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Race Report 7/24

Old 07-25-07, 09:43 PM
  #1  
CrimsonKarter21
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Race Report 7/24

More than 2 months since my last mass-start race, I did another.
Every Tuesday for the past 20+ years there's been a training crit a few cities away from me, but I never got around to doing them this year because of either not racing, working or forgetting. I finally asked my boss if I could get off work early to race and I got permission.

I wanted to get there at 6:00pm, but ended up 10 minutes late and got no warmup or stretches in, I only hydrated myself and did small circles in a parking lot. The race is in a industrial parkway with 4 right hand 90 turns and some sweeping curves, all flat. 14 laps was about 35-36 miles with sprints every other lap. The winner got series points, and on the final sprint the first three positions got points.
The field I was in was a pretty good sized group, about 12-14 people, not too many and not too little. We did a neutral start after doing a slow, easy lap, that's where I got my warmup in.
For the first few laps I took it easy and sat on peoples wheels, and took a few short pulls for the group. Whoever broke away from the group, I chased and brought them back (since I was playing domestique for my coach/teammate who is in contention for the series and in second)
I finally was able to take advantage of all of the sprint training I've been doing lately and was faster than most all of the guys gunning for the sprints, it's just that I had bad timing or bad positioning. In the second sprint, the winner took off early and I was boxed in for a split second and gunned it, and finished with my front axle level with his rear and gaining. Surprisingly, my max speed of the race was only 34 mph.
After a points lap, I was chatting with my coach and he said "Mitch, you wasted a lot of energy going for that last sprint, you were out of contention by a long ways." to which I replied, "Tony, I'm just here to have fun". I really do hope that everyone heard that. Coming to a crit and outsprinting the vast majority and calling it "fun".

With 3 laps to go, on a sprint lap, a breakaway group successfully took off and took the sprint, and left the main pack 300m+ behind, which my coach asked me if I wanted to bridge the gap. Following his orders to get him in the best possible position, I picked the pace up to 30mph and caught the break in a half a lap after leading the entire way. I signalled for the group to pass once we were within 50 meters of the break, and took it easy by myself for a little bit.
I thought I was spent for the rest of the race.
Slowly, the main group crept away from me while I was still pacing myself, and put on what I reckon to be 400-450m (judging by the meter marks on the sprint straight, I can't be sure) on me and four other riders who were behind me, but just out of my draft; about 7 bike lengths back, three were from one team, and the other was an individual.
After another half lap of being dormant, I got pissed (seriousely, I was screaming) and sprinted for the pack, and pulled the group behind me to them in three quarters of a lap. One of the riders drafting me decided to pass me and take a pull going into a curve, and gave me enough motivation to go faster and I pulled harder.
Thanks to me (and not to be cocky: me alone) two bridges were gapped.
We caught the group before the last turn going onto the sprint straight just in time for the final sprint. I yelled for my teammate to take the points (since I'd sacrificed enough for him) and I flew past everyone who didn't go for the win so I could see the finish.

In the end, my coach came in 4th, just out of the points. And during the cool-down lap I realized how good I actually felt, I have no doubt that I could have raced agian.

And after the race when i was packing up, there were some other racers mear my car talking about the race, one said to his friend "How the Hell did you bridge that last gap?", his friend said casually, "Well, that guy right there [me] pulled us the entire way and it went pretty fast." I waved to them, and got a few "Good race"'s from a bunch of guys.
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Old 07-25-07, 11:05 PM
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Vinokurtov
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Having fun are we?

Nice.
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Old 07-26-07, 07:21 AM
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waterrockets 
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Sounds like fun. Good work.

FWIW: if was going to bridge to a break, I'd attack and go by myself, and not bring the pack with me. Did you guys have a miscommunication, or did he really mean it as "reel the break in?"
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Old 07-26-07, 07:31 AM
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Good Work, sounds like you need to talk to your boss about some more time off.
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Old 07-26-07, 07:24 PM
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CrimsonKarter21
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
Sounds like fun. Good work.

FWIW: if was going to bridge to a break, I'd attack and go by myself, and not bring the pack with me. Did you guys have a miscommunication, or did he really mean it as "reel the break in?"
Yes, he meant to reel in the break away, it was getting to the point where nobody was making a move on them, and the break was just gaining ground on us. The second time was an accident pulling those other riders, they somehow matched my early sprint and then got behind me to draft. I didn't mind because none of them were in the mental state I was in to mix up the results.

And yes, it was a total blast, even during the race I felt awesome, I wasn't really in pain, it was more like a type of nirvana where I can go as fast as possible and bring myself to my regular breaking-point, but still have energy is re-coup and attack again. I'm glad to be racing crits again, but I still like TT's and track better.

Unfortunately, my racing plans this weekend with a double header in the Columbus aera fell through. I didn't have enough time to take off of work, and last night I went to see my great-grandma on her deathbed, and I'm going to her funeral on Saturday. She was 98 and has been wanting to go.
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Old 07-26-07, 08:45 PM
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Ouch. Sorry for your loss. You were lucky to know her though -- great-grandmas are rare in the adult years. Enjoy the memories and ensuing family reunion
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