race.
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Old 06-06-07, 12:14 PM   #4
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I'd be careful with going from the start. Make sure you're either drafting somebody, or you've got a gap. Don't go hard just because the race is short.

In last week's 4/5 crit here, one guy pulled everyone around really fast for the first 3 laps because he felt good. Then they handed him his ass.
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Old 06-06-07, 12:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by filtersweep
How is the 90 degree turn sharp? Is it a narrow road?

My cornering technique is very simple: follow the guy in front of me- so long as he stays on the road (and follows a decent line).
It's actually sharper than 90.
http://maps.google.com/maps?client=f...&t=k&z=18&om=1
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Old 06-06-07, 12:49 PM   #6
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^The very one.
Looking at that map, you're coming at it from the road at the top of the screen, down....sharp right and then uphill....
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Old 06-06-07, 12:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterrockets
I'd be careful with going from the start. Make sure you're either drafting somebody, or you've got a gap. Don't go hard just because the race is short.
I'd agree with that in any other circumstance. However, given this is a "celebrity" race, presumably with people of very different skill levels, and the premium Hip has on not falling, I think blasting it from the gun, just to weed down the field has a big safety advantage.

I'd still try to do it in a manner that I got a gap, and didn't tow people.

But even if you tow the field for half a lap or so, jumping fromthe gun should weed the field down to a safer size.
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Old 06-06-07, 01:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterrockets
I'd be careful with going from the start. Make sure you're either drafting somebody, or you've got a gap. Don't go hard just because the race is short.

In last week's 4/5 crit here, one guy pulled everyone around really fast for the first 3 laps because he felt good. Then they handed him his ass.
Don't forget this is a celebrity race. At least half the field is going to be shelled when Hip puts his first move in.
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Old 06-06-07, 01:58 PM   #9
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I agree, if you've got a gap, then it's all good. Just don't tow the pack around. Towing three guys around, I'd call that a gap, as long as they take some turns. If they won't work, then recover momentarily, then attack them, curb to curb to curb swinging (assuming it's safe).
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