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Are you races abnormally fast this season?(8 posts)

Are you races abnormally fast this season?Duane Gran
Apr 23, 2002 7:40 AM
I race in D20 (mid-atlantic) and this spring I've noticed the 3/4 and 4/5 races have been exceptionally fast for the early season. Last year around this time most races were averaging around 22 mph but I've had three races already with 24+ mph averages. Last year I wasn't seeing that sort of speed until the end of the season (with a few 27mph races at the tail end).

We have had a very mild winter this year and I'm curious if others have noticed this nation-wide or if I'm mistaken. I'm not complaining or anything, because I'm hanging in there alright, but I'm just curious what others have noticed.

And the big question... do you think a lot of people are peaking too early and the real show will be in July?
re: Are you races abnormally fast this season?eschelon
Apr 23, 2002 7:47 AM
I've also wondered about these "Christmas Stars"
re: Are you races abnormally fast this season?da cyclist
Apr 24, 2002 7:10 AM
What have you wondered about them?
re: Are you races abnormally fast this season?Wayne
Apr 23, 2002 8:24 AM
Duane,
I race in the D20 also, I hope you're right about them being faster since I've been feeling real good anyway, better than I ever did last year. Did you do Columbia? I did the 30+ and the 4 and was shocked to find out the difference in speed was only 7/10th of a mile (26.1 vs. 25.4mph). I'd always heard the 30+ was pretty much the hardest race after the 1/2/3, and I expected there to be a bigger descrepancy in the average mphs. I know the 30+ felt alot faster than the 4's, even though the 4's were my second race.
re: Are you races abnormally fast this season?Duane Gran
Apr 23, 2002 10:11 AM
Wayne,

I didn't do Columbia, but I'm not too surprised by what you describe. From what I can tell, the average speed in races isn't very different, but the more seasoned racers are more adept at holding and defending their wheel. The 30+ races seem more strung out in a line whereas the 4/5 races are more of a "lump" moving down the course.

Speaking of Columbia, Greg Taylor (a regular on RBR) wrote a review of the cat5 race for cyclingnews.com:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/features/?id=lardbuttcurse

I'm hanging okay, but my team strictly warned me about staying the course with training and to do the base miles even when the weather was awesome. I hope this was the right choice.
Exactly,Wayne
Apr 23, 2002 1:47 PM
Your description is spot on, the 30+ was strung out so much more often than the 4, it seemed like people were always trying to get away whereas the 4 didn't seem to "stretch" nearly as often. I wonder if this is not in large part why there are more crashes in 4/5 races?
Exactly,Duane Gran
Apr 23, 2002 7:54 PM
I think there are generally more people in the 4/5 races than the masters races, so this may be another factor. I have another theory about races which I suspect also applies to Masters races. I'm 28, so this is an offhand observation.

In the 3/4 races, you get bumped intentionally, or at the very least nobody seems to think anything of the bumping. In the 4/5 races you get bumped accidentally and several people freak out, holler and over react... crash ensues a quarter of the time by my estimates. ;)
Yes,Wayne
Apr 24, 2002 5:23 AM
most crashes seem to occur not because of the initial bumping but because of over reacting or just an inability to compensate for a bump which a more experienced riding could handle.