Monday, March 17, 2008

Menlo Park Tri-Flow GP, Cat 4

Your standard 4 corner office park crit, should be easy right? Not even close. Dennis said this race should be for the sprinter, so I get all excited. This race ended up being a constant barrage of sprints out of corners and full road wide rider blocks which made moving up hard. My race avoided the really hard crashes that plagued the later races and sent one too many riders on a one way trip to the hospital. I played this race *WAY* too conservatively, spending a majority of the race in the back half hammering hard out of the turns to just stay on the pack. Unfortunately, no one made any hard attacks and the field slowed constantly enabling pretty much everybody to stay on. Last lap, pace picks up. I moved up a bit and went into the final straight watching the winners sprint it out. Not one to go out easy, I tried hard and was able to pick up a number of spots to end up 25th. Not too bad, but I could have raced a lot better. What I really enjoyed was coming back with “my” golden retriever Ballast and getting to watch and cheer on Larry, Dennis and Vlada for their race. They all raced very well with Dennis placing 10th (watching his sprint never gets old, it’s impressive!!!!) and Vlada and Larry playing excellent team mates! We had fun chatting it up afterwards, seeing my friends not get involved in the crashes, and meeting the families of my teammates. What did I learn? Energy spent to gain position is worth energy lost for the final sprint, in spades!!!

After my race I went on a great ride through New/Old Almaden to Hicks road and into Los Gatos, what a day to be on the bike. Got 30+ miles to add into my 20+ or warm-up and racing. If anyone wants to try something new, I know a lot of rides through Marin and Los Gatos that would make even coach Edwards and Jim “Monster Man” Langley seem mortal =) (I think!!!)

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