Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday Night - Small ring social road ride 5:45

Our small ring social road ride is currently scheduled on a bimonthly basis:  May 18th, June 1st, June 15th, June 29th. We'll leave from International Bicycle Centers at 71 Needham St, Newton, MA at 5:45 PM.  Come for a chance to meet folks and get the weekend's lactic acid cleared.  We also welcome members of the cycling community - please join us. Rain cancels the ride. Here is the route we will use:   

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Masters Team Scores Another Win At Lake Sunapee

Four Masters 45+ riders lined up at the Lake Sunapee Road Race on Saturday. Conditions were quite pleasant for racing. Field sizes were limited to 75 due to road construction limiting the width of the course at one point. Present were Brian Anderson, Mike Harris, Kevin Young and myself (Doug Jansen).

Several teams brought strong contingents to the race. OA/Cyclemania had at least 10 guys. CCB, Gearworks and Mystic Velo also fielded several guys each. It was clear that nothing would get away in this race if it didn't have an OA guy in it. I had some pre-race communication with one of the OA/Cyclemania guys that they'd like to see me in a break with Stu Abramson. Stu is a formidable climber and know doubt we would complement each other well in a break. Then with OA and IBC teammates blocking, we'd have a high probability of success.

The deal was, my legs were feeling rather poopy. I did eight hours of epic riding last weekend and hit the uber hard Exeter training ride on Wednesday. Great training value, but poor taper technique. I certainly wasn't going to initiate any moves myself.

A little over half way through the first lap, Stu lights it up on the steep wall on Rt 103A. I follow, and so does Keith Button (NorEast), Tyler Munroe (CCB) and Rick Sorenson (Battenkill/United). We drew a large gap. Perfect. We had the right guys represented. It was touch and go for a while, dangling well less than a minute ahead of the pack. We got our act together and slowly began to grow the gap. We never got out of sight on the longer straight-aways though.

Back on Rt 11, we lost Keith on the hills. We're now down to four guys with most of a lap to go. The fatigue begins to set in. Because we never got completely out of sight of the main field, I think non-represented teams kept their hopes up in catching us and worked harder. That meant we in the break were going all out TT pace the whole time. Passing the Cat 4 field was messy. I figured once we got them between us and our main field, we were home free.

I started to cramp up on Rt 103A with half a lap to go. We still had several more climbs to go before the home stretch on Rt 103. I think the other guys were feeling it too, as I sensed coasting or soft pedaling on the descents. Despite being on the verge of seizing up, I came to the front on a couple of the descent to go spin it up as fast as I could. This is one place the chasing field will probably sit up and we could not afford to lose seconds there.

Finally, we reach the high point on Rt 103 before descending to the rotary. We don't see the chasing field, but I know they are just below the lip we came up. We all sat up anyway. I got stuck up front with about 1km to go. I coasted all the way down to the rotary. Still up front. We coast around the rotary. Still nothing happening. We soft pedal into the bottom of the finishing climb. I think we slowed to about 10mph here. Either Rick or Stuart said "so now what?" Nobody wanted to go first. It was one of the more extreme games of cat and mouse I've experienced in a race. Then I think it was Rick that said "hey guys, they're coming!" Oh crap. He launched, I grabbed his wheel. We were maybe half way up the initial steeper part at the bottom. To my surprise, Stuart and Tyler did not respond as quickly. The grade slackens for a bit, then there is one more little steep bit to the line. There's that moment in a race that's like "man, I could win this thing!" - that extreme moment of adrenaline. Should I try to go around Rick now on the flatter part? It was still a ways to the line and he could draft me for several seconds and come back around. If I waited, I was afraid Tyler or Stuart would catch back up. I went for it then. Rick wasn't able to grab my wheel. I had a few bike lengths on him when I crossed the line for the win. I nearly fell over after crossing the line. I no more than stopped and whoosh, the rest of the field came though. If we had dicked around any longer, we surely would have been swarmed.

After the race I talked with a few Mystic Velo guys. They mentioned Mystic Velo and Gearworks put in some pretty serious chase effort. They specifically mentioned Brian was quite effective in disrupting the chase early on. Great work Brian. Haven't seen final results yet to see where Kevin and Mike finished.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Monday Recovery Ride at IBC Newton

Our first Monday Night Recovery Ride leaves this Monday, May 4th from IBC in Newton.  Come for a chance to meet folks and get the weekend's lactic acid cleared.  We'll leave from International Bicycle Centers at 71 Needham St, Newton, MA at 6:00 PM.  Many thanks to George Shaw for getting things going.  Here is the route we will use:
Hope everyone's racing went well.