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Old 05-12-10, 06:40 AM
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I'd do the following, based on personal experience.

1. Lose weight. If you're not in reasonable shape, you gotta start here. You sound in reasonable shape since I raced at your weight to +10 lbs for a few years and you're 7" taller than me. But if you're carrying around some excess weight, you gotta get rid of what you can. Sacrifice training for weight loss - it's worth it. I didn't realize this for about 15 years.
2. Not sure of overall time of climb but do intervals that replicate that time. Repeat with shorter and shorter rest periods, until the rest period is similar to the amount of time you have between climbs at the race.
3. Work on field positioning and tactics. If you hit the climb very close to the front, you can trade position for speed. If you waste a lot of energy in the field you're handicapping yourself.
4. 53x19? If you don't want to buy a bigger cassette, buy a bigger small ring. I'm talking a 46 or something, so you can hit the hill hard. Or, as pointed out, get a bigger cassette. I regularly use a 53x21 (12-25 or 11-25). If you get the bigger small ring you can shift between the rings easier. But it's better to stay in the big ring and just avoid shifting the front at all.
5. Experiment with pacing. Sounds like you're going way too hard at the beginning, loading up your legs before you get to the turn. The lower you can keep your peak efforts, the easier the rest of the race will be. If I did a 1000 watt jump every lap of a crit I'd last about 3 laps. If I could tone it down to 700-800 watts, I can do 30 or more laps (because I have). If you can spin a bit and save something for the turn then you can drill it for that less steep part. If it's really bad you just have to suffer through it.

I don't know what race you're doing but that's what I would do if I had to do a race like that. My first approach would be to focus on the races where I can do better (sounds like first two races aren't as hilly). The 3rd race would be "do whatever" for me.

Hope this helps
carpediemracing is offline