Friday, July 22, 2016

Gwinnett Arena Crit

Last night was the Gwinnett Arena crit that took place on a technical, half uphill and half downhill course in a parking lot at the Gwinnett Arena. As I arrived to the course lightning was illuminating the sky and rain was pouring like buckets. It appeared this race was going to be cancelled as the women's race was put on hold for the terrible weather, and the weather predicted thunderstorms all evening. Luckily after half an hour the storm subsided and the sun came out. Even though the sun came out I was predicting a slippery course because there should be oil in a parking lot. However, the blazing sun dried the course out by the time our race began. However, I still ran rain pressure in my tires. Our race was 60 minutes in duration. The race started with a flurry of attacks, and I decided to just stay near the front and make splits at first. After about 20 minutes there was a lull, and the bell rang for mid-race bonus points. I attacked at this point and got a big gap to take the maximum 5 points. I was solo for a few laps and thought I would be able to win this way. However, a few riders bridged up to me. Then after about 25 minutes my front tire flatted (probably due to the low pressure I was running). As I took my free lap it seemed the front group reshuffled, and there were about 10 riders. For the next 20 minutes I worked minimally in the break, and with 15 minutes to go I started attacking like crazy. There was a headwind on the hill, so if you couldn't get a gap the field would just follow you. I was never able to make separation, so in the last couple laps I stopped with my attacks and waited for the sprint. There were a lot of turns leading into the finish, so my goal was to be first into them. I misjudged the distance to the turns and thought the headwind was more of a factor than it was, so I came into the turns in 6th and finished 6th. I had fun doing an aggressive race but made an error on the last lap. Today we race the 65 mile Oxford Hills road race.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Road Atlanta Circuit Race

The Georgia Cycling Grand Prix kicked off last night with the Road Atlanta circuit race. The course starts off with a tough 12% wall, and then it rolls throughout the backside of the course, heading downhill again and into a false flat uphill to the finish line. The course is relatively easy if you sit in, so I decided to save my bullets for the end of the race. I made sure to be attentive over the steep hill every lap. A lot of people attacked early, but I kept conserving my energy. Finally 45 minutes into the race the break of the day rolled with 6 guys. I was confident I would be able to attack on the hill and bridge to the break late in the race. With about 30 minutes left to race I started attacking up the steep hill and going hard afterwards. I did this every lap through the finale but was never able to get away. I guess a 25 second hill isn't long enough to make a difference, and I totally misjudged the race. I had a great time and sprinted in for 19th place to grab a couple points for the omnium. It is important to take points on all stages in an omnium because the points add up throughout the event. Tonight we race a crit at the Gwinnett Arena.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Tour de White Rock Crit and Road Race

Last night we raced the Tour de White Rock Crit in White Rock. It was a tough 1 km course that was half uphill and half downhill that we raced for 60 laps. The pace started off fast, and a break of 7 riders got off the front really early. I felt good but got to the front too late. Evan and Jonah did well covering moves with Jonah taking a prime. In the finale the break lapped up, and in Canada there is a rule where the peloton sprints at 4 laps to go, and the breakaway riders continue. I ended up finishing near the back of the group.

Today was the Tour de White Rock Road Race. We raced about 80 miles over 11 long (11km) laps+ 6 short (3 km) laps. The long laps had two big climbs/ lap, and the short lap had one climb. This course suited me and I felt good. Oliver got into a crash on the first lap, so that was the end of his race. He helped us a lot by going to the feed zone to hand us bottles. A small break went early, but this course seemed like an attrition course. That means it is smart to stay in the field for as long as possible while riders get dropped off the back. The race played out like this until the final hill on the final long lap where Ryan Roth went off the front with a couple other riders. I had been conserving energy until then, but just didn't have it to go with the acceleration. As we did the final small 6 laps our group splintered. I was in a second group on the road and bridged up to the chase group with 1.5 laps to go, but the group I was in caught that group with a little under a lap to go. Up the final hill I just didn't have the gas. I should have saved that effort for the final climb, and ended up finishing just off the back of the splintered peloton. I had a great time at all the BC Superweek Races.