Go Back  Bike Forums > The Racer's Forum > "The 33"-Road Bike Racing
Reload this Page >

Am I physically ready to attempt my first cat 5 crit?

Notices
"The 33"-Road Bike Racing We set this forum up for our members to discuss their experiences in either pro or amateur racing, whether they are the big races, or even the small backyard races. Don't forget to update all the members with your own race results.

Am I physically ready to attempt my first cat 5 crit?

Old 03-15-17, 06:43 AM
  #251  
Senior Member
 
himespau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 13,525
Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4166 Post(s)
Liked 2,882 Times in 1,760 Posts
himespau is offline  
Old 03-15-17, 10:07 AM
  #252  
staring at the mountains
 
superdex's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Castle Pines, CO
Posts: 4,560

Bikes: Obed GVR, Fairdale Goodship, Salsa Timberjack 29

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 394 Post(s)
Liked 197 Times in 112 Posts
congrats, that's a great result for first time out (or any, really)









(am I the only one a little sad it wasn't a 3-lap puke-n-drop? ok, seriously, all that hard work paid off, you're off and running now, nice job )
superdex is offline  
Old 03-15-17, 10:09 AM
  #253  
**** that
 
mattm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: CALI
Posts: 15,402
Mentioned: 151 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1099 Post(s)
Liked 104 Times in 30 Posts
Originally Posted by superdex
am I the only one a little sad it wasn't a 3-lap puke-n-drop?
Nope - we all want to see beginners struggle, to validate how awesome us salty vets are!
__________________
cat 1.

my race videos
mattm is offline  
Old 03-15-17, 10:15 AM
  #254  
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 40,865

Bikes: Specialized Tarmac, Canyon Exceed, Specialized Transition, Ellsworth Roots, Ridley Excalibur

Mentioned: 68 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2952 Post(s)
Liked 3,105 Times in 1,417 Posts
Originally Posted by mattm
nope - we all want to see beginners struggle, to validate how awesome us salty vets are!
q.f.t.
caloso is offline  
Old 03-15-17, 11:00 AM
  #255  
Senior Member
 
miyata man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,187
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 243 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Congrats, didn't see this until after posting in the other thread. Sounds like you are just strong enough to dictate your own involvement and recover if something doesn't work, but not ITT'ing off the front strong.

Last edited by miyata man; 03-15-17 at 05:19 PM.
miyata man is offline  
Old 03-17-17, 08:06 AM
  #256  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
My friend (the winner) his vid of the race.
Radish_legs is offline  
Old 03-17-17, 09:52 AM
  #257  
Senior Member
 
miyata man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,187
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 243 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Where's Waldo looks a little stretched out in the drops. Pretty good at hiding except for those bright red and white striped socks being so easy to pick out.
miyata man is offline  
Old 03-21-17, 08:29 PM
  #258  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
Report on 2nd Race (Same crit, week #2)

Team C had about 11 riders in a field of about 30. I knew they would dictate the race. Early on Team C guy went, my friend who won last week followed him. I sat and waited. Then another team C guy went and I followed his wheel hoping for a free ride to the break. It didn't work out that way, I ended up doing a lot of the work to catch the two guys and in the process we had a group of about 7. After a lap of that, I was cooked and having trouble with gaps opening up. So I made the decision to abandon the break. And I floated back to the group and sat in with the group. Team C was on the front, covering anyone trying to bridge and soft-pedaling. Yes, there are team tactics in the C race. I recovered in the group and felt fine. It crossed my mind that I might try to animate the race by a bridging attempt over the last mile, but I knew that would be sacrificing myself just for grins. So I sat in. Pack finish with a small sprint at the end.

What did I learn? I don't have the fitness to dictate this race. I did too much work catching the break. 303 watts for 5:50 near the beginning of the race was what cooked me. But I didn't go ALL the way into the red. I should have tried to hold on for just a little longer and the break I think did slow down.

So a fun race and some lessons learned.
Radish_legs is offline  
Old 03-21-17, 08:32 PM
  #259  
Senior Member
 
hack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Folsom, CA
Posts: 3,888
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 417 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Blowing up isn't bad if you learned from it. Maybe next time be one of the hanger-ons during the bridge effort or once you get across skip a couple pulls and contribute once you're recovered.
hack is offline  
Old 03-22-17, 08:53 AM
  #260  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
Video of Race #2 from the perspective of the winner. Gonna look at it later to see how much work I did in bridging (and blowing up).

Radish_legs is offline  
Old 03-22-17, 10:09 AM
  #261  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Music City, USA
Posts: 4,444

Bikes: bikes

Mentioned: 52 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2622 Post(s)
Liked 1,429 Times in 711 Posts
Originally Posted by Radish_legs
I should have tried to hold on for just a little longer and the break I think did slow down.

Got blown out of two breaks last year and the exact same thought gnawed at me for days after each. But in the end, if you can't roll with it, you can't. Look for the next one! It'll come!
rubiksoval is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 08:27 AM
  #262  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
Race #3.

This was my first time to try the "premier" crit in the area. And my first time to do a crit with 90 degree turns. Frankly it was really easy to sit in on this crit. The watts were low. I briefly went off the front with 2 guys, but the field quickly got to us. There was some confusion as to when the last lap was, as they were ringing the bell 3 other times for primes. But I knew it was the last lap. I miscalculated and got boxed in when I should have moved up. I got to the side, and moved up, but later than I wanted. So in the 2nd to last turn I was further back than I cared to be, maybe 7th? This is a finish line just after the last turn. So getting to the front before that turn is critical, in order to win. Again I tried to move up on the outside line, got pushed outside a little. Started spinning out, remembered oh yeah, I need to shift gears. Just generally screwed up the sprint. I thought I got 4th, but I was clipped at the line apparently by a few hundredths. So ended up with 5th. I guess one thing I learned was that I am not good at changing gears while sprinting in the drops and out of the saddle. When I shift, I want my butt on the seat. I feel like I can't be stable out of the saddle and shifting at the same time. Any advice for this?

ADDENDUM: The other notable thing for this race was that it felt sketchy. If this had been a group ride, it would have been the sketchiest group ride I have ever done. This was the first time I had a forearm into me, and also my forearm into someone else. A junior rider almost went down in front of me in a straightaway for no discernible reason. There have been several crashes in this C race since the season started. I think as an older rider, I start to question my sanity a little bit doing this.

Last edited by Radish_legs; 04-07-17 at 08:46 AM.
Radish_legs is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 08:37 AM
  #263  
Senior Member
 
himespau's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 13,525
Mentioned: 33 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4166 Post(s)
Liked 2,882 Times in 1,760 Posts
Sounds like you're learning a lot. Knowing characteristics of the course, when to go, when to make sure you have the ability to go, remembering to shift...That's what beginning is all about.
himespau is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 09:42 AM
  #264  
Senior Member
 
topflightpro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 7,566
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1851 Post(s)
Liked 673 Times in 426 Posts
RL - Two things for shifting when sprinting.

1. Shift before you really need to.
2. If you are mid sprint, time the shift to the NDS downstroke. That seems to work well for me.
topflightpro is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 11:23 AM
  #265  
Senior Member
 
aaronmcd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: SF, CA
Posts: 3,462

Bikes: Cervelo S5, Marin Gestalt X11

Mentioned: 71 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 554 Post(s)
Liked 65 Times in 45 Posts
Originally Posted by topflightpro
RL - Two things for shifting when sprinting.

1. Shift before you really need to.
2. If you are mid sprint, time the shift to the NDS downstroke. That seems to work well for me.
Is there a reason to shift on the left? I tend to shift as my right is coming over the top, so right leg down stroke is in the new gear. But it's just habit I guess
aaronmcd is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 11:39 AM
  #266  
Senior Member
 
topflightpro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 7,566
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1851 Post(s)
Liked 673 Times in 426 Posts
Originally Posted by aaronmcd
Is there a reason to shift on the left? I tend to shift as my right is coming over the top, so right leg down stroke is in the new gear. But it's just habit I guess
No, I just find that when I am up out-of-the-saddle sprinting, if I time my shift to when the down stroke of the left leg, it shifts smoother.

I have no idea why that is, just that experience has shown me it works.
topflightpro is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 01:45 PM
  #267  
Senior Member
 
miyata man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,187
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 243 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
What your drivetrain is, electronic groups just jam it in whenever wherever, and where the ramps and pins are located on your crank decide where in your pedal stroke is ideal to a small extent. Where during the ramp up in cadence can vary but is probably more important.

Beyond that you just need to throw in a @carpediemracing and await a full answer. I'll give you a hint, it is going to involve leg speed and saving yourself for one humongous max power effort.

Last edited by miyata man; 04-07-17 at 04:13 PM.
miyata man is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 01:46 PM
  #268  
Nonsense
 
TheKillerPenguin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Vagabond
Posts: 13,918

Bikes: Affirmative

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 880 Post(s)
Liked 541 Times in 237 Posts
When I sprint I feel like I'm having a stroke.
TheKillerPenguin is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 01:49 PM
  #269  
Senior Member
 
miyata man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,187
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 243 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Medical emergency or self destruction?

If any, what would be the benefit of doing a fairly large chunk of time at not-so-sweet-spot, ie between Zone 2.8 and 3.2? I found myself drawn to doing a fairly steady state effort at a cadence around 100 there today.
miyata man is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 01:54 PM
  #270  
Ninny
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: The Gunks
Posts: 5,295
Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 686 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
One thing electronic shifting is really, really, really, really good for is making it easy to shift while sprinting. With mechanical shifting it takes some practice to figure out how to actually execute a shift during a full sprint, much less time the shift.
globecanvas is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 04:03 PM
  #271  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
Originally Posted by globecanvas
One thing electronic shifting is really, really, really, really good for is making it easy to shift while sprinting. With mechanical shifting it takes some practice to figure out how to actually execute a shift during a full sprint, much less time the shift.


I hadn't even thought of electronic shifting.


Gripping the drops with full force and reaching and pushing the lever for the gear shift -- it's a challenge for me, because it's like I have to change my grip in order to shift. So my stability is gone, and I feel like I need my butt on the seat to be stable, as I am at 115 cadence or whatever.
Radish_legs is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 04:20 PM
  #272  
Senior Member
 
miyata man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,187
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 243 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Are your wrists hitting the top of the bar sprinting out of the saddle in the drops? That is bad.

You might find throwing the bike to the left side a bit more than normal gives you that split second of natural shifting movement with your right hand.
miyata man is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 05:04 PM
  #273  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 631
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 141 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Originally Posted by Radish_legs
I guess one thing I learned was that I am not good at changing gears while sprinting in the drops and out of the saddle. When I shift, I want my butt on the seat. I feel like I can't be stable out of the saddle and shifting at the same time. Any advice for this?
Practice.
gl98115 is offline  
Old 04-07-17, 06:42 PM
  #274  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Tariffville, CT
Posts: 15,395

Bikes: Tsunami road bikes, Dolan DF4 track

Mentioned: 36 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 383 Post(s)
Liked 173 Times in 97 Posts
Originally Posted by Radish_legs
Gripping the drops with full force and reaching and pushing the lever for the gear shift -- it's a challenge for me, because it's like I have to change my grip in order to shift. So my stability is gone, and I feel like I need my butt on the seat to be stable, as I am at 115 cadence or whatever.
First, when under duress, you lose fine motor control. This is why law enforcement uses such high trigger springs, vs the competition ones. This avoids accidental discharges in tense situations.

So you need to adjust things so you can shift hard while sprinting. I have my levers such that I can shift without moving my hands from my sprint position in the drops.

Sprinter della Casa: How To - Bar End Shifters for Crits

With Campy the nicer levers have the "dump" feature, where you can upshift 3-4 gears at one time. I found that once the shifter broke in a bit (not super stiff) I'd frequently shift up 2 gears instead of 1. For my latest two lever sets I purposely bought lower end Campy shifters that only shift one gear up at a time. This way I can hit the shift button as hard as I want and it won't shift more than once. Shimano and SRAM should be pretty straightforward. I find I can't use Shimano as I often inadvertently brake when I shift. I've never tried to go to SRAM.

I always shift as I get into the power downstroke on my right/dominant side. I want to be pushing down on the pedals hard as the chain goes into the next cog. I don't want the chain shifting when at the top of the pedal stroke.

When I sprint I always sprint in the drops. I'll do some jumps here and there on training rides. If I'm riding super easy, or am super fatigued, horsing around before a group ride, etc, I'll do slow motion sprints, where I'm pedaling maybe 20-30 rpm in a biggish gear at maybe 10-15 mph.

I usually practice bike throws at the same time, pretending to sprint in slow motion to a line 20 or 30 feet away from me.

In an ideal training ride sprint I could do multiple peak jumps, hitting 1400, 1300, 1200w in three shifts (first peak is always as I shift so if I have three peaks I've shifted three times). In races I've rarely gotten more than two solid peaks (1200w). However I focus a bit more on sustaining the sprint, and I usually put down more power over 20s than I do in training.
__________________
"...during the Lance years, being fit became the No. 1 thing. Totally the only thing. It’s a big part of what we do, but fitness is not the only thing. There’s skills, there’s tactics … there’s all kinds of stuff..." Tim Johnson
carpediemracing is offline  
Old 04-12-17, 01:15 PM
  #275  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Radish_legs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 58 Times in 30 Posts
Race #4


I still haven't set up my bars for sprinting. Just seems like a big task with new bar tape and moving the shifters, and perhaps even shifting the angle of my bars.


Race #4 is the same crit as races #1 and #2 where I finished 2nd and 9th respectively. This time the field was a little smaller, and some of the more quality racers not in the field. I almost skipped this race because of the 106 miles 20+mph ride I did on Saturday. TSS lingers in the legs at my age. But I figured it was better to get a race in to get closer to upgrading to 4, no matter the outcome.


Lots of juniors and some women in the field, so it did feel like an obstacle course at times. I didn't have a strategy really. I figured if a dangerous breakaway were to go, I would try to follow. Otherwise I was comfortable with a pack finish. I had no teammates on the ride. The race felt slow and lazy for the most part. I was very much trying to conserve my energy and stay out of the wind. This course is more like an oval loop than a rectangle, so positioning versus the wind is an issue. But I was feeling very comfortable with the pace. Trying to stay near the front.


A Team C rider made a push, and I was quickly on his wheel. Later a Team P rider made a jump, another guy followed (see, this time I waited for someone to make the jump), and I go on his wheel. For a short time the 3 of us had a gap, but me and the second rider never went to the front, so the pack was back on us.


There was a prime lap and I thought it could be dangerous if someone sprinted into a breakaway. As I was not at the front. But that didn't happen. The group came back together.


The pace felt so slow that I thought a breakaway could be something I might reasonably attempt or initiate. But I just waited. I had 2 guys in mind I wanted to mark (the ones I mentioned). The pace started to quicken in the last 3 laps. By the last lap, I wanted to make sure I was in prime position. I was about 3rd wheel. At the 2nd to last "turn" (it's like a 45 degree turn) I saw the lead person gapping the 2nd wheel, so I divebombed the corner on the inside line to get to 2nd wheel. And then I was trying to figure out the timing of my jump. I think I was late, hard to think about the timing in the heat of the moment. But a guy surged past me (the guy I knew was my main rival). I jumped, but I could not get his wheel. The two of us far out-paced the rest of the field, and I finished 2nd. I talked to him afterward, he had been on my wheel the entire last part of the lap and had jumped from my wheel. This is a guy whom I had placed higher than in my first race. But who had been 2nd place the week before (I wasn't in that race). Strong rider, but someone I could reasonably expect to beat in a sprint.


So this whole sprinting thing remains a challenge for me. When to go, how to go, how to shift, how to jump. How to position myself going into the sprint. Was it wise to be so far in the front? I'm finding that when someone goes if they get a reasonable gap it's VERY hard to close it in the last 15 seconds.


So I've had 2 podiums in 4 crit races. A friend tells me that I can go ahead and apply for an early upgrade to Cat 4. So I'm considering that. I'd never heard of early upgrades to 4 before yesterday. But that will give me the opportunity to sit in on the B race and try to collect some points towards 3.
Radish_legs is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.