Mikes Bikes 40th Cat's Hill Classic morgan raines
It was a hot day in Los Gatos, the family came over with me and were to make a day of it, since my start time wasn't till 3:10. We hit the park that has a steam train and carousel it's pretty nice if you have kids. Trying to re park near the race took a long time, so not too much warm up time before on the line. The race start's and it's a strong pace, this course is a route I really like and it work's well for me. Half way around the course is a tight left turn that leads into a wall of a hill dubbed "cat's hill", it's a long block at 23%. I try to pretend it's not really there and just ride hard and smooth. I start the hill in my big ring then around half way carefully shift to my small ring, one miss shift and that could cost you the race. At the top of the hill you always want to "carry it over" your momentum that is over the false flat to the down hill and that starts to wear people down. This is a race you want to ride in the front at, for safety and to have clean fast lines into the corners. Some people were surging a little but no big moves, a strong head wind had arrived on the lower straight section and helped keep most of us together. On the hill I would hit it good then again on the top section and was stringing things out and controlling the pace. After 12 to 13 laps I still felt pretty good besides my back feeling a bit tight, but people were hurting no one except me and one SJBC rider wanted to pull. There was still a half of dozen guys holding pace but when I would make little jumps there wasn't that much reaction, I couldn't tell if people were just waiting or plain tired. Coming into the last down hill I let the SJBC guy in front of me for a little recovery, at the bottom of the hill you have a step right hand turn then about a 100 yard sprint to the finish. Approaching the last turn there's this guy who had been lapped taking the inside line going half our speed, so I surge before the turn to get a little in front of the SJBC guy and take the turn fast and tight so he's forced behind me. The last 100 yards are bumpy and fast pretty hard to pass on. I'm in the drops and start my sprint, i'm in a fast spinning gear to accelerate then shift and kept my speed up, just staring at the line. I don't look back I don't put my hands up just a clean win. One for the team.