Monday, 22 October 2012

I Missed The Podium...

...because I went to go get my jacket from the start line!

(stolen from the internet - thanks whoever took it)

Nice race at DCCX. I got the hole shot again, which I really wanted because I was terrified of the crashes that would happen in the prologue. Which did indeed happen, and I was quite happy to not be where they were. I think it was Jeff Chun who came around me first, but in any case a group of maybe six or seven jumped off the front a little bit, and Jeff wound up maybe 10 seconds in front of that group. Slowly we nailed him back, with me leading the chase group.

Over the last few races I've done a lot of leading, and I question whether that's good or not. There are a few sections on the DCCX course where drafting is legit, but there's also a lot of really awful ground surfaces and velcro grass. I'm just as happy to be leading but maybe it's a mistake. The DCCX course is pretty different to Sander, where there are a lot of wide open "let 'er rip" sections. I don't know.

Anyhow, as we got to Jeff we were really a 3 person group - Charles Biro, Craig Vettori, and me. As we passed Jeff, we seemed to separate quite a bit from the rest. Craig and I did most of the leading (and for the last lap and a half it was Craig doing the leading and me letting foolish little gaps open up behind Charles and then closing them down), and Charles attacked really hard on the paved uphill section past the pit. Craig went with him, I got caught with my pants down a little bit, made up a bit of the lost ground, and then they both rode very fast and clean through the sidehill "s" and gapped me. At that point the win was off the table, so I rode a bit conservatively just to make sure third stayed in the bag, since there was a guy starting to close in a bit.

Normally, in my head, there's more to dissect than that, but it was a pretty simple race. Pedal hard, don't use your brakes, make it happen.

My goal stays the same - win a race and/or get the series leader jersey and I'm out. If I wind up with the series jersey I am going to race in it once, because when the fuck else in my life am I going to race in a leader's jersey, and then win or lose move up. If the season ends before either of these things happen, too bad for me - move up.

One minor gripe is that our races seem to be getting shorter. Five of us finished under 36 minutes. The last guy to finish on the lead lap was 8' down on the winner, but if you go 5 or so places ahead of that guy you're only 6' and small change down on the leader. There's of course the philosophical issue that says that if, as a rider, you're having this kind of issue with an undercard race, then it's on you to move up, and that's a valid point. But the Master's B has a rider time distribution that's actually tighter than a lot of races. The 45+ race has fewer guys, more guys getting lapped, and still they get an extra lap. Essentially, they get the course for 53' of the hour window that their race sits in. They also have singlespeeds in there too, which probably tags a couple of minutes on to that window. By contrast, the last Master's B guy was off the course after 43'. The top 5 all finished under 36'. That's too short. If you want us to feel ready to make the leap to Master's A, give us another lap.

In any case, another outstanding promotion by DCCX and the MABRA Super 8 powers that be. Thanks to them all.


Mike. said...

Agree on the short race time...I saw 2 to go, then next lap on the finish stretch when I expected to see 1 to go I looked at my GPS and saw 34 minutes, so was shocked when I came around the corner and saw 0 on the counter and they pulled me. You guys had just done the kicker coming off the uphill road, so I was prepared to be lapped near the 2nd barriers by the cobbles. The group maybe 10-20s up on me didn't get pulled, they are the guys I usually come in with.

I think they shortened us because the 4 women and juniors race had gone longer than it should have. The winner from that race came in while we were staging for ours.

Chuck Wagon said...

I didn't realize it if we started late. That would make sense, but it seems like the decision always falls on the side of us getting a shorter race. 80 or so guys finished on the lead lap. Another lap would have put the winner at maybe 43 minutes, and the last guy on the lead lap at 52 or so. That's what happened in the 45+ race just after ours. Oh well.

Mike. said...

Oh, we started on time, I think they went conservative on our race so as not to get behind later in the day, especially since the previous two races had gone long.

So yes, we got shafted, never mind that B Masters is one of the most often filled up classes in any series.