|Breakfast||5:45 AM – smoothie |
9:45 AM – cereal
|Lunch||12:30 PM – half a PowerBar, 5-Hour Energy|
|Workout Food||2 large bottle each w/3 scoops Perpetuem, gel, half a PowerBar|
|Time of Day||1:20 PM|
|Weather||upper 40s to 50, rain, wind|
|Course||18 mile loop, mostly flat with a few big ring rollers|
|Results||Masters 30+ Cat 1/2/3|
Zipp 404 wheels
|Clothing||Sugoi shoe covers, bib shorts, Craft long sleeve undershirt, short sleeve jersey, arm warmers, Curve raincoat, OR Gripper gloves, cap|
Glued my rear tire on last night; race wheels sure are hard to give up once you get a chance to ride them...
There is something special about waking up, getting ready and driving down to a race knowing all the while that it will absolutely, positively, guaranteed be a crappy day. You have to embrace it or be grumpy. I had embraced it until the point when I parked the van in the water-logged grass field and had to hop and skip through sloppy mud to take a leak. Oh well.
I saw some really good size fields but when it was time for my masters field to line up there were just nine of us. Sheesh. Oh yeah, four were from Garage Racing so you know how that is going to go.
I managed to cover the first three attacks and even initiated one myself but every time I was off the front the 'field' chased me. The fourth Garage attack was from Michael M and Mark F (Excel) went with him and I could not. They quickly opened up a gap and after recovering a bit I tried twice (three times?) to get away and bridge but each time Garage chased me down.
ASIDE – I had opted for the totally PRO attire choice of bare legs today. It did not seem that cold and I was not convinced soggy knee warmers were going to help me any. I just slathered moisturizing cream all over my legs and called it good. I don't think I suffered from my decision but it was not a pleasant day.
After the break was out of site (10 miles into the race?) we just kind of dorked around. I did NOT want to ride 60 miles like this so I tried to get away a few more times. Each time Garage chased me. As we completed lap one I turned to Kevin M (garage) and suggested that perhaps it was in their best interest to let a teammate get up the road. I told him I would work and worst case it would stack the break in their favor. He replied, "Yeah... we'll get something going." Not 60 seconds later I responded to a Garage acceleration – by Kevin no less – and we were gone.
Our gap grew quickly but then just as quickly our pace slowed some. We rode lap two at a reasonable pace, lap three at a slower pace and then a couple of miles into lap four the official's car pulled up and said we only had 30-45 seconds on the chase. A few miles later the car pulled up again and said they were just eight seconds behind us! Oh yeah, we were crawling.
I was having the hardest time keeping my energy levels up. Not sure if it was the cold and wet but I felt like I needed more fuel. My drinks which are usually ample were NOT cutting it today. And I was having a hell of a time getting anything out of my jersey pockets as my rain jacket is pretty form fitting. :( Once I did get my PowerBar out of my pocket (thank goodness I had remembered to open the wrapper before the start!) I knew there was no way I was getting it back in so fro the first time I shoved food up my shorts. I'm here to tell you it works.
Unfortunately my gel flask is a bit big to tuck under my shorts so I struggled mightily getting it back into my pocket. Each time I tried I would stuff my rain jacket in my pocked too. Crap. I had to use both hands each time. Not good.
Long story short gel was saving my bacon. It was the only thing that seemed to work quickly enough.
Once we got caught I immediately countered but Garage had been sitting on and so that lasted about 10 seconds. Turns out Daren P was the engine that pulled us back. Good for him. Garage tried twice to attack but I had enough left to catch them both so with the last incline before the descent we were all together again.
On the climb (if you can call it that) a Garage rider ramped up the pace and I simply matched it. At the top we were away so I put in a pull. We were away and one Garage rider was chasing and the guy I was with seemed really gassed so we sat up for a second to let the chaser catch us and then it was down the hill.
After we descended we still had a gap but suddenly both of the Garage riders were too tired to do anything. Damn. I pulled once and then was spent myself so could not do anything except slow down. Daren again pulled the last couple of riders up to us and caught us with about 500 m to go at which point a Garage rider scooted past me and I was powerless to respond. In the 'sprint' one more Garage rider passed me. Funny how people are always too tired to pull but not too tired to sprint. :)
It was good riding with Kevin. He seems really nice. After the race he said he was worried he was slowing me down while we were off the front but I didn't exactly drop him or pull him around so so worries Kevin. Kudos to Michael and Mark. They are both strong and had about 5-7 minutes on us by the finish. On our second lap we got passed by the Cat 3 pack that was flying! Masters are slow.