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Old 03-18-08, 04:16 PM   #1
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Copperopolis roll call

I'm registered but haven't decided for sure if I'm going. 6 hour drive. each way. crappy raods. only one day of racing. Thinking of bailing and doing Del Mar on Saturday and Ontario on Sunday. Who else is going? And for those who have been, are the roads really as bad as I've heard?
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Old 03-18-08, 04:20 PM   #2
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I'm in. Never done it before. Part of me is hoping it's not as brutal as everybody says, part of me hopes it is.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:20 PM   #3
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They are both epic and horrible. You finish saying I don't want to do this race next year while marking it on your calendar.

My banged up knees and hip will be toeing the line for 83 miles of fun and suffering.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:29 PM   #4
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I'm registered but haven't decided for sure if I'm going. 6 hour drive. each way. crappy raods. only one day of racing. Thinking of bailing and doing Del Mar on Saturday and Ontario on Sunday. Who else is going? And for those who have been, are the roads really as bad as I've heard?
I think every district in the country has a race that is its defining race. This is one of those races/courses. The roads suck (think the top of Gibraltar) in certain places, especially on the descent, and are awesome, narrow country roads in certain places. In net, it's epic, and well worth the 6 hour journey from S Barb. As long as they hold this race I'll keep showing up.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:32 PM   #5
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I think every district in the country has a race that is its defining race. This is one of those races/courses. The roads suck (think the top of Gibraltar) in certain places, especially on the descent, and are awesome, narrow country roads in certain places. In net, it's epic, and well worth the 6 hour journey from S Barb. As long as they hold this race I'll keep showing up.
You in for masters or cat 4?
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Old 03-18-08, 04:32 PM   #6
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After last year's reports, I'd have to say you guys are insane.

Be sure to get photos again this year, okay?
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Old 03-18-08, 04:35 PM   #7
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You in for masters or cat 4?
M 45+ 4/5 @ 1145 am. That's why I LOVE NCal!. They recognize that slow old guys like to race, wt. having to go up against young genetic mutants like you, and old genetic mutants like the Blounts (now sadly in retirement) of the world.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:46 PM   #8
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I'll be there. It's my first regular road race (hillclimbs and Everest Challenge aren't normal races) since about 1991. I'll be in the M45 4/5s too. I've not been going well so I am just going for the experience.

Steve, you could do Orosi next weekend instead- less driving for you.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:49 PM   #9
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After last year's reports, I'd have to say you guys are insane.

Be sure to get photos again this year, okay?
As they say the definition of insanity is "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results". I know I'm going to unseat all my fillings and make my dentist rich; going to fry what's left of my one remaining functioning brain cell as I deprive it of any semblance of oxygen as I try to hang on in the opening climb; and scare myself to death on that insane descent at the end.

That said, I can't wait. It's like a moth being drawn to the light. You know you're going to your death, but the journey is worth it!
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Old 03-18-08, 04:53 PM   #10
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Steve, you could do Orosi next weekend instead- less driving for you.
I'm signed up for Orosi and Hanford next weekend too. That's part of my hesitation... driving up to Fresno (in this case way past Fresno) two weekends in a row, when I can do two races closer to home instead.

LT Intolerant, I hate crappy roads, especially descents. I don't think I could race down Gibraltar. **** on Sunday is about as bad as I can deal with trying to "race" down. How does it compare?

Edit: maybe if I had some teammates in my category. I was going to bail, and then a teammate signed up and begged me to come, but he just called me and told me that he still isn't feeling well enough.
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Old 03-18-08, 04:57 PM   #11
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I'm signed up for Orosi and Hanford next weekend too. That's part of my hesitation... driving up to Fresno (in this case way past Fresno) two weekends in a row, when I can do two races closer to home instead.

LT Intolerant, I hate crappy roads, especially descents. I don't think I could race down Gibraltar. **** on Sunday is about as bad as I can deal with trying to "race" down. How does it compare?
The descent is longer, faster in places, and the pavement IS worse. I don't want to scare you, I can do that to myself, but it's not for the faint of heart.

That said it's not a "technical" descent, and it does flatten out in portions. It's only dangerous if someone crashes (has never happened to me in the 10 times I've done it), or if a vehicle is coming the other way (fire engine 2 years ago coming to the aid of a rider who crashed almost killed 6 of us). I think the course really favors an all-arounder.
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Old 03-18-08, 05:17 PM   #12
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I'm signed up for Orosi
Orosi is one of the three hardest one day races in NoCal (I'd put Hamilton and Challenge as the other two, with University getting an honorable mention). Hands down my favorite. The scenery, when you have time to look around and if your vision isn't blurred, is stunning this time of year. The climbing starts right away and every time you think it's going to level off you look up and go...ohhhhhhhh.

Clobberopolis, since they repaved some of the climb, is not anywhere close to as hard, but it's got cachet. And it is awesome.

If you're choosing which Velopromo T shirt you'd rather have...Clobberfest is Everest with a guide. Orosi is K2 solo without oxygen.

There is a much smaller group capable of winning Orosi.

I love both those races.

(The Hanford crit is kinda fun, nice and technical, small town square thingy.)

Last edited by Racer Ex; 03-18-08 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 03-18-08, 05:18 PM   #13
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I'm in. Never done it before. Part of me is hoping it's not as brutal as everybody says, part of me hopes it is.
Potholes are big enough to swallow the bike. I have done it once, and thats they way I will keep it.
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Old 03-18-08, 05:28 PM   #14
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Potholes are big enough to swallow the bike. I have done it once, and thats they way I will keep it.
Should I ride the Open Pros and keep the Ksryiums at home?
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Old 03-18-08, 06:55 PM   #15
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I won copperopolis last year. I was a 5, it was awesome. I live in Colorado now.

I have nothing to add. I wish I could race it again this year though.
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Old 03-18-08, 07:31 PM   #16
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Should I ride the Open Pros and keep the Ksryiums at home?
Which ever is more durable. Someone mentioned they re-paved some of the climbs, so maybe it's not as bad now, but that descent to the finish line was horrible. I am pretty sure it was responsible for my HRM demise.
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Old 03-18-08, 10:21 PM   #17
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Old 03-19-08, 12:04 AM   #18
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me 2
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Old 03-19-08, 12:07 AM   #19
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Old 03-19-08, 12:26 AM   #20
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Wind, crappy roads, long race, long drive, easter sunday. I'll stay home thank you. On second thought, I could see Levi.
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Old 03-20-08, 01:23 PM   #21
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I'm out. I'm just going to stay home and train for next weekend's sufferfest...
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Old 03-20-08, 02:16 PM   #22
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Are you kidding, this is one of my top 5 favorite races!
I'll be there.

Here's a course description copied from the former AMD masters team blog:

Course: A rough, hilly and windy 22 mile loop of rural country roads. Don't believe the race add that says the course is a 20 mile loop!
Course Description: All roads have rough surfaces unless otherwise noted. The start is in downtown Milton. Don't blink. The course goes about a quarter mile and turns left onto Rock Creek Road. Rock Creek descends slightly, crosses a creek and then starts slowly climbing up to the feed zone. After the feed zone the course continues gradually climbing for approximately two miles where you come to the steepest climb on the course. This climb is only about a quarter mile long, but it is brutal. At least it will be by the end of the race. Before the steep section there is a stretch of road that has been repaved. The difference between the rough road and smooth road is amazing. I found myself shifting up a gear, going faster and finding it easier on the smooth section. Quite a nice respite.
At the top of the climb, the course continues undulating gradually upwards until you come to Salt Springs Reservoir. The course goes past a trailer park where the road changes to a wonderfully smooth surface for the next three or four miles. This section along the reservoir is mostly flat with a few rolling hills thrown in. Now comes the strange part. Rock Creek Road turns off and now the course is on Valley Road. Valley Road goes through what looks like some farmer's driveway, takes a short twisty dip, crosses a cattle guard and puts you on Salt Springs Road. Salt Springs Road is flat, but very exposed to the usual cross wind. After crossing another cattle guard or two, Salt Springs Road tilts up ever so slightly to the intersection with Hunt Road where you will turn left into the usual head wind. Hunt Road is flat for about four miles and then crosses a series of short fairly steep rollers. After a couple of miles of that, Hunt Road starts climbing back over the ridge that you crossed on the way out on Rock Creek. This climb isn't very steep, but on the last lap you'll think it's L'Alpe d'Huez. The descent is fast, rough, and twisty. Be careful through here. At the bottom it is about two miles to the finish over some more rolling hills. The finish itself is at the top of a small hill. After the finish there is another section of smooth road for about a mile and a half back to Milton Road and the start area.
Distances: Five laps and 110 miles for the Sr. 1/2/Pro's. Catagory 3's do four laps for 88 miles, and Sr. Women 1/2/3 and most other senior groups do three laps for 66 miles.
Road Surface: Mostly poor narrow roads with lots of patches. There is one stretch of excellent pavement by the lake that is about three miles long.
Gearing: If you don't bring a 42x24 or 39x23 you will most likely die!
Facilities: There are plenty of portable rest rooms. Please use them! This and other races are always under threat of being cancelled because of riders relieving themselves in inappropriate places. There is NO food or water in Milton. The nearest store is in Farmington which is fifteen miles away towards Stockton on Highway 4.
Weather: In early April the weather can be quite nice, though cool in the morning. It can also pour down rain, so come prepared. The wind usually blows from the west and picks up as the day goes on. This means that there will be a fairly strong cross wind on Salt Spring Road. It also means that there will be a head wind coming back on Hunt Road to the finish.
If you suffer from allergies, this is prime pollen country with all the grass. From experience, I would recommend that you take your allergy medicine BEFORE the race. If you take it afterwards, you're pretty much wasting your time. Of course, be sure to use a USOC approved medicine so you don't get tagged for drug control.
Feeding: The feed zone is on Rock Creek Road about two miles from the start area. It is on a gradual hill with plenty of parking. I usually start the race with three bottles and skip the first two opportunities for feeding at two and twenty-four miles covered and get feeds at forty-six, sixty-eight, and ninety miles. Using this method, the feed zone is usually pretty calm by the time I need a feed as a lot of riders have dropped out by that time.
Rules Specific to this race: Don't bring your ultra light equipment to this race. If you have carbon fiber water bottle cages, put on some aluminum or steel cages for this race. If you don't you will probably lose a water bottle on the rough roads. Tubulars are probably better than clinchers for this race because the clinchers can get pinch flats from the pot holed roads.
Race Advice: Remember, just because you can get up a steep hill in a certain gear doesn't mean it's a good idea. Save your legs and use an easy gear as much as possible. This race is won AND lost by slowly beating the riders into submission. Save everything you can for later in the race when you'll need it.
It is not uncommon for a break to go in the first few miles of this race. Other riders will join in the following couple of laps and the winner of the race will be gone before half distance almost every time. It seems like this would be a race to be patient in and perhaps that is why the early break almost always succeeds. It should be noted that a number of those riders in the early break will get dropped , but not all of them.
A good place to make things happen is either on or just after the steep section of Rock Creek Road. Another good place to go is in the cross wind on Salt Spring Road.
It is not uncommon for less than twenty of the 100+ starters to finish the Sr. 1/2/Pro race.
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Old 03-20-08, 02:43 PM   #23
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Thanks PM. Great description, which reinforces for me that I just want to finish this race in one piece.
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Old 03-21-08, 11:04 AM   #24
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man this is gonna be brutal haha...i get the feeling i should have done more training in the hills

should be fun though! If any of you E4's spot me say hi as I always enjoy putting names to faces. Ill be wearing a BBC jersey (Berkeley Bike Club) and have a large dragon tatoo on my left calf (give me a break i was 18 at the time LoL)

see you guys up there
baw
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Old 03-21-08, 11:11 AM   #25
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Straight climbers don't win here. There is a lot of flat, wind after the first hill & a fairly tech decent after the last hill. Well rounder riders succeed there.

I'm a little to banged up still to put 5 hard hours in on that course so as much as I hate to I'm out.
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