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Race Report: Forget the Titanic, this was worse(1 post)

Race Report: Forget the Titanic, this was worseMarlon
May 22, 2001 8:50 PM
Well, looks like the all-you-can-eat sushi was not the best of ideas the day before the race...

Moderate winds prevailed today at the local Tuesday nighter. The ever increasing competition looked mean and lean, the bikes looked spiffy, and I'd spent all of last week packing my worldly belongings, preparing to move to my summer job across the country. Still, I thought, one last Cat 5 race can't hurt before I get back into training mode. My mistake.

Lap one, again like last week, fairly neutral lap. I thought the pack was taking it a bit fast, but didn't think much of it. Lap two settled down to a more manageable pace, but a young newcomer got a bit rude and started a little game of push and shove. I can understand that in perhaps Cat 3s and up, maybe Cat 4s, but Cat 5? And on the second lap? Give me a break (pardon the pun). An unspoken agreement seemed to go through the pack, and Rude Boy was shot out the back before you could blink. Lap three somehow found me in the lead on a straightaway going into a downhill, but as I began to peter out on the hill afterwards, before I knew it, a strong strong attack happened, and bang, before I knew it, I was going down faster than the Titanic. It honestly surprised the living heck out of me - one minute, I was on top of the world, the next, I was struggling and staring at the behind of the last rider in the pack. It quickly became apparent - the riders following me had attacked, and the pack attempted to reel them in en masse, leaving me in their dust. The next kilometer had me going so hard I thought I was going to sweat and urinate blood, but I managed to catch the pack, just barely, and hung on by sheer will. Bit by bit, I clawed my way to the front until I was trading off with three other riders at the front. Heck, I could even see the breakaway up front, not more than 150m away. And that's when I knew I had nothing left. Absolutely nothing. Unbidden, little leftover fishy bits in my stomach rose from the dead and attempted little spawning rituals in the bile that threatened to fountain up from my stomach. Not a pretty feeling. In the end, it was a repeat of the last time I got dropped - I found myself close to the front on the last lap, and after that damned downhill, the uphill clobbered me again, and sadly, I limped past the finish. In dead last.

Still, it was a good race. I had done my share pulling the pack, I'd made some good friends, and left a good impression on the guys in the pack for good handling and gutsy attempts to lead. A little more fitness, a little more hill climbing, and I would have stayed in contention. But most importantly - no more sushi. At least, not before races. Until then, pass me some more Sapporo...