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Old 06-25-19, 12:37 PM
  #17  
tpower
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Originally Posted by JeffOYB View Post
I spose all my stuff will be obvious...

I've done a couple dozen CX races now. I guess I'm getting faster. I keep moving up groups. Our Mich fields are like 30-50 in size. My goal is to be among the most riders. I don't care if I move back as I move up if I'm getting more awesome competition. I love love love battling -- passing back n forth. So now I'm an old man in the middle of the 3's. I found the old man field wasn't big enough.

I used to find myself going under but not anymore. Don't know why. I think I've figured out how to go max the whole time. I don't ever back off and so I don't think I ever get the idea to go harder than I should. When you red-line the whole time it might be harder to over-red-line. Maybe I'm just less fit...

I try to practice like a half hour a day. I prolly ride 50 miles a week. If I do a better summer road season w a couple fast club rides per week then I'd be monster for cross.

Practice with riders who are better than you. Hopefully the practice course is good and like a race course so you can short cut it when you get dropped and catch on elsewhere. Try to hang w good riders for ANY amount of time, then work on extending that.

Getting to know a course from pre-riding is impt. But being able to do a race-pace effort in a pre-ride really lets you know what features will be like. And it's kinda hard to go that hard until the race. But try to do it. Also it's hard to get in a rhythm during a pre-ride -- you'll want to go easy on the straights so you can hit the features at race-pace. Yet you don't want to use-up your strength. So save race-pace for education and for just getting to the perfectly ready state. I really want a warm-up to get me to race-ready -- meaning I want to be sweated and hot like I'm in the middle of a race when my race starts. That's a good way to have a fast start. This explains all the rollers! You only want to go fast on the course in a pre-ride to learn what to do. You can get the body ready on rollers. So the pre-riding has 3 purposes: learn the facts of the course, learn the race-pace lines, get you hot.

Keep your weight ON your front wheel. Bent elbows and in the drops helps. Then you can corner.

Good tires, proper treads, soft when it's bumpy or offcamber. I glean for tires. So now I have an awesome set of filetreads! When it's dry hardpack grassy I only use those. Much faster. Free places!

Ideally you should always move up on people during features, corners -- esp if you're midpack. If ppl are gapping you then, you're prolly making glaring mistakes.

NO MECHANICALS!!! Make sure every part of your system is solid and dialed WAY before a race. Clothes, shoes, cleats, pedals, everything! No excuses about wrong shoes for conditions. NO EXCUSES! Be prepared! I had a great race, was doing so awesome, gonna podium, then my feet started freezing solid. I screwed up my shoes! It was snowy, raining, muddy -- PERFECT! But I only used a baggie over each sock. I shoulda added toe-warmer-packs and overbooties. Also SPDs will clog and spoil your race -- know your gear! I just switched to Eggbeaters finally -- 2 good races lost to SPDs. No more! (I hear that Candies are the better Eggs.) I also just was having a great race -- but dropped my chain TWICE. I think my chain is too long. I will check soon and adjust to prevent such idiocy. ...Don't get any flats or pinchflats or roll any tires! I've ruined at least 2 races due to rolled tires -- dummy!

I often like doing TWO RACES in a day -- now that's a way to learn a course. Of course the course changes. But you'll learn. I get frustrated when at some point I'm really chasing, etc., and go thru a corner faster than usual and it works fine -- that tells me I've been going way too slow all the other times. At least from then on I know that faster is fine. The sooner you learn the top speed you can do in a corner, the better! It's good to push it until you slide in a way that line and body position can't repair -- that's the limit.

It's probably smart to get a license and do what it takes for points to register, and to register for races on the first day you can -- to get the best starting position you can. This really matters. I've mostly screwed up in this regard. I only do 5 races tops, that's $50 in day-of fees. $70 for license? It's worth an extra $20 for the seeding. Registering early is a free way to move up. ...But I always get a bad cold at some point that nukes a few races unpredictably. UGH.

How about: try not to get sick! ...Everybody is different but start w all the basics: don't go to any little kid birthday parties in the later summer or fall. Ha! Just be careful. Also find your special tricks.
5 sentences lol.
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