Monday, June 1, 2009
Amphib Racing picture by Lydia Netzer
That's a race! I did the Bryan Park race today with a 75 rider field that was star-studded. The 1.8 mile loop was tackled 26 times for more than 40 miles of good, old-fashioned bumpy critin'. The race started about as slowly as possible and guys were low-swinging for the spots that mattered when the hitting began. I thought that the last third was best(not by choice, but by dumb luck and a dropped gel). I did not feel like the bad start was putting me into to much difficulty, so I took the time to figure how the pack was morphing each lap. I saw three possible spots to move up without adding danger to an already sketchy place.
For the first half of the race, I was completely a passenger on a rollercoaster. I began to get POed about that role(good for others/not me). I took my three spots and got up to the front in two laps(probably too quick from where I was). While there, I could see the break of 5 drop to three as two guys up there crashed hard! I did a little to get up and across, but it was(admitingly) half-hearted and exhusting. I assumed my position as the red lantern.
It was at this moment that I noticed that Jinks was absent. He had been my motivation and bulls-eye the first half of the race. I might also point out that he was surfing up there a good 20 spots ahead of one Johnny "The Cat" Sundt. Great job Jinksy. With two to go, I was sitting 5 from the back and not getting anywhere on that crowded course. I really needed some calories right then and felt light-headed from that dropped gel in the 1st frakin lap.
I took some calculated riskes in my three movement spots and watched for exiting riders through the field and found my way up,inside the top 30 for the bumpy sprint. I wish my position for the mele at the end was better, for I had to break twice in the sprint. I finished in the top 15 and felt pretty good given the field size on that fractional course.
The lessons were many in the race too. Six major things to watch or do better.