Monday, April 30, 2012

Catching up…

Since I got bashed for being too wordy on the last post… I will keep this short. Well, at least for each individual race.

Waterford/AAVC training races:
It was good to get out and hammer a little on the road bike to test the legs. Waterford went pretty well, nothing too exciting as I just sat in for the most part as I wanted to practice positioning. I rode up from home thanks to a little motivation from Adam York, which was a good warm up. It was quite the urban adventure. The race went well and I never felt in distress. I was about 10th wheel through the S at the end, didn’t have to check the brakes (This was a first) and sprinted to a 4th place finish. Rode home with another group that came up to watch, it was nice to have a little company and a larger group to be more visible.

AAVC was fast and furious with Rainman constantly attacking… I wanted to just sit in, but found myself chasing a lot. There was a wreck at the first corner on the first or second lap, which always makes you think a little. I stayed towards the front, but had nothing for the uphill sprint and finished in the pack for 18th.

Yankee TT:
I was pretty excited for this race as it would be my first SS race. I rode 3 laps the week before, so I felt I had a pretty good feel for the trail. My warm up went good and my legs were ready to go. I preregistered early so I had a reasonable starting position. I felt good from the start and managed my efforts well. I passed a fair amount of people and cleared all the climbs. I knew I was close to being under 50 mins (Which was one of my goals), so I pushed hard at the end of the first lap and made it just under at 49:56. I backed off slightly the second lap but kept the effort steady and tried to be smooth. Passed some more guys and had yet to be passed, which is always a good feeling. I cleared everything the second lap except the belt climb as a geared guy was going too slow and I had to hesitate and stalled. I finished the lap strong for a 51:05 min lap. Last year there were only 3 laps under 50mins in SS, so I thought that I would place pretty well. When I looked at the results, I was 9th out of 26 guys. A little disappointing at first but the spread from 10th to 5th was only a minute which indicated a high level of competition. I was happy that I ran my fastest lap ever at Yankee and had a great time. My new Quiring SS is the best riding bike I have ridden. I can’t wait to get some more time on it.

Willow TT:
This is a fun race that my friend Wayne got me doing. He does Ironmans and Triathlons, so he is all about the TT bike and going fast. I did this race last year and had fun. I had a “ghetto” TT set-up on my road bike (Aerobars) and borrowed an aero wheel and helmet. It was fun, but my results were just ok at 33:58 and 23.4 mph. This year I was lucky enough to borrow a demo Felt B12 from Roll Models Bike to see what I could do. My friend Tony also lent me his Zipp Sub9 rear disk for the set up. Mark got me fitted up on the bike and I did a few rides to try and get comfortable on it. I decided that I needed a support for my head!!

Arianna was also going to do the event on her new bike, so we got up early, loaded up and head down. Arianna went first and finished in 1:02:42 for 2nd place in the girls 10-12 class. I was feeling pretty good and rolled out strong but quickly found that the TT position was work my legs in a weird way so I backed off a little. After a couple laps, I was feeling comfortable and was maintaining a good pace. I rolled across with a time of 31:11 with an avg speed of 25.5mph… which was only 3 sec slower than the winner last year. I felt pretty good about the time and figured I would be in the top 5, but it was only good for 7th in CAT4. Again, the competition was high and 3rd place was only 16s faster! Still a great time and going fast is fun… although I was really happy to be back on my road bike!

Pontiac Lake TT:
I love racing at Pontiac Lake. It is a fast and flowing trail with a little bit of everything. I did an easy lap earlier in the week, but wasn’t sure how I would feel at race pace on the SS. I was also a little unsure about how my legs would respond to back to back races, but they seemed be up to the task. I had preregistered early, as did Patrick Russell, so we were the first SS riders out. I took the lead at the start and set the pace for the first 3 miles or so. I could hear him behind me the whole time and especially on the climbs. He called out to pass and I let him by… but jumped on his wheel. We yo-yoed a bit as he was stronger in some areas and I was stronger in others. As we got near the end, I could tell he was slowing a little as I would buzz his tire on some climbs. He was a competitor though and wasn’t going to let me by! As we got near the end, I let my inner roadie take over and just rode his wheel and let it come down to a sprint. I barely edged him out… probably could have called it a tie. It was a great race. We both set our fastest laps at Pontiac with a 40:40 finishing 2nd and 3rd. It was fun day with perfect weather!