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Old 05-30-08, 08:54 PM   #1
grolby
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Fitchburg: I'm in. Are you?

Those folks at NEBRA sure are fast! I bought my USAC Road license and had my upgrade to Cat 4 confirmed in less than 24 hours. That means it's time to make good on my promise (not that it actually means jack, but I want to do it). There were still some slots open in registration, so it looks like I'll be racing Fitchburg in just over a month.

Of course, my training status is a bit of a question mark, though this past week seems to indicate that I am as fast as I ever was. What that means in the biggest race in New England, who knows! And of course, a stage race is a huge leap forward for me as a racer.

Oh, whatever. I'll see you all there. I expect to have some company in my suffering. And hey, maybe I'll even do okay. I figure I'll race a couple of criteriums in the weekends before the race, get back into the groove of racing. Best not to start off after two months without racing, I suppose. I now spend every waking moment in anticipation of the release of the race bible. See you in a month!
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Old 05-30-08, 10:24 PM   #2
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I'll be there in a month, too. F'ing stoked and a bit nervous.

Just catted up to 3's, too. This will be a trial by fire... as a 192# newbie aiming at top 20 in the GC in a climbing race.

My training for Fitchburg is super focused though and going great thus far, so I'm cautiously optimistic... now i could only drop 25 pounds...

See y'all out there!!!
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Old 05-30-08, 10:25 PM   #3
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Someday.....
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Old 05-31-08, 07:22 PM   #4
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I'm in for the fours. I'm wondering about the TT, Has anyone done it? Is it a hilly TT? Better with a road bike or a tt bike with a disc wheel?
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Old 06-01-08, 06:43 AM   #5
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Good luck to all of you, I'll be there cheering you on as a volunteer!

I train on the mountian route at least once a week, honestly, I don't see how anyone can attack the climb in Princeton center 9 times and then finish having to climb Wachusett Mtn. But then again, I'm not even close to the level of fitness most in this race are.

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I'm in for the fours. I'm wondering about the TT, Has anyone done it? Is it a hilly TT? Better with a road bike or a tt bike with a disc wheel?
My Sunday ride for today will start up Ringe Road (the tt road) - it's 7 miles of gradual climbing, nothing steep just continual uphill of various degrees.
I'm amazed they hold the tt on this road, it's probably the most chewed up road in the area (at least it was last year).

Good luck to all, hate to say it but you'll need it!
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Old 06-01-08, 08:59 AM   #6
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I'll be in the 4's. Took a break after the collegiate season and just finished 4 weeks of base. Starting intensity back up now and will have a mini peak for Fitchburg. I just hope its enough- I haven't raced in a while and have been getting fat while riding slow!

A teammate and I were thinking of pre-riding the course on the 21st or 22nd. I'll let you guys know if that happens, it would be nice to get a decent group together.
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Old 06-01-08, 11:01 AM   #7
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I road the tt route at the begining of today's ride. That's one long stretch of bad road. Pretty much as I remember it, gradual climbing for the first 5 miles, and then the last 2 miles are fast.
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Old 06-01-08, 09:26 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ldesfor1@ithaca View Post
I'll be there in a month, too. F'ing stoked and a bit nervous.

Just catted up to 3's, too. This will be a trial by fire... as a 192# newbie aiming at top 20 in the GC in a climbing race.

My training for Fitchburg is super focused though and going great thus far, so I'm cautiously optimistic... now i could only drop 25 pounds...

See y'all out there!!!
Dude, I would be thrilled to finish in the top 20 for Cat 4. Given my totally unstructured training, I don't know how likely that is to happen. I'm just going to keep riding a lot in June, then give myself a nice easy week going into the race to allow myself to be as fresh as possible for that first TT.

You may think you're heavy, but at least you have an excuse. I'm a 125lb bantamweight, but there are guys with 20 lbs on me who leave me for dead on steep climbs. On the plus side, I can fly on the moderate slopes, so that TT should suit me reasonably well. I think. I guess that if manage to land a top 20 in the first stage, I'll do my best to defend or better it. Otherwise, I'm not going to worry about it too much.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:37 AM   #9
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i'll be there doing my first-ever stage race..........

as a cat 2.

i'm excited.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:49 AM   #10
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i'll be there doing my first-ever stage race..........

as a cat 2.

i'm excited.
excellent choice.
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Old 06-02-08, 06:31 AM   #11
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My Sunday ride for today will start up Ringe Road (the tt road) - it's 7 miles of gradual climbing, nothing steep just continual uphill of various degrees.
I'm amazed they hold the tt on this road, it's probably the most chewed up road in the area (at least it was last year).

I have no idea why they changed the TT from Rt. 31 (near the hotel) down to Rindge Rd. Yes, it is horribly broken up, but on the plus side it is mostly uphill through the bad sections. I'll be there as a spectator, I usually go to the circuit race and occasionally to the Mt Wachusett race, hanging out in the center of Princeton. That 2-tiered hill in the town is horrendous (well from my perspective at least). And I have no idea how they ride "up" the "downhill" part of the mountain road at the end...I can barely make it up the easier uphill route.

Last edited by Suzie Green; 06-02-08 at 10:18 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old 06-02-08, 09:38 AM   #12
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I'll be there as a 2 as well. Still waiting for my teammates to cat up so I may be going solo...
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Old 06-04-08, 11:56 AM   #13
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That 2-tiered hill in the town is horrendous (well from my perspective at least). And I have no idea how they ride "up" the "downhill" part of the mountain road at the end...I can barely make it up the easier uphill route.
No joke. That 2-tiered hill killed me mentally last year - I punched it the first time around and as I turned the corner, there was that wall. That last 200m going up the "down" section to the summit still haunts me.

I won't be doing it this year, but I did most of the mountain stage course and did the summit climb over the weekend. The roads are in great shape.

Best of luck to all who are racing.
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Old 06-04-08, 12:08 PM   #14
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Won't be doing the race (cat 5), but did ride up Wachusett a couple weeks ago....

I was a bit disappointed, probably due to inaccurate expectations....Lived in the SF Bay Area for many years and had my own preconceived notion of what a climb to a 2000ft summit should be....long steady climb going from more or less sea-level to 2000 ft....Been living here now for about 6 years, and jsut getting back to cycling so figured Wachusett would be the closest opportunity for the climbing I used to love...instead found a series of short steep sections interspersed with much flatter if not downhill bits.....The ride back and forth through Worcester didn't help much either.

That said, the Princeton area was awesome for riding....maybe I'll be a 4 next year and give it a go...
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Old 06-04-08, 05:43 PM   #15
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Won't be doing the race (cat 5), but did ride up Wachusett a couple weeks ago....

I was a bit disappointed, probably due to inaccurate expectations....Lived in the SF Bay Area for many years and had my own preconceived notion of what a climb to a 2000ft summit should be....long steady climb going from more or less sea-level to 2000 ft....Been living here now for about 6 years, and jsut getting back to cycling so figured Wachusett would be the closest opportunity for the climbing I used to love...instead found a series of short steep sections interspersed with much flatter if not downhill bits.....The ride back and forth through Worcester didn't help much either.

That said, the Princeton area was awesome for riding....maybe I'll be a 4 next year and give it a go...
The men's race is 109 miles, that's 9 times going up that ungodly hill into Princeton center, and then the other ungodly hill that awaits you right after as you turn right onto Mountian road. And for the final lap you get the "pleasure" of the uphill finish ridiing up the mountian the "back" route - which if you haven't done it is a continuous straight uphill climb (not the leisurely way you're used to taking).

I suggest you try it the next time you have a spare 6 hours and report back to everyone doing race how much fun it was.

Seriously, if you want a challange, head out to N. Adams and climb Greylock - it's a hoot! Trust me

Last edited by BarryJo; 06-04-08 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 06-04-08, 06:02 PM   #16
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The men's race is 109 miles, that's 9 times going up that ungodly hill into Princeton center, and then the other ungodly hill that awaits you right after as you turn right onto Mountian road. And for the final lap you get the "pleasure" of the uphill finish ridiing up the mountian the "back" route - which if you haven't done it is a continuous straight uphill climb (not the leisurely way you're used to taking).

I suggest you try it the next time you have a spare 6 hours and report back to everyone doing race how much fun it was.

Seriously, if you want a challange, head out to N. Adams and climb Greylock - it's a hoot! Trust me
Is the road up Greylock completed yet? I think they're repaving it...should either be done this year or next year....I forget. All I know is it was definitely due for a repaving from what I've heard in recent years....
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Old 06-04-08, 06:32 PM   #17
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Is the road up Greylock completed yet? I think they're repaving it...should either be done this year or next year....I forget. All I know is it was definitely due for a repaving from what I've heard in recent years....
Thanks GW for reminding me -
No, unfortunately the access road to Greylock was shut down for repairs last year and won't reopen until next year (no autos, bikes or pedestrians). The ride up should be a lot nicer once they are finished with the repairs. One would hope anyway.
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Old 06-04-08, 07:30 PM   #18
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poor choice of words on my part.

Not saying it wasn't challenging...just different than I was expecting...seemed the "down" route was a steadier grade than the up (though the road surface wasn't much fun).

I'll look for Greylock, though that's a bit far to hit from home in a day....
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Old 06-04-08, 07:58 PM   #19
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Never really saw Fitchburg as a climbing race, though I've been injured since they changed the TT and even last year it wasn't the waif-like guys who were winning but the large, horsepower-based gents who could kill the TT. The pro race is a little different as a break usually wins the road race with enough time, but with the 3s, if you TT well and have a good team there shouldn't be too much difficulty in surviving the road race.
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Old 06-05-08, 12:51 AM   #20
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Greg, good to see you've come around to doing Fitchburg. I riding more or less unattached in fours, so it'll be good to at least know someone in the peloton.
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Old 06-05-08, 07:04 AM   #21
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poor choice of words on my part.

Not saying it wasn't challenging...just different than I was expecting...seemed the "down" route was a steadier grade than the up (though the road surface wasn't much fun).

I'll look for Greylock, though that's a bit far to hit from home in a day....
Not to get off topic, but here's a great resource for climbing routes in New England, a lot of these should be just what you're looking for - although you have to travel to get to most of them.
http://www.northeastcycling.com/Mtn_Climbs.html
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Old 06-05-08, 08:23 AM   #22
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I was a bit disappointed, probably due to inaccurate expectations....Lived in the SF Bay Area for many years and had my own preconceived notion of what a climb to a 2000ft summit should be....long steady climb going from more or less sea-level to 2000 ft....Been living here now for about 6 years, and jsut getting back to cycling so figured Wachusett would be the closest opportunity for the climbing I used to love...instead found a series of short steep sections interspersed with much flatter if not downhill bits........

It's a bit further for you, but a better climb is in southern NH, along Rt. 101 to the gap between Pack Monadnock and Temple mountains. It's equally fun from either direction (from Peterborough or from Wilton) and you can top it off by climbing the road to the summit of Pack Monadnock itself. It's harder and narrower than Wachusett. They do charge the auto drivers a fee to take the road, I am not sure about bikes however.
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Old 06-05-08, 05:46 PM   #23
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It's a bit further for you, but a better climb is in southern NH, along Rt. 101 to the gap between Pack Monadnock and Temple mountains. It's equally fun from either direction (from Peterborough or from Wilton) and you can top it off by climbing the road to the summit of Pack Monadnock itself. It's harder and narrower than Wachusett. They do charge the auto drivers a fee to take the road, I am not sure about bikes however.
That's funny, when I headed out on Ringe Rd Sunday (the Lonjso tt course) I ended up riding up into Peterborough with the intention of riding up Pack, but there was some kind of running race going on.

Tis true, some points on the road up pack are so steep you're looking straight up into the sky.
And there is an access fee of $5 for all. At least there was last year.
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Old 06-05-08, 06:31 PM   #24
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so does anyone have any inside info on the rr course? are there any technical descents on it? how much climbing is on each lap/the finish section? help appreciated, thanks.
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Old 06-05-08, 09:32 PM   #25
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I will be there, and entirely out of my element, in the fours. My only hope is if it's 95* and humid as hell, so I'll have a leg up on all of you.

I've heard the descent is pretty straight. They're got some pretty information about the courses here, and if you look at some of the 'race videos' you can get a decent feel for the course. Or at least that's what they tell me.
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