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I think I actually prefer racing with the guys(9 posts)

I think I actually prefer racing with the guyslonefrontranger
Jun 4, 2003 9:44 PM
... at least at the Mead series. It's a lot more fun and rewarding than getting my ass handed to me by Rona and T-Mobile pros every weekend. Yeah, yeah, I know, boo-hoo. :-P

Anyway, last night was another edition of our weekly world championships, aka the Mead crit. These are points races (sprint every other lap for six placings) and the Men's 4 field was a lot bigger and faster than it was on the first night when I was able to capture a respectable bag of points. Last night we averaged 25.3mph and I just missed out, getting seventh on one prime lap, nuts. Max speed on my Polar was 40.6, but I think this is barf data as most of the primes were contested into a frisky headwind at more like the mid thirties. I'm getting a lot better at moving around the field. There were roughly fifty guys there, which was about a dozen too many for me to claw my way up to the very front, but I was always in the top ten or fifteen on the points laps. Just need to make that final selection. The key is to get serious about fighting for top twenty the entire race rather than getting lazy and baked and sliding back, then getting stuck in the slinky and burning a bunch of matches to move back up.

The field itself was the usual Cat 4 chaotic funsville. We had a couple of mountain biker rookie types who liked to surf the outside lanes and use a different escape vector from everyone else's, which made life in the corners interesting. Going into the final lap sprint, two guys tried their damndest to knock each other down right in front of me, just as I was in the process of sticking my handlebars between them to go through. One of them got a serious Ergopower anal probe, and I hollered "Go fall down somewhere else!" in disgust. This made the guy next to me laugh in the middle of trying to sprint, which in itself is pretty humorous now that I think about it. I don't know whether the proctology or the sarcasm was more effective but they stopped playing footsie and I got the hell outa there. The downside was that the clown show put us something like 20th back at the sprint line. A few laps before this, I was buried in the midst of the field when the wheel I was on let off a humongous sneeze going through the U-turn. This made him get all loose and flat his rear tire in a pothole, so that was an exciting test of maneuverability and reflexes, all the while wondering if dude and I, and a couple dozen of our about to be very close friends were going bowling for dollars. He made a lovely save, so skinny dude on the Klein, whoever you are, you receive mega props for keeping it vertical. Some big horse of a 'critter, you know the type (six foot 180-pounder, quads like beer kegs, eats climbers as supplemental protein on the headwind legs of flat circuit races) gave me a left-handed compliment on the cooldown lap. He complained mock seriously that I am "too small to draft". I tend to lay really low across the bars when I'm on the rivet. When I asked him why in the Nine Million Names of God he was going for chick wheel, he said it was because I was the only one who would or could consistently go across when the front gapped the field. Which begs the question, why wasn't I letting HIM do the work going across... but anyhow. The true question, of course, is to figure out how I can be on the OTHER side of those gaps instead of burning out my sprint getting across, but I'm working on it.

One of the biggest challenges I've been working at this year is how to quit wasting energy doing stupid stuff that I *know* is stupid stuff while I'm doing it, but I still manage to do it, whether out of boredom, impulse, rage, oxygen debt, bloodymindedness or sheer panic. There have been a very few races where I've pulled it together and achieved that holy state of zen-like calm and concentration which led to a great result, but I'd like to think I can enter that state at will.

Hope everyone else's race season is g
Jun 4, 2003 9:45 PM
Hope everyone else's race season is going well. State TT champs and State Crit are both this weekend, oboy I can barely wait.


Thanks LFR...That was great!CARBON110
Jun 5, 2003 6:43 AM
Since I blow through my cyclesport and Velo News in less then 3 days if I really try not to read it, I look for equal reports here. Well done and appreciated
funny, I'd rather race with the ladiesDougSloan
Jun 5, 2003 6:56 AM
But for reasons having nothing to do with speed, bike handling, or strategy... ;-)

Yes, I have done this, after riders from various groups getting dropped in early season races -- sort of create a group on the fly.

GREAT Report!rollo tommassi
Jun 5, 2003 8:54 AM
made me laugh: "Barf data", "Ergopower anal probe"

Sublime: the whole last paragraph!
anytime I can cause someone to blow coffee out their nose at their desk,lonefrontranger
Jun 6, 2003 7:31 PM
... it makes me think I've actually accomplished something for the day.

Haven't seen you around the board in a couple eons, rollo! How's it going? I just about made it to Quad Cities but decided to do a stage race in Missoula instead. I'm glad I went, but holy cow did I get cratered at that race. I don't know what I was thinking; every single stage had ample amounts of those 4-letter words beginning with "h" which are the most profane cussword known to sprinters.
anytime I can cause someone to blow coffee out their nose at their desk,rollo tommassi
Jun 7, 2003 5:58 PM
I've been lurking, but have been crazed lately - wedding plans coming down to the wire. We're having a big party a week from tomorrow, so lots of family and friends from out of town. I think everyone is excited just to see me in a dress!! ;)

Really, though, your race report was beautiful. I always want to go to Quad Cities, but I'm never in shape so 'early'. Late bloomer, me....
I'm glad someone else enjoys this kind of thingMcAndrus
Jun 5, 2003 9:45 AM
I can finish 35th in a field of 40 and still feel I had a good race. Someday I'll get tactically smart enough to actually do something. In the meantime I just love closing gaps that no one else can close, leaning shoulder-to-shoulder going through corners, and wondering just how close I can get to the curb without actually touching it.

Keep posting the reports. They make my day.
Gotta love racin' 4sNo_sprint
Jun 9, 2003 8:02 AM
Sometimes we get fields of 120 that include world class tri dudes, mtn. dudes. Other guys include great 4 lifers and 5s that would get shelled off a local 40 man 5 field who are responsible for at least 3 crashes in a single race. I'm with ya, I love the solo flyers and barfin' for a $1.50 Starbucks prime. Can't wait til Sunday. I should be nice and primed after seein' Matchbox 20 on Sat.

OT: I finally got that coach I've been wafflin' over for years. Time to crap again or get off the pot for good. He's cool, should be good for me. Also finally got rid of the last of the Shimmy stuff on all rigs. Campyonly, finally... what a relief.