Regarding caps: they work great in winter to help keep your head warm, or to keep a low sun out of your eyes. If you can't see in the drops, the brim can be flipped up, they're kinda designed to allow that. Even with a helmet on.
the ones I have, in order to flip the brim up you have to pull it way far forward, or your helmet way too high on your forehead.
they are just irritating to me. never quite right.
This is something I agree with. I really find the this whole thing about the trophy being a cheap cereal box prize sort of demeaning to the work of people who fight to come out on top.
This is probably why I find things like Triathalons so annoying. I hear so many people talk about "the race" when they really aren't racing, they are going to participate.
"if you ride it the way it's meant to be ridden there's no way any wife is less of a ***** than a bicycle." - gstein
Floyd Bennett Field Cat5 race today.
Last place, but I realize my weakness.
I spin way more than I should! Today was my 3rd race (Cat5), and I remember the moment I realized that I wasn't going to be able to finish with the group. It was the 2nd lap, and I was in the middle of the pack, noticing I was dropping back even though I was pedaling. Looked at the speed and realized I was doing 30mph, which just happens to be the fastest I've ever gone (not going downhill or drafting).
Anyways, one of the other racers told me I need to work on pushing bigger gears; I had the spinning part down, but being able to move bigger gears is what will make a huge difference. We rode back together and practiced keeping it in the smaller gears in the back (I was riding big ring up front the whole race).
Fun stuff though, this racing thing!
Cat 4. Final race of the season. Flattish road race, 75 miles.
Started off as a great race, all folks (16 of us) took an easy pace (20-22mph) and worked well together. About 30 miles in the group agreed to take a bathroom break much to the surprise of the moto ref. He said he'd never seen a group do that before.
Anyway, we had one solo break on the last lap after being neutralized. It took about 7-8 miles to pull him back in and we were a small happy group again. At about mile 71 of 72 we picked the pace up and started jockeying for position, all good. With about 800m to go a couple guys shifted hard to their right and two of us got shoved into the gravel shoulder. It took all I had not to go down and I was able to jump back out onto the road, but wasn't able to catch back on. The moto ref had some sympathy and gave me his wheel to chase back on, but the group was moving quick. No luck, coasted it in for who knows what place.
Not a great way to end the season. Feeling frustrated and a bit ticked off. Oh well, looking forward to actually training in the offseason and being more prepared for next year. This year I bought a bike, rode for a month, and started racing. Probably not a recipe for success.
I was told it was one of the toughest courses in TX. It was a 33 mile loop, and we only did 1 loop. The pack pretty much stayed together throughout, while some weaker riders were dropped after each climb. I was boxed in at 6 or 7th position with 1 km to go, so I hugged the left side to try to squeeze out, because there was a hard crosswind from the left, and the pack was hugging the right side of the road. Sure enough, just before the 200m mark, someone jumped from the left, and the left was open. I was feeling pretty good, and with the jump he already had 10 meters on me, so I didn't try to tail him, and just contested him, and ended up passing him at ~50m, and nailed the finish, with some left to spare. But I mean it was a cat 5 race, and we only did 1 loop. everyone else did 66 or 100 miles.
Day 2, U23 Race. I was chilling at the back of the pack before about 6 of us got dropped at the first big climb at mile 7. We picked up a few riders while pacelining to try to bridge, but I bailed at mile 16, because I couldn't hold it anymore. We were behind 400 meters at least when I dropped out, but apparently they nearly bridged in the end. I was probably holding them back, so I just enjoyed the sights. I mean ****, half of the guys in the field were high cat 1's. My friend told me the guy I was standing next to at the starting line was a pro. I had no chance. And it was raining
Below is more than you ever wanted to hear about the 66-mile Cat 4 Texas State Championship Road Race at Ft. Hood. Skip to the bottom for the TLDR.
The first 33-mile lap was pretty tame with no one wanting to really push the pace except for a couple guys that tried a VERY early break. At first I was cursing myself for being in bad position to be able to react but then realized there was a LOT of race left and with it only being 2 guys (and pretty windy) they were unlikely to stay away. Sure enough, they were re-absorbed into the pack after a short while. I stayed in the first 30-ish riders for most all of the first lap.
The feed zone was right after the start/finish and was pretty much the beginning of the real race. While some slowed for a bottle hand-up, many (like myself) accelerated through on the left side of the road and just moved a bottle from a back pocket to a frame cage. Glad my buddy suggested carrying a third bottle! I was originally planning to get a hand-up but that would have put me at a notable disadvantage.
The pace was noticeably higher after the feed zone and I focused on staying near the front to cover anything that looked promising. There were surges at each of the hills but nothing really got away. Well, 2 guys got away but I wasn't worried...the pack was ready to race now. At about mile 43, I caught up with my friend in the pack and we agreed to try a break at mile 48 which would be just before the last hill leading into a sharp corner and the long stretch into the wind. Was it a good plan? We wouldn't find out.
A break/chase of 8 appeared to be forming only a couple miles later and I thought that with a little organization, this could be the group to catch the 2 ahead and be the winning move. So I went for it. After chasing up, I found the group mostly disorganized with guys taking pretty long pulls considering the size of the group. I started barking orders, "Get to the front then pull off! Short pulls, guys! We've got 9 and we can stay away if we work smart! C'mon!" That seemed to do the trick. Once everybody got into a rhythm, we were really cooking and opened a good gap quickly. Man, I love getting into breaks.
We soon caught the 2 escapees who integrated back into our group. 11 strong now! This was it! Uh-oh...one guy popped. Sweet...I just need to ride this in and I've got a top-10 wrapped up! I wasn't feeling very fresh though. The hills, the surges, and not enough eating and drinking were beginning to take their toll. A couple guys were really strong as they came to the front and routinely gapped the group as everyone hustled to stay tight behind them. I told one guy to watch his pace as he came to the front and he probably interpreted that as, "Dude, you're stronger than everyone else here." That's how I would have interpreted it, anyway.
I eventually started to dangle off the back and even had to chase back on a couple times. I was popped at mile 54-ish, left to fight the wind and climb the hills alone. I knew this was NOT the stretch of road I wanted to get dropped on (is there even an ideal place to get dropped?) but I just couldn't keep the pace anymore. So I soldiered on solo for what seemed like an eternity, hoping my feeble effort to keep going would still let me finish ahead of whoever was chasing us. I had a good bit of time to myself out there. I was constantly fighting off the mind demons who constantly urged me to sit up and call it a day as I watched the gap between me and the podium grow and grow.
Finally, a chase group appeared on a horizon behind me and caught me at about mile 58. I dug in and integrated into the group, just trying to hold on until the end. I continued to struggle to stay with the group but luckily they weren't as organized as the lead group and guys were taking longer pulls (giving me more rest). They also scattered on every climb in kind of an "every man for himself" move. The surges up hills continued to sap any reserves I had left and I again found myself dangling off the back.
I was able to stay in contact until the 1k sign when the group started lighting fireworks. I pressed to stay within fighting distance of the stragglers ahead of me. At what I guessed was 100m before the 200m sign, I "launched" my "sprint." Screaming legs, quads and calves threatening to lock up, HR pulsing my eyeballs. I passed one guy..yes! Closing on another....boom! Looks like that's all I'll catch but I'm gonna keep going anyway in case someone in front of me has some drama. No luck. A little puke 50m from the line and I was done with my 2013 season.
I heard the winner solo'ed from 13 miles out. Bravo!
TLDR: First lap was pretty much neutral with the real race starting on lap 2. I got into/organized a break 45 miles into the 66-mile race that ended up being the winning move but I couldn't hang on. Got caught by a chase group and gutted it out for 20th place.
Great work reading that break, and organizing it.
Did you hear only like 10 guys finished the cat 1 race? I heard one guy finished his second lap and called it quits, sat in his car. Then he learned that if he finishes, he'd get a $45 prize. So he took off again and came back 2 hours later lol.