Friday, August 29, 2008

Roadie Racin

My day as a roadie ended up going pretty decently. Road races rarely excite me, but the River Gorge race in Chattanooga intrigued me as it ended with a 3 mile climb and summit finish. It turned out to be an awesome course, I would love to have that route as a training ride. Lots of rolling stuff, long steady climbs, short steep climbs, and a crazy fast 50 mph descent thrown in for good measure. The race went pretty much without incident, and I stayed in the top third away from the evil wind for the whole time.

When the climb started, I attacked and got a good gap on the field. No one followed at that point, but about a mile or mile and a half in one guy was pulling up towards me and caught me. We went back and forth for the rest of the climb, with me dropping him a bit and then him catching back up. He gained a good chunk of time on a 30+ mph descent before the last mile, as I was a bit sluggish getting over the big gears cresting the hill. I led the race until he caught me at the 100m mark and went around. The road sort of flattened out and he jumped with 50m or so to go and I just didn't have the legs to go, so I was left with a second place in the cat 5. 3rd was nowhere to be seen. I was sort of disapointed to lose it in the last 100m after leading the entire climb, but thats how it goes somedays. I could throw out a couple of excuses, but I think I'll just go with "I didn't make it to the top of the mountain fast enough" instead.

>Observation 1: Whats with the ginormous roadie numbers? The two numbers we had to wear took up about 60% of the real estate on my back... I could barely get into my pockets with the clutter. And apparantly that wasn't enough, so we had to have bike numbers on the seatpost as well...seriously? Do you want to go ahead and magic marker it on my calf and arms too?

>Observation 2: People do weird stuff. The race started with about 9 miles of flat rolling terrain, and one guy attacked and rode it all by himself... at about 300 yds in front of the group. There really wasn't any teamwork either. Another guy pulled by himself at 30-35 mph for almost 4 miles. I mean, thats awesome and all, but why do that to yourself? And we can't forget about the guy that got really pissed after getting DQed for crossing the yellow line... after getting 3 warnings. Not sure what he was going for there.

1 Comment:

  1. Stephen and Rachel said...
    That is what you call CATEGORY 5 racing!!!!! Usually there are some pretty decent crashes in the Cat 5 races too. Good job on your could be considered a "sand bagger" since you are basically a PRO mountain biker!!! Only kidding. Just giving you a VERY hard time. See ya!

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