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2021 race stories

Old 05-20-21, 05:49 PM
  #26  
wktmeow
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Originally Posted by Doge View Post
He was. I was the large guy walking around in the red flannel lumberjack shirt with a video camera. Too busy this week working to edit the video.
When juniors the LUX kids would do a team thing and beat up on Predictor (Legions predecessor) more times than not. Really there was no opportunity to di much with the 9 guys in the lead the last 10 laps. Junior tried a kick last lap and got sucked back fast. He had a blast and changed his mind about not getting a USAC license and wants to do TOAD now with some LUX alum.
They are talking of downgrading to Cat 2s which I think is a mistake. Riding against pros is not an issue, while riding against pro teams certainly is.
I thought you'd recognize his socks. Rider on the right owns Laguna Beach cyclery which was his summer job last year.
Ok yea I remember seeing him, same kit as the guy with the huge dreadlocks

In my video at 34 mins or so I think he was having some trouble with the bike maybe, or thought he had a flat?

I remember when Imeh downgraded to cat 3 and decimated us... what races would he do as a cat 2 that he wouldn't be racing against the same field anyway?
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Old 05-20-21, 06:32 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by wktmeow View Post
Ok yea I remember seeing him, same kit as the guy with the huge dreadlocks

In my video at 34 mins or so I think he was having some trouble with the bike maybe, or thought he had a flat?

I remember when Imeh downgraded to cat 3 and decimated us... what races would he do as a cat 2 that he wouldn't be racing against the same field anyway?
He had some mechanical issues with the same dropouts - wheel pulls out under max power. We normally have a shim in there. First race out of storage and things are not right. He "trains" on his cross/gravel bike.

TOAD has a 2/3 field for 11 crits. I think only TOAD makes the top 2. Tulsa Tough has a P1 and 123.
Yea - he plans to go with Imeh and maybe his bro (another 2000W sprinter) they thought they could have some fun winning if they get away from the pro trains. Thing is he had a lot of fun Sunday just going in circles.

This weekend they are trying a Mt Baldy summit KOM, my wife is going to mule for them, I'm driving to CO.
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Old 05-23-21, 01:52 PM
  #28  
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Win!

Can't find a good side pic yet of riding on course, but had a good regional TT champ day. I won 4/5 and time was good for 8th fastest overall. A couple masters and a couple 1/2 guys really really ripped it at 29 to 31mph. Rest of us in the 10 best times of the day were all 26 to 28mph. I did 26.6mph.

I was well prepped and did my plan, but the day really did toss a pair of issues. In warmup the hub on the disc wheel wanted to toss the chain. There's something wrong going on there. Since it was in the slowest gear for me slowing to a u-turn in warmup, it went off inside. Just a little rub on the sticker in there. But still. Crap. I wound up taking the turns a lot slower than normal so that I could pedal through them to avoid any possible chain issue. You can't really rip corners with an inside pedal down, so lost some time for that.

Then on the line my meter went to sleep and wouldn't wake up. So had to do the whole thing by HR and RPE. That cost me a smoother start. So overcooked the start, settled down, then ripped home. HR avg and taper up over time tells me likely a power pr, maybe 265w for the 55min. If I had to guess.

A couple triathlete ringers did show up in 4/5 but I barely beat them despite the issues. Some of them didn't pay or do their one-day license right, so my riding buddy on the team got a bump from 5th or 6th to getting a 3rd sent to him in the mailbox.

I still had fun. Easy course, great organizer. Officials were a good balance of diligent but also understanding. I couldn't get my number perfect in the pouch but they were fine with it when I asked. But, they weren't happy with a few folks showing up with triathlete "fairing" hydration systems like I run in training. I took that off on purpose knowing it's bad manners for a TT. I just hydrate then don't drink.

Gives me a lot to work on for next year. I'm happy with 26.6 mph for a 40k given where I was a year ago, but I still feel it's slower than I could be or should be on a course that fast. Even with the u-turn tossed in there. I really want to gain a mph before next year. Gain some watts in training/pacing and a few in position. I'm not 100% happy on the front end yet. It's really good for decent amateur stuff, but needs some work.

I'm dying to see on-course pics from one guy who should have gotten side-on pictures.

Arms ain't going any higher than that after shrugging the shoulders to hold the position for an hour nonstop.....




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Old 05-31-21, 03:17 AM
  #29  
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I started a cat 3/4 crit last week (40 minutes, cool dedicated closed circuit) and made 4 laps (!).

Basically we had a grid start and I was at the back. A couple of folks ahead of me couldn't clip in and I went around in the grass. The line is at the top of a rise, so at the back you're sort of coming up as the front is down the hill. With all those excuses out of the way, I'm still a little dumbfounded. I chased hard and thought I'd caught, but it was a group that had just then decided to sit up. Ugh.

Do you ever have results that are just outrageously bad? Inconsistency has pretty much been a hallmark of my entire racing life.
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Old 05-31-21, 03:37 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Yep View Post
Do you ever have results that are just outrageously bad? Inconsistency has pretty much been a hallmark of my entire racing life.
I feel you. This is the story of my racing life. Glad to see you got out there and got it going again.
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Old 05-31-21, 05:22 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Yep View Post
Do you ever have results that are just outrageously bad? Inconsistency has pretty much been a hallmark of my entire racing life.
I was probably the worst rated cyclist in the US in 2014, 2015 and that's not an exaggeration. I was outrageously bad for a few years. Probably the only reason I am still doing to is for some redemption.
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Old 06-01-21, 12:52 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
I was probably the worst rated cyclist in the US in 2014, 2015 and that's not an exaggeration. I was outrageously bad for a few years. Probably the only reason I am still doing to is for some redemption.
Iíll go out and do a race like itís my first, then do the next one like a passable cat 2. Even Worlds from one week to the next, Iíll get dropped then mix it the whole way on the next one. The other guys there, youíd call the doctor if they ever got dropped.

As Iíve ruminated on it, I think a lot is down to technique. My handles are good, in terms of keeping it upright, but positioning isnít great and neither is cornering, unless I really focus, which I donít always do. I also suspect that other riders go deeper than I give them credit for.
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Old 06-03-21, 08:41 AM
  #33  
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I won my first race of the season! It was a short circuit race, 50+, 5 laps 1.3 miles each with a 136' hill and the start/finish line half way up. ~20 starters. 1 team had 3 strong riders and they attacked/pushed the pace for the first 3 laps, and I put in a dig for the top 1/3 of the hill of lap 3 and 4 to make it tough to latch back on for the descent. This whittled us down to a group of 5 or 6 riders with 2 from the team of 3 and a lap to go. The teammates then got on front and let a gap open to their lead rider entering the last lap. Of course none of us wanted to pull him back, so he entered the final hill with a decent lead. I started the sprint from near the base of the final hill, maybe 30 or 35 seconds from the finish thinking we were all sprinting for 2nd place, and I was likely going too early and I'd get 3rd or 4th. Turns out I caught the guy out front close to the line for the win. He was either really hurting by that point, or thought we had another lap to go so he was moving pretty slowly by the finish. Either way I got it.
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Old 06-03-21, 08:50 AM
  #34  
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cmh Congrats on the win. Almost like a scratch race at the track - short/fast.
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Old 06-04-21, 07:26 AM
  #35  
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Nice win cmh!!! Good stuff right there.

Speaking of scratch races, we had the first TNR at the track on Tuesday since 2019! Good times. I have good fitness (for me), but as I often do, I found myself slightly behind the top riders and better than the rest. So "slightly above average", like every good child's report card should say. In the Men's A's there are some juniors that are freakin' swinging' fast right now, should make for some good racing. I think some of these kids are 18+ now, but they still count as juniors as long as I am nearly twice their age lol. I've known some of these since they were barely hanging on in my races (road and track) at 14/15 years old, so I also knew to be very scared of them haha. They're a good bunch of kids.

Highlight was the 15 lap tempo race, where I got 3rd place. A tempo race awards 2 points for first and 1 point for second across the line each lap. As per my usual strategy, I sat in the first few and let the yahoos light it up and get their adrenaline out, then started going for points. I grabbed one sprint by going early, and then a second. No one else really contested the second, so I put my head down and grinded out another lap to get 4 points out of the effort.

Looking forward to more track racing coming up! My road fitness is good, as evidence by my ability to recover, but man I haven't squeezed my legs that hard for extended periods for a long time. This will be good for my top end fitness. I'm lean and aerobically fit, but I need to build some muscle if I want to contest these sprints. I like to take it up early anyway, and will likely continue that strategy.

This weekend we have the Tour de Murrieta, where I will race the M35+ 1-4 and P/1/2 crit on Saturday for a combined 125 minutes of crit racing, then the 55 mi P/1/2 circuit on Saturday. I am hoping that I can sleep and otherwise recover well so that I can race track well next Tuesday!
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Old 06-06-21, 12:05 PM
  #36  
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Copperopolis Road Race

My plan was tear apart the field because really I thought that was the only chance I had. The hill was probably too small for me to do that, and 2 of us worked hard but it only got down to 6 (out of 12). 4 of them were on 2 teams and whenever I finished a pull they would attack, so I just sat in the back and let them do the work. I was feeling okay but when I went down the descent I took some bumps really hard and I would have swore I blacked out for a split second (its hard to describe how bumpy this descent was, definitely the worst I've been on in asphalt). After that I was done, and got dropped. I lost 2 minutes, almost latched back on the hill but it took too much and I was done. I'm frustrated that my riding ability keeps putting me out of races, but I'm not going to beat myself up over it. at least 3 guys (including one guy that I stopped for on the second lap) were medevac'ed out from going down on that descent.

I think you had to be out of the saddle (I wasn't) and a bit back to do descend there. Some racers had zero issues on it and others just couldn't do it. If I ever do the race again I'll have to work on that, but being a 15 hour roundtrip its debatable if I'll ever do it again.

That's probably the last race (as a competitor) I'll do this year, we have open crits, but since it all ages and cats its more just a donation and practice. Hopefully some more stuff gets organized with hills.
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Old 06-06-21, 02:03 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
Copperopolis Road Race.
I did that race exactly once and never went back. Those roads are brutal.

Good job on figuring out what you needed to do to win and going for it. It takes courage to go for it and risk getting spit out the back. The easy way is to sit in and just finish with the pack with no chance to win and you didn't take it. You should feel good about that. Channel you inner Jens Voigt and enjoy the effort.
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Old 06-06-21, 09:47 PM
  #38  
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furiousferret When I lived in NorCal, I avoided Copperopolis due to the bad road descent and it is not a great course for me. I did race on some of the Copperopolis roads in the Topsport Stage Race and the Madero Stage race had a 2.2 mile section of terrible road that beat the crap out of racers. I raced Madera twice and said never again.
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Old 06-07-21, 06:43 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by ntnyln View Post
I did that race exactly once and never went back. Those roads are brutal.

Good job on figuring out what you needed to do to win and going for it. It takes courage to go for it and risk getting spit out the back. The easy way is to sit in and just finish with the pack with no chance to win and you didn't take it. You should feel good about that. Channel you inner Jens Voigt and enjoy the effort.
Just as importantly, he realized that it wasn't worth it to try again and said once is enough. Didn't fall into the trap of, "oh well next time, I'll fix ____ and ____ and it'll turn out differently".
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Old 06-07-21, 08:33 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by furiousferret View Post
Copperopolis Road Race

My plan was tear apart the field because really I thought that was the only chance I had. The hill was probably too small for me to do that, and 2 of us worked hard but it only got down to 6 (out of 12). 4 of them were on 2 teams and whenever I finished a pull they would attack, so I just sat in the back and let them do the work. I was feeling okay but when I went down the descent I took some bumps really hard and I would have swore I blacked out for a split second (its hard to describe how bumpy this descent was, definitely the worst I've been on in asphalt). After that I was done, and got dropped. I lost 2 minutes, almost latched back on the hill but it took too much and I was done. I'm frustrated that my riding ability keeps putting me out of races, but I'm not going to beat myself up over it. at least 3 guys (including one guy that I stopped for on the second lap) were medevac'ed out from going down on that descent.

I think you had to be out of the saddle (I wasn't) and a bit back to do descend there. Some racers had zero issues on it and others just couldn't do it. If I ever do the race again I'll have to work on that, but being a 15 hour roundtrip its debatable if I'll ever do it again.

That's probably the last race (as a competitor) I'll do this year, we have open crits, but since it all ages and cats its more just a donation and practice. Hopefully some more stuff gets organized with hills.
Yeah, trying to tear apart the field doesn't really work there. The typical strategy is to let the race come to you -- survive the first half, let the roads beat everyone up, ride hard enough up the main hill, and typically, a late race attack on the little climb before the descent is pretty typical. Maintaining speed and gearing is pretty important on that course -- too light doesn't work well on bad pavement and too big will crack your legs. The idea is to maintain enough speed at all times to skim over most of the bad stuff.

The descent, as you realized, requires you to be relaxed, weight back, and loose on the bike and just letting your bike run.

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Old 06-07-21, 11:45 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by tobukog View Post
Yeah, trying to tear apart the field doesn't really work there. The typical strategy is to let the race come to you -- survive the first half, let the roads beat everyone up, ride hard enough up the main hill, and typically, a late race attack on the little climb before the descent is pretty typical. Maintaining speed and gearing is pretty important on that course -- too light doesn't work well on bad pavement and too big will crack your legs. The idea is to maintain enough speed at all times to skim over most of the bad stuff.

The descent, as you realized, requires you to be relaxed, weight back, and loose on the bike and just letting your bike run.
The rest of the course was bumpy but tolerable. Just that descent was terrible. My triceps have never been sore after a race, If I lived in Sacramento or nearby I could drive out and do a few runs, but I'm 7 hours away. The course did pretty much played out as you called it, which really doesn't play to my strengths but I was solid up that point.

Originally Posted by ntnyln View Post
I did that race exactly once and never went back. Those roads are brutal.

Good job on figuring out what you needed to do to win and going for it. It takes courage to go for it and risk getting spit out the back. The easy way is to sit in and just finish with the pack with no chance to win and you didn't take it. You should feel good about that. Channel you inner Jens Voigt and enjoy the effort.
Thanks! The issue I have is I have a very specific strength (climbing) and unfortunately SoCal doesn't have that this year (and is trending not to have any more), not even a crit with a hill. NorCal is the best place for that but its a long drive, so I'm only going up if I think I have chance to win. Since the hill is at the beginning people can just TTT and close the gap so its not really great. Next year hopefully there will be a bigger selection of races.

We don't even have a descent down here that's close to that. Its like they just throw patches of asphalt on the holes every few years and its no longer resembles anything smooth nor is there a line you can take. We have pothole ridden and half dirt descents, but nothing that resembles descending on the surface of a golf ball.


Last edited by furiousferret; 06-07-21 at 04:40 PM. Reason: need to proofread before posting so I don't sound like a 5th grader
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Old 06-08-21, 08:24 AM
  #42  
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Drove down from sunny NorCal to sunny SoCal for Tour De Murietta.
On Saturday did M35+ 3/4 crit. I had no real plan besides just to have fun and get comfortable in the pack after more than a year of not racing. Folsom Classic was a bit of a rude awakening. Specially Masters 1/2/3. So I went for few prims, and tried to break away. Got prims easily, but field caught me. With two to go I made same mistake I usually do. Got complacent near the front and got swamped. Thankfully field was kind of timid, so on back straight I was able to move on the right to the front again. Near the gutter. Re-learned that from Folsom Crit. Out of the final corner I was near the front, but not sheltered from the wind. Sprinted for top ten with kind of tired legs.

Did E2/3 afterwards. I don't know if it was because I had slight heat stroke or that Poke I ate, but I felt like ****. Was just hanging on at the back. We were not even going all that fast, after few laps.

On Sunday I did E2/3 circuit race. Started at the back, and moved up to near the front. Rest of the race was spend yoyoing back and forth between mid/back to front. With 6 laps to go or so tried to break away just by taking corner at speed that I was comfortable with and opening a gap. Two more joined, but we were caught soon after. With three to go everything unraveled. These constant accelerations out of corners killed my legs, and I felt super hungry. Finished towards the back.

This is only my second race weekend this year, but it's been very frustrating. I am strong enough for 3s, but not even mid pack for 2s it seems.
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Old 06-09-21, 08:16 AM
  #43  
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I also raced TdM this weekend! Didn't go exactly as planned, but still I'm happy to have raced it and had a good time overall.

Sat - M 35+/45+ 1-4: outside of top 10

I started the weekend with the master's race. My first one! I knew the riders to look out for and felt fairly confident in my ability to make the selection, which always happens in this race. Except I didn't... I did attack at one point for ~1 lap and almost lost it with two corners to go. There's a strip of smooth concrete in the middle of the brick corner and if you hit it at the wrong spot, it can be quite slippery for the rear. I unclipped and was able to keep it upright, and that's 'all she wrote' for that move.

Fast fwd a few laps, it's a prime, and I'm planning on surfing wheels and countering the prime. Except a move goes on the back stretch on the right, and I'm boxed in on the left. I failed to recognize the significance of the riders in the move, and thought that I'd let others bring it back. I also thought it was a prime lap and they'd slow down, too many riders (~10) to work cooperatively, blah blah. Robbie Alvarez (Tucson winner) did an awesome job in the field of pulling at the right level of effort, discouraging attacks and going slightly slower than the split. It took a lap of that before I realized that we were screwed. Damnit. I was sort of pissed b/c I had plenty of legs and energy. Once we got to the cards at least I broke away with two other strong-ish riders and we did start to gain some ground, but didn't get back up there. Lesson learned, I needed to be more vigilant in this race.

Sat - P/1/2, DNF

OK this ride was hard AF and I felt like total crap lol. I had an hour to rest between the races but I did not recover well, I guess. It was 88 degrees at the start, my HR was jacked at the line (~40 bpm over starting a morning training ride), too much coffee, and super windy. Like 0 recovery on the long stretches. Either doing 600w or 0 the whole race. And I wasn't the only one! I think there were 20 finishers, so under half the field.

I seriously thought I was going to get dropped 20 min in. Then I felt ok, then like crap, then great (weird), then like crap... We hit the lap cards and I thought "OK, I'm going to finish the race". At 5 or 6 to go, we round corner one and it's just shattered, gaps everywhere and groups of 2 to 3. I soft pedaled the rest of the lap and pulled out after, feeling a bit dejected.

Sun P/1/2 circuit race, field finish

The forecast called for 10 degrees cooler on Sunday, and I remember feeling better on day 2 the previous year. So I did feel more optimistic for that reason. I had some more teammates come out as well, one who could go on the attack and another with a decent sprint finish so that made things more interesting. The one teammate did attack up the slight climb on lab three which lined things out and made it sorta hard which was cool.

The field split randomly after we passed a neutralized M 35+ 3/4 field on Sunday, which sorta sucked. Again I'm on the wrong side. This time, I was able to work and organize a chase and bring it back after an entire lap of chasing (~4.2 mi). We were racing like cat 3's... Guys pulling through way too hard, gapping the group, then being too gassed to pull through next rotation, noobs. Not pulling off into the wind to leave a smoother/faster line to advance, dumb stuff like that. After doing the lions share of the work, and some yelling, we were able to get back.

Not a ton to say after that, other than that I finished the race feeling fine. I almost considered attacking at a few points when I had some momentum on the field and a clear line to open road, but didn't. Maybe next time!
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Old 06-09-21, 08:51 AM
  #44  
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Were you #13? My kid said someone "from the forums" was talking to him.
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Old 06-09-21, 09:57 AM
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yeah that was me haha. im sure he commented as well that Saturday was hard, he was struggling back there w me
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Old 06-09-21, 10:25 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
yeah that was me haha. im sure he commented as well that Saturday was hard, he was struggling back there w me
It seemed pretty fast to me (watching). He was certainly struggling and lots of predictable reasons for that.
Things are different now and he pays his entry so if a DNF and/or sufferings at the back are OK with him, I'm not [very] bothered by it. It was a reason to ride the motorcycle over Ortega Hwy two days for me and watch some bike racing which, I kinda like.
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Old 06-09-21, 03:23 PM
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Redeemed myself from getting dropped 4 laps into a 3/4 Crit over the last couple of weeks and got 7th in the next two weeks. Points go 10 deep, so I was happy with that, but more relieved that my fitness hadn't in fact magically vanished.

I think I'll keep doing the 3/4s (as opposed to the 1/2/3s), and see if I can get my cat 2. With 40 points to get, and a max of 10 points in each Crit, it'll either click and I'll get better results and a quick upgrade, or I'll keep hanging around the bottom of the top 10 and grind it out through the end of the summer. A teammate won the first 3 in a row, which I found pretty impressive, no matter the level.

Last edited by Yep; 06-10-21 at 04:40 AM.
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Old 06-10-21, 08:20 AM
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Nice job Yep
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Old 06-10-21, 10:55 AM
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2nd week of the same short circuit race I won last week (It is a 6 week series) - 2nd place this week. The race played out similarly, but was a little easier pace, which played out well for the winner who is a really good sprinter for 50+. Same as last week, I pushed hard the 2nd half of the hill and over the top on a couple laps to try to make it harder, but not many others wanted to push the pace. A rider started the sprint really early (400m out), kinda forcing me to jump hard to catch his wheel. I came around him with 150meters to go, but the winner had caught my wheel and passed me fast at the same time winning by several bike lengths. The winner is a close friend, sometimes training partner, and was a teammate of mine for years. He nearly always beats me in a sprint, especially if it is uphill since I outweigh him by ~30 lbs, and in fact, last week was the first time I outsprinted him in a race in a long, long time. So, I'm going to have to figure out how to get a break going without him to win this again and try to hold my series lead. All good fun.

I doubled up this week racing the 40+ after my 50+ race and it hurt as much as I thought it would. I kept with the lead group (although gapped a couple times and had to chase back on the descent) and was there for the finish. Since I didn't think I had much left to contest a sprint in this group I jumped at ~600 meters to go, thinking it was a long shot, and would keep the pace high and safe for everyone. Predictably, I got a gap, but was swamped at about 200 to go and limped across the line back of the pack.
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Old 06-10-21, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
... I don't know if it was because I had slight heat stroke or that Poke I ate, but I felt like ****.
Strike one against pre-race Poke on a hot day .
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