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shovelhd 03-04-13 09:18 AM

We had eight in the M45+. One guy got 4th overall and is in the points, but it is not the guy we want. So we will have some decisions to make next week. I have some ideas but it is not my call. I will make suggestions.

My fitness was very much a factor in what I was able to do out there. Hopefully there will be improvement this week so I will be able to do more without so much rest. I did get a lot of good work in, though. 65 times up the hill at 450w-600w for 8-12 seconds each is a good set of intervals, with a lot of recovery/pace/ftp/Vo2Max in between.

shovelhd 03-10-13 06:37 PM

Bethel M45+, high 40's, slight headwind sprint. I have no idea where I placed. It wasn't high. I was having too much fun kabitzing with friends at the end to go check.

Going into this week, we had two guys in the points, 4th and 6th. With no other riders in the points with strong team representation, this would be a good week to solidify that lead and get someone into the yellow jersey. We accomplished both. My role today was to mark, mark, mark, attack when it made sense, drill it when needed, and be around at the end for the team leader. I spent the first 10 laps or so marking anything that moved. Stuff would get up the road when I was resting. Then I would take to the front and help pull it back. I rested for a bit as it came down towards the end. At that point there was a solo rider out. Our guy with the highest points chased him down while we worked the front. They built up an 18 second lead. With two to go I was setting up to lead out the team leader. The field had slowed and started to bunch up. He was afraid of the attacks so he told me to go to the front and drill it. I rolled up the left side and took off amidst a bit of yelling and screaming. I am pretty well marked around here. I went just hard enough to be able to stay out for a lap on the front (0.8 mi.) and string everything out as planned. My team leader came up to me afterward and said that hurt. I said, "Yeah, it did". He said "No, that hurt ME". Mission accomplished. I recovered as much as I could and gave it all I had left for the sprint. The end result was our guy won the race in the two up break and our team leader won the field sprint. We have the yellow jersey and a solid team lead. Next week is going to be interesting.

P/1/2/3. I felt much better this week going into this race and I thought I would be able to meet my goals of beating the crap out of myself. Orders from the coach were to take a flyer. I rolled with the group for a bit while a small group was up the road. I was at the front when the field slowed for the hill and drilled it, taking one rider with me. We stayed out for a lap or so but he wasn't that strong and I am still not in good enough shape to go it alone. A good interval, though. For the rest of the race, I stayed near the front for the most part, hoping to help out our young Cat2 at the end. A break was up the road but they were in sight. I drilled it again. This time a bunch of riders came with me and we strung it out, getting things close enough for a bridge effort. He decided not to bridge. At that point I just hung on to the finish giving it all I had left at the end.

I'm still not where I want to be but I am getting closer. This was a good week for fitness. I know some people don't put much stake in numbers, but if I look at my ATL at this time last year, and today, it's really close. I don't feel as good as I did this time last year, but it's pretty close. I have a rest week coming up.

Cleave 03-11-13 07:59 AM

Fun times in CT. Getting your fit dialed in?

Hermes 03-11-13 08:18 AM

Nice Shove. Great team work. Riding OFT and AFT with the P/1/2/3 is awesome - not easy to do.

shovelhd 03-11-13 08:42 AM

Thanks. The fit is close but still not perfect, although I seem to be adjusting to it. I am thinking about a fit session.

sarals 03-11-13 08:47 AM

Nice work, Shovel! It's great to be strong enough and in position to help the team. Good stuff!!

wanders 03-11-13 06:38 PM

Thanks for the report shovel. I was looking for it in the wrong place yesterday. Like sarals said, really good stuff.

shovelhd 03-17-13 07:06 PM

Bethel M45+. 32 degrees, stiff headwind on the backstretch, 9th place. A popular NYC race was cancelled for today so we had an influx of riders not normally seen around here. My guess on the field size was between 75-90. Coming off a rest week, I wanted to sit in for a bit and then pour it on in the second half. However, one of our riders crashed yesterday and wasn't expected to show. He surprised me when he lined up next to me on a backup bike after getting four stitches in his leg. So the race goes off fast as usual with me and the team leader near the front. About five laps in a group goes off with some very strong riders. I look around and there's nobody else up there, so I had to scrap my plan and chase. They were back within two laps. A little later a big group, almost a mini split occurred, so I chased on. It was too unorganized so it fell apart after a few laps. I certainly didn't help them at all. Attacks kept the speeds up throughout. With 5 to go I made my way up as far as I could get, about third row. With two to go Stitches drills it for a lap and falls off the back. This strings it out until a half a lap to go where it mushrooms into the headwind. I maintain my 3rd row as I just did not trust my fitness to push to the front and still sprint. Around turn four everything opens up, and I drill it. I passed three guys on the hill to finish ninth. I am just fine with that at this point in the season with my delayed training start. I have been working hard with my coach to dig myself out of this hole physically and mentally and it is starting to pay off.

P/1/2/3, 36 degrees, even stiffer headwind, in the field. I'm just not in good enough shape to do much of anything in this race except ride around and maybe take a flyer. There was no flyer in the cards today. About halfway through I started to fade significantly and found myself on the back, at risk of going off. I sat up, ate a gel, swished it down with some Gatorade and pushed myself back into the middle of the field. I made my way up to the front a few times, but the pace was tolerable as several guys went at the gun and lapped the field. I thought the Masters race was harder because of this. Anyway, coming into the sprint I was somewhere in the middle of the field when two riders went down about 50m in front of me. I juked and jived and dodged all the debris and carried my speed to the line to just finish up safely.

The team leader is now the series leader. The previous series leader is now our second guy on the podium. Hopefully I can work my way onto the podium before the end. The team competition is pretty solidly in our wheelhouse.

AzTallRider 03-17-13 07:29 PM

That's one hell of a good result in the 45+, Shovel. Around here, 45+ is usually the second fastest field, and with that huge a field... nice going.

shovelhd 03-17-13 07:48 PM

Thanks AZT. My best ever at Bethel was 4th, off the front. The M45+ field today was 80 riders, 93 in the P/1/2/3.

sarals 03-17-13 07:56 PM

Pretty darned fantastic, Shovel! You had 85 guys behind you, that's MORE than respectable, in my estimation. How was the bike fit?

shovelhd 03-17-13 08:06 PM

The bike fit was the best so far. I want to do some more road rides and races before touching it again. That is going to be tough with snow coming on Tuesday.

VanceMac 03-18-13 08:56 AM


Originally Posted by shovelhd (Post 15398488)
Bethel M45+. I passed three guys on the hill to finish ninth.

P/1/2/3 coming into the sprint I was somewhere in the middle of the field when two riders went down about 50m in front of me. I juked and jived and dodged all the debris and carried my speed to the line to just finish up safely.

The team leader is now the series leader. The previous series leader is now our second guy on the podium. Hopefully I can work my way onto the podium before the end. The team competition is pretty solidly in our wheelhouse.

Awesome double. I may have missed this, but with two guys jockeying for series lead like that, is there any tension as to who is working for whom? I guess since you call him "team leader" probably not.

shovelhd 03-18-13 10:01 AM

Oh yeah. There can be a good bit of drama. It's one of the reasons one guy was let go and I was recruited so heavily. They know I am a team player who knows how to race. As a team we are still a work in progress. We could be better. I have been voicing my opinions whenever I can. At this point there are three of us on the same page, and so far that's all that has been needed.

Cleave 03-19-13 08:26 AM

Fun times when teamwork succeeds.

I ride better when there is some kind of team objective versus just hoping that one of us does well or that none of us gets dropped.

shovelhd 03-24-13 06:28 PM

Bethel M45+, 41 degrees, stiff N/NW wind 15-30mph, 15th place. With our team leader in yellow, our 50+ strong guy in second, but with only a few points on the challengers, today was going to be a day dedicated 100% to the team no matter what. I had a great day of openers yesterday with a nice sign of early form. I offered to target the top three challengers and crush myself to keep them from getting up the road. I honestly don't remember a lot of the details. I did pretty much everything that was needed for the first 3/4 of the race. Stayed up front. Marked the three riders. Pulled back breaks by setting tempo into the headwind. Bridged gaps to early breaks and shut them down. A few of the other teammates pitched in as well. We worked like a well oiled machine. With about 10 laps to go and me resting, a group of two got up the road a bit. Our #2 guy bridged while I shut the front down. He would end up second. However, there were challengers in the break. A couple cooked off, but it still left two dangerous riders. Coming into the sprint, I was in good position and ready to jump early to lead out our leader when I got jostled on the preferred right side. I had no choice but to back off and swing left, and that was it. Our leader took second in the field sprint because it was too long for him. The end result, our #2 is now in yellow, our leader is tied for second, the team competition is baked and ready to eat. I was hoping that we could work on getting me on the podium when we return in two weeks but it looks like it's going to be a repeat of today.

P/1/2/3 DFL but I finished. The race was stupid fast from the get-go. My legs were pretty thrashed from the Masters race but after a few laps and some hard efforts I was back in the swing of things. I got up the road in an early 6 man break but it was too disorganized, and I didn't have the stink to organize it for more than two pulls. I bridged to a second break a bit later but no dice. Then the prime bells started ringing and the race strung out. With the wind it caused gaps to happen every lap throughout the field and I found myself chasing a bit too much. I would bridge, recover, and have to bridge again. Eventually I found myself sitting in the last ten riders in the field and a gap opened ahead of me. It was too far to bridge, and the rest gave up. I am not one to quit a race so I kept going. I spent a lot of quality time riding in the speed bars and in the IAB in crosswinds to get used to the effort. I kept plugging along, looking back once per lap for the field. The break caught me, then the field, but the officials let me stay in. So I gave it all I had to stay in the field a second time. With 5 to go another gap opened 3 riders up and I was OTB again. Of course, they gave up. I kept on going as the officials had no desire to pull me. They caught me on the bell lap about 500m out. I swung wide to let them pass and stayed behind them long enough to watch our team leader take 8th in the field sprint. Checking the results, more than half the field was blown off the back. Tough race. Good training. I'm shattered. Shadoobee.

Next week I take a break from the Bethel series and go to Rhode Island on Saturday to do a pair of M50+ and M40+ races. I got 2nd in the M50+ last year OTF with another rider after we put over a minute on the field. Today was good work for that.

sarals 03-24-13 07:14 PM

Nice, nice work, Shovel. It's fun reading your reports, and it's even more fun feeling through them how much fun (and satisfaction) you're having. Strong work, my friend!

AzTallRider 03-24-13 08:37 PM

Your team is lucky to have you, Shovel. Great work.

nacler22 03-24-13 09:04 PM

Hermes 03-25-13 10:38 AM

Nice racing Shovel.

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