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Old 03-12-14, 11:18 AM   #8926
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We'll do a mock road race once a month or so where we split up the big team into category teams. We'll send out a small break, a slightly larger chase, and then the main field. I think it's been pretty helpful for the newer racers, especially learning when to work and even more importantly, when to not work.
Great post and that is a great way to do it.
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Old 03-12-14, 11:26 AM   #8927
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Great post and that is a great way to do it.
We did one a couple of weeks ago where we sent the women's team out as the break with a 6 minute headstart, the chase was the E4's plus a strong 18 year old plus me (45+). I have all my teammates in the main pack, so I have no reason to work. 18 year old has no teammates, so he shouldn't be working with the 4's either, but he thinks he needs to prove himself, so he's killing himself in the rotation. After awhile I show him the old trick of setting up at the back just to the off side of the rotation so that when a rider gets to the end, he'll look and think he's the end of the line, and then you slide back over and get towed.
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Old 03-12-14, 09:19 PM   #8928
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Folsom Bike Race Ride...first one of the season. Big turnout and some heavy hitters. So much pain, but so fast, too. ~30 miles or so of agony.
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Old 03-12-14, 09:31 PM   #8929
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Folsom Bike Race Ride...first one of the season. Big turnout and some heavy hitters. So much pain, but so fast, too. ~30 miles or so of agony.
Saw a pic on FB - did Matt C win it?
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Old 03-12-14, 09:39 PM   #8930
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Going to side with Matt on this one. In my own elitist opinion too many people sit and worry about team tactics in the lower categories when in actual fact many guys on the team are just doing their best not to blow up or just hang on. It is rare that a 3/4/5 team has the strength/fitness in all their riders to be truly organized much less develop a leadout train for a sprinter.
Not trying to be a dick but just saying I wouldn't worry about teamwork as much as I would getting everyone stronger to be able to be active in the race.
Unless of course you guys are a solid domestic elite team comprised of 1/2 riders.
That seems pretty fair to me. The more I think about it, we need to deal with the amount of pack fodder on the team. I'll work with them more on fitness then.
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Old 03-12-14, 09:50 PM   #8931
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Saw a pic on FB - did Matt C win it?
Not 100% sure. I ended up in a chase group that broke off the main group on the last climb. We chased hard for 10-miles, but had no chance of catching those guys. While eating, I think I heard one of the FB guys one it (Novikoff or Tufts), but wouldn't be surprised if Matt or Kessler won. Kessler seems to win 80% of the time.

Great ride with 4 sprint points. Monthly tallies of sprints and finishes for shop gift cards:

Wednesday Night Race Rides - Folsom Bike & Town Center Bike and Tri
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Old 03-13-14, 07:22 AM   #8932
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Had to look that up in the dictionary. Originally from the rkwaki verbiage for big *****... Remedy? SUck it up buttercup
sucked it up and did a bunch of 2' intervals this a.m. suck came to mind multiple times.
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Old 03-13-14, 07:49 AM   #8933
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sucked it up and did a bunch of 2' intervals this a.m. suck came to mind multiple times.
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Old 03-13-14, 08:00 AM   #8934
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Did 90' of z2 yesterday on TT clip-ons to get more prep for this weekends stage race. was mighty tough with 20 mph winds.
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Old 03-13-14, 11:22 AM   #8935
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Hope I'm not jinxing myself here, but my knee seems to be gradually returning to feeling normal even as I train through it. I don't know if it's responding to PT or just getting better over time or a bit of both, but I'm starting to feel more optimistic about the whole thing. With any luck I can actually start to get a little faster over the next month or two. For now, I am sloooooow. Up to 5x10 subthreshold intervals to build endurance, so ramping it up seems to be going well! It'll be interesting to see what happens when my coach starts throwing in the above-threshold stuff . Probably pain.

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Going to side with Matt on this one. In my own elitist opinion too many people sit and worry about team tactics in the lower categories when in actual fact many guys on the team are just doing their best not to blow up or just hang on. It is rare that a 3/4/5 team has the strength/fitness in all their riders to be truly organized much less develop a leadout train for a sprinter.
Not trying to be a dick but just saying I wouldn't worry about teamwork as much as I would getting everyone stronger to be able to be active in the race.
Unless of course you guys are a solid domestic elite team comprised of 1/2 riders.
One of the most valuable things I learned last year when I got to Cat 3 and was able to start doing some races with the big boys (1/2/3 and 2/3) was that, for the most part, tactical planning is of pretty limited use, as is practicing specific details like leadouts. It's not that I've never had a plan work out in a race, but chances are you are not going to be able to accurately predict the progression of the race or the ability of various teammates to perform a given task from the parking lot. Good tactics means reading what's going on and responding effectively. When I raced with my Cat 2 and 3 teammates last year, we had probably the least sophisticated pre-race plans I've ever had on a team - generally it was things like "at least one guy needs to be on every attack," or "if Travis goes, you damn well better try and follow him," or "Will is our best shot at the win, so let's just do whatever we're able to in the race to help that happen." And then, thanks to a relatively fit team and, most importantly, effective communication and understanding of how to race, we did a pretty good job of executing on that. Which doesn't mean we always got a good result, due to bad luck or not having strong enough legs, but we DID race effectively as a team in a way that I've never done with the most grandiose of plans in Cat 4. And the only way that happens is through race experience and having riders who are all actually strong enough to actively race.
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Old 03-13-14, 12:03 PM   #8936
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We did one a couple of weeks ago where we sent the women's team out as the break with a 6 minute headstart, the chase was the E4's plus a strong 18 year old plus me (45+). I have all my teammates in the main pack, so I have no reason to work. 18 year old has no teammates, so he shouldn't be working with the 4's either, but he thinks he needs to prove himself, so he's killing himself in the rotation. After awhile I show him the old trick of setting up at the back just to the off side of the rotation so that when a rider gets to the end, he'll look and think he's the end of the line, and then you slide back over and get towed.
After awhile I show him the old trick of setting up at the back just to the off side of the rotation so that when a rider gets to the end, he'll look and think he's the end of the line, and then you slide back over and get towed.

I'll add this to my training/riding bible
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Old 03-13-14, 01:18 PM   #8937
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Got out yesterday in just shorts and a jersey for the first time in 6+ months. It was nice. Cruised for a while, did some sprints to keep the legs going, and got a tan.
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Old 03-13-14, 02:22 PM   #8938
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got a tan.
Ha. My legs still look super white compared to the cali-boys around here.. my Seattle anti-tan is taking a long time to go away!!

A weekend in Walla Walla always did the tanlines well though.
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Old 03-13-14, 02:52 PM   #8939
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Tried ZeCanon for the first time this morning on HWY9. Only enough room for 5 intervals on that climb. Ouch! The last one really hurt, nearly as bad as a 20min test, wattage splits 342/343/340/341/332.
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Old 03-13-14, 03:15 PM   #8940
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I have had so many conversations with guys talking about teamwork and will say that it can/does happen but everyone has to be capable of winning on any given day.
I have to say that I think this is often the case, but I don't think it necessarily has to be. The main thing with having a real "Plan A" guy is that he has to have a demonstrated ability to get the job done. You can't be like "Joe is our leader for this race because he's skinny and seems pretty quick up the hills on team rides." That's a foolish call. On the other hand, if Joe has shown, repeatedly, that he's a contender in this sort of race, working specifically for his chance can be a reasonable call if the rest of the team is unsure that they have the legs to place well. But the downside of this approach is that it's super-vulnerable to chance. If events don't unfold right or Plan A Guy has a bad day or whatever, you'll come up totally empty-handed. Even pro teams in recent years have often tended toward having more than one guy who can win the race, because even if you have a designated Boonen, his chances and especially the team's chances go up a lot if you have a Devolder or a Chavanel who are extremely credible threats for the win to send up the road.

My previous team has been in this sort of situation in the TN championship RR last year, when we had one guy who could definitely win and then three more of us who were reasonably strong but very unlikely to have the staying power to have a real shot at the podium. So we chose to do everything we could to keep the race winnable for our guy, by keeping the chase of the lone breakaway going, chasing down attempted breaks, and so on. Maybe we made a difference there, maybe we didn't. But when a cluster f at the end of the race involving a downed Masters rider, an ambulance on the course and poor communication resulted in our guy getting a DQ for sprinting, we were screwed because none of the rest of us had had any legs to make the winning break. Of course, the winner was basically chosen by vote of the winning break rather than on the road (like I said, cluster f), but still. We were super proud of how we raced as a team, but we came up empty because we had only one bullet, and it misfired.
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Old 03-13-14, 03:54 PM   #8941
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Yesterday swam and took it easy on my commute.

Alviso today. That one Webcor guy who yelled at me about the puddle almost pushed me into the curb on a turn, and yelled at me for who-knows-why. I just decided to stay away from him. But then lo and behold, I WAS that sketchy guy later - apparently I cut off a guy on the inside of the turn coming around for the final sprint. Don't remember it because there was too much going on. We chatted on the way home, so I don't think he holds any grudges. Keep trying to think if I'm not taking the turns "correctly" but I'm just following the others... :/

2 hours total, 116 TSS, 0.95 IF for the 40' crit.
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Old 03-13-14, 03:58 PM   #8942
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Yesterday swam and took it easy on my commute.

Alviso today. That one Webcor guy who yelled at me about the puddle almost pushed me into the curb on a turn, and yelled at me for who-knows-why. I just decided to stay away from him. But then lo and behold, I WAS that sketchy guy later - apparently I cut off a guy on the inside of the turn coming around for the final sprint. Don't remember it because there was too much going on. We chatted on the way home, so I don't think he holds any grudges. Keep trying to think if I'm not taking the turns "correctly" but I'm just following the others... :/

2 hours total, 116 TSS, 0.95 IF for the 40' crit.
I get the impression that this "race" ride at Alviso is really sketchy.. I'm staying away!!
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Old 03-13-14, 04:04 PM   #8943
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Ha. My legs still look super white compared to the cali-boys around here.. my Seattle anti-tan is taking a long time to go away!!

A weekend in Walla Walla always did the tanlines well though.
I usually just need 1 or 2 slight burns and I get nice and dark. My farmers tan is fading and I need to keep the tan lines up. Walla Walla should help
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Old 03-13-14, 04:30 PM   #8944
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I get the impression that this "race" ride at Alviso is really sketchy.. I'm staying away!!
You gotta go there, win the jersey, and then never go back.

That Alviso "race" was 50% the reason I didn't end up on your team. Too many posts about who won the jersey.
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Old 03-13-14, 04:31 PM   #8945
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Yesterday swam and took it easy on my commute.

Alviso today. That one Webcor guy who yelled at me about the puddle almost pushed me into the curb on a turn, and yelled at me for who-knows-why. I just decided to stay away from him. But then lo and behold, I WAS that sketchy guy later - apparently I cut off a guy on the inside of the turn coming around for the final sprint. Don't remember it because there was too much going on. We chatted on the way home, so I don't think he holds any grudges. Keep trying to think if I'm not taking the turns "correctly" but I'm just following the others... :/

2 hours total, 116 TSS, 0.95 IF for the 40' crit.

bigger hulking AV dude, or smaller AV dude?
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Old 03-13-14, 05:09 PM   #8946
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I have to say that I think this is often the case, but I don't think it necessarily has to be. The main thing with having a real "Plan A" guy is that he has to have a demonstrated ability to get the job done. You can't be like "Joe is our leader for this race because he's skinny and seems pretty quick up the hills on team rides." That's a foolish call. On the other hand, if Joe has shown, repeatedly, that he's a contender in this sort of race, working specifically for his chance can be a reasonable call if the rest of the team is unsure that they have the legs to place well. But the downside of this approach is that it's super-vulnerable to chance. If events don't unfold right or Plan A Guy has a bad day or whatever, you'll come up totally empty-handed. Even pro teams in recent years have often tended toward having more than one guy who can win the race, because even if you have a designated Boonen, his chances and especially the team's chances go up a lot if you have a Devolder or a Chavanel who are extremely credible threats for the win to send up the road.

My previous team has been in this sort of situation in the TN championship RR last year, when we had one guy who could definitely win and then three more of us who were reasonably strong but very unlikely to have the staying power to have a real shot at the podium. So we chose to do everything we could to keep the race winnable for our guy, by keeping the chase of the lone breakaway going, chasing down attempted breaks, and so on. Maybe we made a difference there, maybe we didn't. But when a cluster f at the end of the race involving a downed Masters rider, an ambulance on the course and poor communication resulted in our guy getting a DQ for sprinting, we were screwed because none of the rest of us had had any legs to make the winning break. Of course, the winner was basically chosen by vote of the winning break rather than on the road (like I said, cluster f), but still. We were super proud of how we raced as a team, but we came up empty because we had only one bullet, and it misfired.
Last year we had a really strong kid who practically podiumed every single race as a 5 and a 4. When he became a 3, a handful of us old guy 3s just decided we'd work for the kid. I have no pretensions of every becoming a 2, but I could keep him out of the wind, chase down breaks, etc. and give the kid a chance to win in the 3s. Some of my most satisfying races were ones where I came in 47th (I did not sprint ), but the kid got on the podium. And by the end of the season, he was a 2 and got an offer to ride for a U23 development team. That was really fun.
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Old 03-13-14, 07:27 PM   #8947
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Imma not name names on my current team, but guys routinely suggest things like "keep the pace very hard and I'll hit the last kick/sprint" and then when we keep the pace hard they are dropped.

Whoops.

I don't think it's bad to suggest some basic tactics and roles, but expectations need to be realistic.
along the same lines, i've heard so many stories of "i kept the pace hard" (by a weaker guy who went to the front and didn't realize the guys on his wheel weren't suffering).

if we put the team thing aside for a sec, riders who would get dropped in a race if they were racing solo are probably of limited value other than in very specific circumstances.

i have observed some amazing team tactics during a 5-stage race in the 3s, once. it was quite impressive to watch it play out over days, as you rarely see it at that level.

in the end, people want to feel a part of something. if someone is not capable of the win/at least in the hunt, they want to feel like they did something to help the team. it makes sense because our egos need to help us find some reason to race week after week, to flog ourselves in training, to pass up the ice cream, etc., if we are not getting results in the races.

the reality in the lower categories is that often -- not always, but often -- the guy who won would have won with or without the "help" of the team.

(if someone is only into amateur cycling for race results, then there are probably bigger issues.)
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Old 03-13-14, 07:56 PM   #8948
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I'm not passing up the ice cream. I have my limits.
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Old 03-13-14, 08:50 PM   #8949
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legs felt like dead bricks today. I must've really kicked their arse yesterday.
Could not push through and deliver the goods on the short intervals today.

At least I managed to put down legit 5s power lol.
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Old 03-13-14, 10:30 PM   #8950
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25ish mile group ride with intermittent surging.
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