Thursday, August 14, 2008

Concod Crit Masters 45+

Like last year I’ve been concentrating mostly on track racing. Last year I concentrated purely on the sprint events and didn't do some of my favorite Crits to concentrate on my first Masters Nationals. But this year I wanted to be a little more diverse and changed my routine to include more 3-5 minute intervals midweek with Doug Jansen. It seems to be paying off as that extra day of suffering has allowed me to have more fun by doing better in the longer track races. So with my hometown Nashua Cyclone Criterion a couple weeks away I thought I’d give my fitness a good test by entering the Concord Criterion the week before. I’ve done this race a few times in the past and had a good idea of what to expect.

The Concord Crit. is a popular race and I entered the Master 45+ with 57 other riders. The race started off quickly but I moved up to the front within a lap and tried to stay there to watch for any major threats. I found I could maintain the pace on the hill by staying seated, dropping a gear and just spinning up the RPM’s. Most guys stood to accelerate or maintain their pace. My Hr hit 184 regularly every time this happened but I was no worse off than anyone else. There were a couple of premes but I didn’t go for them. Instead I stayed towards the front to make sure that they didn’t stay away and be in a good position when the counter attacks occurred. This seemed to work until 7 laps to go when Paul Curley (Gearworks), Keith Ford (Sunapee) and Peter Megdal (NEBC) attacked and stayed away until the last lap where Peter won by a bike length. Team BOB was doing most of the work trying to reel them back in as the other team mates of the break would block. There were a few surges with 4 to go and I kick it back a notch with 3 to go. I might have let up to much as I really had to work to move up with 2 to go and it was almost impossible to move up with 1 to go. On the last lap I saw a 191Hr at the top of the hill and the group was strung out in a line. I was in about 12-15th place so I put my head down and just told myself to bury myself until the end. I caught a couple of breaths while drafting on the downhill and might have waited one breath to long to start my sprint. I started to accelerate 50m before the last turn and stood at the apex. The rider to my left skipped his rear wheel out badly but I ignored him and kept the power down. I had a good jump and gained places quickly and continued my seated high RPM track sprint. It was a little crazy trying to pass people as everyone spread out across the road but I managed to make my way up to 6th at the line. I don’t know if I had the advantage of coming up in the riders draft but I had a 39.4mph Max. This is my fastest top speed in flat sprint.

So with this being my first real Crit since Stafford Springs I feel good about my fitness and finish and was reminded that it’s all about the last lap. In next weeks race in Nashua I need to be in the top 5 with 2 laps to go and protect my position no matter what. Stay tuned...

1 comment:

JB said...

Nice job!