AJ - unfortunately, there is a strict grading policy in place so you cannot self promote. You have to get a win and a place before you can go up a grade.
Don't know if you race SKCC often, but the start of the season usually has a few muppets around and it usually calms down after the first month or so of racing. Bunch sizes should also decrease a bit, but that's often dependent on the weather conditions and what other events are on at the time. If there's a comp on (such as crit sprint champs last year) it can be super messy and you really have to ride defensively.
Overhearing the E-grade post race brief yesterday, it sounds like they're letting a lot of the E graders up into D next week as well due to the massive influx they had for the first race - hopefully this won't mean bigger bunches and even more muppets in D!
STCC 40 km (37 km)Handicap, was suppose to be a graded scratch but due to low numbers it was decided the race would be a handicap.
I raced C grade as a result of an over indulgent winter with the idea of supporting my partner’s weight gain (pregnant) by doing the same, I went from 84kg to 97kg - ouch. In saying that through the month of September I got my but into gear, rode 1000 km and in the process dropped 6kg, still 7kg heavier than I should be.
Anyway to the racing. E grade had 1 rider, D had 3, C had 3, B had 2 and A had 1. I can’t quite recall the time gaps but D had 3 minutes on C and C had 3 minutes on B.
We set off and got right to work, 30 or so seconds on the front then just rolling off. Every so often I’d stay on on the front a little longer for the extra work. This continued for about 13 km until we reached the first of two climbs for the day. The first climb wasn’t particularly long at 1.9km and we decided we would ride it within each other’s ability, this suited me well. Following the first climb was a nice descent, which was timely as it provided the right amount of recovery before we tackled the next climb. This climb was even shorter at 1.5km but had a 600m section at 10%, again we climbed together without anyone appearing to be under any great strain. About halfway up the climb it turns 90 degrees to the right, this enabled us to see D grade for the first time, which one fellow had been dropped.
Over the top in the big ring and again onto a long flowing up and down descent. Shortly after we caught the D grader who had been dropped. He jumped on and stuck there like glue, none of us minded and he was happy as he was being towed back to his D grade counterparts. I also believe in a handicap it is the lower grade’s unwritten right to sit on.
We caught the 2 D grade riders with what I thought was about 10km to go, Garmin said 30km ridden. Our group (3 C graders) had worked very well with no one shirking the issue. For the next 6km we dragged D along the undulating road back towards the finish line. I had plenty left in the tank and was working out what I was going to try. I’d made up my mind I was going to attack with 2km to go and try to TT to the win.
The time had come, so I soft pedaled what I thought was going to be my last turn on the front just to get that little bit extra time of recovery for the ensuing 2km effort. Then all of a sudden one of the D graders came flying up the outside and I thought, what a bugger, he’s got the same idea as me. It didn't take long for one of my C grade companions to wind up his speed also, you beauty someone else is chasing him down. This looked very much like a sprint and it was, 200m up the road was the finish line. Didn't panic, whacked it into a gear or 3 harder, stayed in the saddle, then full gas out of the saddle to reach a wheel, not right on a wheel but I had way more speed than the guys in front, I coasted for 2 pedal rotations as there were no safe gaps then a gap opened and whack, full gas again, around on the inside, accelerated well clear of the pack 10m+ and coasted over the line for second. The solo E grader took it out.
Strava tells me the sprint was a peak of 1708 watts, 1500 for 5 and 1467 for 10. Felt good and am looking forward to the next race.
They're actual power numbers via the SRM, I can see how one could be mistaken by the way I wrote that.
1700W seems more than a liitle high for C grade club racer. Cav reportedly only puts out around 1600W in a sprint. I'm only C grade and I think my max has only been about 850W (not that my power or lack of is anything to go by).
Racing is not all about power. Through Cav's own admission he would probably not be there on power numbers alone. It's take dedication, hard work and a lot of mental strength, an area in which I lack. Also I don't have a great deal of endurance, which is where the hard work and dedication comes into it. I get popped on most sustained climbs and I just don't train consistently enough not to get dropped. I bought the power meter with the vision of doing just that. Anyways here is my power curve, as you can see it teeters off dramatically after about 1 minute (720).
Currently at 91kg... Raced C grade here but no mention what he grade he was racing before the indulgent winter and subsequent weight gain.
Nice work doggatas.
Raced B grade for a 3 races when I was fit(ter) managed to win one of them.
Nice job on 2nd Dogga! Also very impressive of the E-grader to solo 37km an hold on to win!
The power numbers you have roughly correlate to the power to weight ratios of a mid-pack A-Grader I know. Maybe it's time to go back up to B grade and stop blaming overweight and/or lack of training for dropping a grade
..aaannd that's the bit that sucks about bike racing (i'm in the same boat). Great power for winning sprints, but you go out the arse as soon as the road points even slightly skyward! Good luck!
you can't be good at everything. i can climb a bit and am clearly blessed with more slow than fast twitch muscles, but i would lose a sprint to the stocktake sale section at Dimmeys against old ladies.
My first race back after quite a long winter break. Monday’s race at Beaumont Road was the chosen venue for my re-entry to racing after a couple of months winter break. Decided to go in C and just see if i could do more than just hanging on. It was a good turnout for the race with maybe 15-20 riders in the grade. I was never in trouble and the accelerations out of the turns were easy to handle. After 25 minutes or so in the pack i decided to put a bit of hurt in, moved to the front, upped the pace and sprinted out of the next corner. It seemed to be that i hurt mostly myself and i quickly went back in the pack. For the rest of the race i just followed wheels, moving up and down the bunch. I’m not a sprinter so just went with the bunch and ended 7th or 8th. Happy with the result, race fitness still a way off and more hard interval training needed if i want to have a chance in dropping/hurting the fat sprinters.
36.3 km/h avg
Took a drive down to the GC for the Sunday crit.
Got my number, then thought hmm what grade am I? Computer says you're in C - 'Crawf (computer) says No', requested a bump into B and rolled off to warm-up on the velo Track.
The course is a blast with only around 300-400m of flat, the rest is undulating with sweeping corners and a tight hairpin at one point, quite technically overall and not one for the campers.
The club mixed it up a little moving the finish to the top of the hill, excellent - this could suit me a little better as I'm certainly faaaar from a 1600w sprinter.
50mins plus 3, not much happened until the Prime approached, I lingered around the top 10, did the odd turn, a few tried to get away but never really gained more than 50m or worked together.
As expected the pace lifted for the Prime, I was about 3rd or 4th at the base of the hill, moved to the drops and started the sprint, those in front blew up and I moved clear, glanced left & right, had a few lengths so sat up and took the Prime. Seconds later the first serious attack came, a local rider jumped off the front and went solo, he had about 50metres initially, I didn't chase, was still sucking in the big ones from the Prime, no one did either.
He gradually went out of sight over the next 10mins, what seemed like some unrelated teams to the solo rider started to slow the pace even more on the corners, something wasn't right, couldn't figure it out.
Got fed up with it and tried to spice it up, maybe they wouldn't chase me? Got about 100m and had been out there for around 3 laps, was doing about 40w over threshold so not really sustainable and starting to get a spew urge.
Spotted some riders bridging fast, eased up a little when they got close then realised it was bloody Robbie McEwen and some A graders just overtaking me, ahh bugger +1 for ID numbers on the front
Glanced down at the race time and there was still probably 5 laps to go with my power starting to drop, so I sat up to rest and try for the final sprint for 2/3/4. I so wish I had dug deeper and jumped with the solo rider.
So now the battle for 2/3/4 moneyz, the last half lap coincided amongst the C graders, what a sh*tfight, I was around 5th wheel, trying to figure out who a had Blue number and where I was, I kicked off my sprint just before the base and was all over the track weaving through C grade, was making up some serious ground then it computed who 2/3/4 were, gaining, gaining, then potential 4th blows up dramatically and I nip him by about a metre, the other 2 just a few metres ahead, if only there was another 20m, I was still going strong - always the way. Oh well double earnings isn't bad.
So I've just found my fav new crit track, but must pay more attention to the PM on those solo efforts.
38avg / 37km / 817elev / 286w
Nice report and top effort! Might have to check out some of these GC races, the Pimpama course looks interesting too.
First crit at Wyong. Massive turn out with big groups in all grades. Quite some burglars as well, but the ones who got discovered got moved to their true grade. I felt really good and was never put in any trouble. Maybe the speed and accelerations are easier to handle in a bigger bunch ? At one stage we even had ourselves a little break. After the initial burst we (3 riders) all kind of looked at each other to see if we could make it stick. Unfortunately we had to go into the brakes as a car turned in front of us, taking all momentum out of it. Back in the group. The 2 laps to go sign came quickly (33 minutes race) because of deteriorating light. I was near the front in the last lap, but slipped back a bit as for me it’s no use contesting sprints. Finished in the bunch. Very happy with the ride. Maybe next week we’ll ride more aggressive.
Wanted to ride HEZ on Saturday, but needed to go to my daughter’s 11th birthday party, which was good fun as well.
Sunday, i fully understood why people ride at stupid times like 6.30am instead my 10am : 35C and massive winds greeted me and made for a very hard ride.
SKCC D-Grade Criterium
avg. 38.5kph, 28km
Good race on the weekend, with numbers slightly down on last week, with maybe 40 odd in the bunch. Rider behavior was also much better and I only saw one guy make some silly moves in the last two laps - due to not being aware of his surroundings.
Last week I went out trying for breaks throughout the whole race and tried to jump onto every break attempt that went away. This week, I decided to just sit in and go for the sprint.
The race was fairly uneventful with the first 10mins relatively fast before settling down considerably. Last 10mins picked up a bit with some fast laps and frequently going over 50kph as people tried to get away - I just sat in out of the wind and conserved the whole time and was feeling relaxed and comfortable.
The group stayed together until just before the last lap, when a guy jumped off the front for a flyer. Learning my lesson from last week, I didn't give chase and continued to sit in. As we came up on the final corner (250m to go), the guy still had a 50m gap on the bunch and there was no way we were going to catch him as he was still firing! *bugger* I rounded the final corner in 4th position and as the guys in front fanned out across the road I jumped out and took second by a bike length!
The guy up the road finished with a 20m advantage on the bunch kick, so he must have pulled out some big numbers over the last lap and a half!
In the pre-season I tried to up my km and increase my cadence for sprinting - fitness is definitely improved and I managed to hit 55kph in the sprint without fully winding up, so both aspects seem to be paying off!
Was good to finally be in the money after a 3rd at the start of this year and numerous 4th's and 5th's over the past year! Hoping I can get a win the the next few weeks and go up a grade.
Nice work Cerb.
Did C grade at Coburg on Saturday- finshed in the bunch without much effort. I reckon its much safer than SKCC due to smaller bunch and wider corners. Although a girl in the bike gallery top nearly took out someone else with a huge serve. We caught B grade who were playing cat and mouse. Such a fast circuit ! Bit my tongue after the race when I saw her...
Haven't raced out there, but I do hear it's a nice course - even with some downhill into the finish? Sounds good to me! Will have to come and try it sometime - just can't be bothered traveling the distance out there when SKCC is only 10mins from home!
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