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Race Report: Upstate Road Race: Greenville,SC (First Race)(3 posts)

Race Report: Upstate Road Race: Greenville,SC (First Race)neverspeakingup
Aug 16, 2003 4:39 PM
The race course, in previews looked remarkably flat and quick, with no killer corners. I drove up from Atlanta, and waking up in time to do that really killed me, after a nearly sleepless night full of pre-race jitters. We arrived to find a fairly large Cat 5 field had signed up. My friends and I had planned a break from the front, but 2 of our "teammates" were AWOL, so nothing significant materialized. My friend Jon went off the front early in the race, with only one chaser, which drove the pace sky-high from the first turn. The format was a 4 lap race, 7 miles per lap, and we were screaming from the start. The thing that bugged me is something I assume is typical of all cat 5 races. On downhills, the front of the pack simply refused to pedal, causing a cascade of braking through the pack, leading to more than one close call. Then, when we would come to one of the gradual uphills, the pace would alternate between breakneck, balls out hill climbing, and crawling up the hill at 18 mph. This yo-yo really did its toll on my legs. Towards the end of the 2nd lap, I found myself, much to my suprise, in a lead group of about 5 guys. The draft that I could get wasnt very strong, but I was firmly lodged in my second wind, riding strong, and knew I could maintain my current HR for another 14 miles. Things were looking up. I came across the line riding solidly in 4th, hopefully a picture was snapped. Taking advantage of the breathing room, I decided to pull a bottle and take a swig. Unfortunately, this really threw off my rhythm, and I ended up taking the first corner and ensuing sprint with a water bottle in my left hand. I got gapped off the lead group and soon found myself re-intergrated like Little Rock in the 60s. I decided to sit pretty in the pack, but much to my chagrin, the pace was steadily increasing and decreasing, and I was pretty much out of fuel. With about a mile left in the third lap, the group took off in a re-acceleration sprint after a track crossing, and I was blown. I did my best to limp in at 18 mph, and pulled off to the side with the rest of my fallen comrades. I ended up with a distance of 21.5 miles and a time of somewhere in the vicinity of 52 mins. Faster than I've ever rode at a average of 24 mph. I'm pretty happy with what I did, though in hindsight I wish I'd limped the last lap through so as to at least finish the race. Pretty good learning experience, and overall a awesome first race. I'm officially hooked!
re: Race Report: Upstate Road Race: Greenville,SC (First Race)flyinbowlofmilk
Aug 17, 2003 6:57 PM
Congradulations! I just came back from the Circuit race today. sound like you had a blast. What you are explaining is very typical in a Cat 5 RR. Let me introduce you to a term called the "accordion effect" . But it sound like you made it through it. That is going to happen in a RR or Crit., so get prepared for it. That is going to happen to you for a while before you know what is going to work for you. Take it from me a 2nd year Cat 5 racer,it going to happen. Good luck, And I hope you plenty more good learning experience.

P.S.

FBM
Cat up as soon as you are comfortable.niteschaos
Aug 20, 2003 2:10 PM
I did my time in Cat 5 and it almost cost me my machine and my health. Had a guy wipe out in the last corner of the last 3 races I've done and almost take me with him. I'm racing Cat 4 in a week, so I can report first hand then. All my friends said that I would want to be a 4, so I followed their advice.