First road race report.

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First road race report.

Postby tuco » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:27 am

Well if you've been keeping up with the epic tale you'd know this first road race should have been last Sunday but a lack of electrons stopped the car starting.

We've almost got this early start thing down to a fine art. The bikes and rack get put on the car (reversed in for a quick get away - no, really to hide the fact the bikes are on the car.) and the bikes locked to the rack. We pack a bag with everything we need and then all we have to do in the morning is wake up, get changed and jump in the car. On the way we have 'Up and go' and a banana and some water. Saves us about 20 minutes in the morning.

We had to head up Herveys Range to a place the army call High Range. It's one of their training grounds for fast moving objects which make a lot of noise so as you can expect it's 50km out of town.

We made good progress until we got stuck behind a 4WD towing a caravan which must have been been lead lined. 25km/h up the winding road to the top stuck behind this almost immovable object. We could have stopped and jumped on the bikes and got up faster.

We arrived and jumped out of the car and Megan promptly froze. I forgot it would be colder up on the range. Megan has a temp reading on her bike computer and it was 22.5C Funny how everything is relative. One person was warming up on the bike with a jumper on! I lived in Shepparton enough years to know what cold mornings really are. I had to laugh at them.

A quick inspection of the course showed it was undulating, winding road with a excellent surface. 11.3km out and 11.3km back. The finish was at the bottom of a long but slight downhill. We rode out two rises and back as a warm up and I wanted to get familiar with what the end of race terrain was like.

10 in the race, 5 adults ranging from 20ish to 47 and 5 teenages, 13-14.
The race starter read out the list of riders but made the mistake of using surnames as 3 were the same. Confusion sorted out we headed of.
Half way to the turn around point I was getting worried about the distance. (It wasn't until after the race I realised I had my computer reading time when I thought it was set on distance.) It was also around this point when I was second in line that the lead rider yelled, "Glass!", and I yelled, "Found it!", as I rode right over the top of it. I spent the next 100 or so metres watches my front wheel for a loss in pressure. Appeared to be no casualties. I wanted to lead around the turn around point because I didn't want one or two of those young whipper snappers surging after they rounded it. The turn was neutral then the most experienced rider in the group call out for us to slow down because one of the youngsters wanted to check his wheel. I was glad of this as I could sense the young guy behind me was aching for me to get out of his way so he could take off so I stayed out in front for longer than normal to hold him back. I found out after the race there was a near accident a bit further back where wheels touched hence the wheel check. All was good so we got back up to race speed.

No incidents on the way back. I kept an eye on Megan to see if she was keeping up and gave it bit of advise as we passed each other. My biggest goal was to make sure I was drafting behind an adult. I was the biggest person in the race. Trying to draft behind the teenagers was like being out in front. I did get stuck behind them twice but managed to squeeze in behind an adult after coming off the front.

The finish was getting closer and the tactics started. The most experienced racer thought he was leading up the final hill and was swinging back and forth across the road trying to break the draft of those behind so he could surge. I took advantage of the swing to the right and surged up a couple of places and didn't allow one of the little fellows to follow the swing - I must remember that for next time! By this stage this leading guy realised he erred and that this was the second last hill. The final hill started and I was in 7th with Megan ahead of me, I couldn't have Megan beat me in my first road race! I passed Megan and another rider up the hill with 4 still a good distance ahead of me. A month ago I would have looked behind and thought, "I've got fifth, I'll ease off and accept that.", but my A/B grade training rides took effect. I was feeling good and even though they were a good distance ahead (because they were already part way down the hill and I hadn't started my decent) I took off after them. I knew I could catch them and I was telling myself I could catch them. I pushed as hard as I could and was gaining quickly. I went up to the largest chain ring and was getting closer and closer. I passed 4th place and was so single minded on passing the other three that I was wondering how I could get around them when they were 3 wide across the road without crossing the centre line and being DQed and copping a $50 fine. As it turned out I ran out of race track and we all crossed together. I still maintain that if I had another 50m of race track I'd have got them.

So I got 4th but I was very happy with the 4th because I showed myself I had the ability to chase down a group who were a good 50m ahead of me. If I had of been 2nd or 3rd instead of 7th coming up the real final hill then I reckon I could have taken it out. It's a pity the second last hill wasn't the final hill because I had myself in 3rd as we went over the top. Yet another learning experience. Megan got herself 7th place 4.15 sec behind me. She was 3rd out of the teenagers and being the only girl around that age she was the fastest teenage girl and only 2.37s behind a girl about 20 Y O.

Race stats :
Distance : 22.6km
Times :
1st to 4th - 41m 45.85s
5th, 6th - 41m 47.63
7th, 8th - 41m 50s
9th - 56m 7.57s
10th - 1h 1m 12.53s

Personal stats :
Ave time : 32.1 km/h (not bad considering it was undulating)
Max speed : 47.8 km/h
Ave HR : 161
Max HR : 191 (would have peaked at the finish
Calories : 661
Enjoyment level : Extreme.

No pictures this week. Now we're in the same grade we can't take photos of each racing and my wife couldn't come because she had to get daughter number 1 to work at 9am.

Next race : Criterium in 2 weeks time and a late 7am start!!! Sleep in.:D

We stayed around to watch the juniors and the start was worth waiting for. The front line had three girls across the road. The one on the right fell to the left knocking over the middle girl who then fell on the girl on her left.
The kids behind thought this was very funny and had a good laugh.
One called out it. "It's like playing dominos." and one of the girls lying on the road called back, "It's not as much fun as dominos."

Richard should be impressed with the length of this post.
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by BNA » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:49 am

BNA
 

Postby MichaelB » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:49 am

Sounds like a good time was had by all.

What level were the "undulations" ?

Cheers

Michael B
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Postby tuco » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:56 am

MichaelB wrote:Sounds like a good time was had by all.

What level were the "undulations" ?

Cheers

Michael B


I tried to look using bikely.com but the maps are a little out of date and still had some of the road as dirt roads.
But it did show them to be about 20 to 40m. Not very high but some had some steepness associated with them and there was a couple of longish climbs.
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Postby MichaelB » Mon Apr 02, 2007 11:59 am

tuco wrote:
MichaelB wrote:Sounds like a good time was had by all.

What level were the "undulations" ?

Cheers

Michael B


I tried to look using bikely.com but the maps are a little out of date and still had some of the road as dirt roads.
But it did show them to be about 20 to 40m. Not very high but some had some steepness associated with them and there was a couple of longish climbs.


20 - 40 metres - that's equivalent of a speed hump !!! Mind you, any incline when racing is probably magnified. The expressway ride we just did had a 200m elevation change at the beginning !!
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Postby tuco » Mon Apr 02, 2007 12:03 pm

MichaelB wrote:
tuco wrote:
MichaelB wrote:Sounds like a good time was had by all.

What level were the "undulations" ?

Cheers

Michael B


I tried to look using bikely.com but the maps are a little out of date and still had some of the road as dirt roads.
But it did show them to be about 20 to 40m. Not very high but some had some steepness associated with them and there was a couple of longish climbs.


20 - 40 metres - that's equivalent of a speed hump !!! Mind you, any incline when racing is probably magnified. The expressway ride we just did had a 200m elevation change at the beginning !!


That's why I said it was an undulating road and not a hilly road.
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