Tuesday, May 30, 2006

jers, day 3

Another crit?! why did we come down here?

We came here because the money is big the competition is bigger and the races are some of the longest running races on the east coast. Still this it’s a crit, myself and the team can only expect so much out of our self’s. Right in down town Somerville. Closed streets hundreds and hundreds of spectators and temperatures approaching the 90’s made for quite a day. The cat 2 team had high hopes but with 140 guys in the field many of them who had not raced the last 2 day and spent most of there training/ racing in central park banging handle bars made for difficult work for the kenda Raleigh boys. Still $100 in prims and having everyone avoid the 3 crashes was a success in my eyes. The pro race looked like tourcher. Not the speed so much but the field was bigger than ours and over twice and long! It was fun to watch but I’m not a spectator and while the beers were good it wasn’t long before I was yelling tactics and time gaps to my teammates racing. The weekend as a whole was great. Hangin with the team was fun and… interesting as always. On a personal note the legs felt good. I was recovering well in the races and between each day. I road hard and it felt good. my spring season is coming to aclose ad I was a bit retrospective on the way home. I am moving to CO. While this move is very exciting and a new, large chapter in my life and I can’t wait to read... it is scary. I am leaving the security of New England which I have had my entire life. I love my job and my team. I will be back and forth a bit this summer for races, etc… but still, home base is changing and that’s scary. But…. ONWARD! Even better adventures await! Next…

Monday, May 29, 2006

Day 2, NJ

We have a few Jason’s on the team. But one has really come to lite in my mind this weekend. Jay Harp. A young buck from VT. Talented rider and all round nice guy, funny guy. He always refers to everyone by the full name. “Joe Moody are you still hungry? Here have some of my burrito." “Eric kenney how many doughnuts did you eat before the race?” etc… he also will refer to himself in the third person. When he’s tired in particular. "Jay Harp is felling... not so good right now" This may seem not so funny but after riding a bicycle around in a circle for 1:45 covering over 40 miles with your heart rate over 180 the entire time… yah it was really funny.
the soccer team that's staying in the hotel here is also providing plenty of distraction from racing... and I'll leave that at that.

the crit today was hard. More so because we are not a crit team. No sprinter to work for even if we could “work” for him we sat in for the first half (for the most part) waiting for some legs to get tired they did but 4 pairs still had some kick and got away with out one of us. They quickly got a gap that was to far to bridge to. After a few hard pulls from myself Eric Pearson made an aggressive move to the front where 10 guys were splitting away. Joe let us go causing a huge gap. But the group was to big and organization was not there. I felt good. I was recovery quickly and put in some long hard pulls to bring back the breakcouldn'tust couldn’t get “all” of us up there at once. A few guys from our Kenda/ Raleigh team got up there in the waning miles. But with the pressure they were applying I couldn’t move up. When they slipped back with 5 to go the pace slowed and I moved up for one last pull. We got the break close, but not enough. In the end Eric P got 17th. Not bad. But we can do better.
More importantly everyone looked good. We all raced hard and smart. I felt good. Recovery from my efforts, but I just can’t produce that power on the flats for crits.
tomarow that cat 1 guys have the big crit and us cat 2's have a 20 mile barn-burner to deal with, and dispite not being a crit team we're strong and we'll be looking to make things play out our way.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Jers- Day one

A late arrival to our hotel in the land of the… ahh is NJ the land of anything… we’ll come back to that. But the hotel is nice, were all here and feelin ready. The race today was rather selective. There were 2 steep but not long climbs about half way through the 80 mile course. The first one did some damage and the second made the selection. I worked hard early for the team and made the group chasseing “the’ move that was just in front of us after we came off the decent. I was feeling good despite not being aware of the second climb at all. I was thinking I would try and bridge up if our group slowed on a rolling hill which were now coming fast and heavy. Our pace was frantic as the 20-30 rider group I was in realized that this was the split that would make the race. With a team member in there and another one up the road from early in the race things were playing out well.
Then things tock a rapid turn for the worse, for me anyway. I pushed into the red zone up the second climb trying to get to the front. Then just after a teammate and I settled into the group chasing the winning move we both missed a turn. Badly. Hop off the bike get back on grind through the gears back into the red zone and I was back on deep breath now I was feeling the days efforts. Ok ok relax, drink, it was 85 degrees now, I can recover. FEED ZONE!! We were moving over 30 mph, we had 5 guy who needed water, I grabbed the bag. Some one swerved into my handle bars… woowahhah. Ok I’m fine. Stand up on a roller now daggling off the back, opps not with a feed bag full of 5 bottles you don’t, backing the saddle. In the red zone again. “Damb it!” I sat up put the bottles in my cages in my pockets, through the bag and got back to work. The rollers were now in full force. And I was hurting. 10-20 meters behind. So close! after a felw more hills and 10’ I started to crack. They just weren’t letting up! Then a crash in the group stopped a car and a motorcycle in front of me. I had to hit the breaks, only just a bit but it put the nail in the coffin. I was mad. I still am mad. But I am happy. I worked hard chasseing breaks in the early miles kept Joe in front for the first climb. And made what was a top 15 group. But the second hill followed by the missed turn and feed zone mayhem was to much in to quick a secession for me to handle.
Joe made a select group with Jason Bear. They finished 3rd and 5th respectively! The first 2 amature placings. we were all very happy. Everyone road strong and smart, and every one finished safe. Tomorrow is a long crit. 40 miles I think. I am trying to bottle up my frustration in hopes to unleash the twin towers of doom tomorrow or Monday…. I hope.

On another note my teammate has pointed out a few things about NJ that I feel ring true. The traffic circles are very poorly designed, and the girls are very well… designed.
more tomorrow.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Rock star wana be...

This is kinda what the last 15 miles felt like...

Some times you just don't have it. for what ever reason and I have been finding all of them, you just aren't the rock start you thought you could be.
This weekend I raced at the Bear Mt. road race. 98 miles of a heavy course. one long (2-3 miles) climb. small ring but not to steep. and some other rollers. small ring on one inparticular.
the race played out well for me too. or so i thought. after a normal nervous start where someone misjudged a turn, crashed on my inside and hit my bike. and another squirrely guy with some fierce kick back when he stood up. After that it was pretty steady until miles 56-70 where mr Kodak guy and Dave Frattini through down. dropping half the field. on the second mach 1 trip up the climb I was to far back coming around people getting dropped. by the top of the climb I was feeling the effort. trying to recover now the 6th time up the climb which was pretty chill I thought about trying my hand attacking again (i went a few times around mile 60). but figured I should play it cool the race was hard enough. at the top the big boys attacked again. 10 of us responded but only 2 made it. One of them being my team mate Eric P. yes that same one that caused all the pain in GA. he is for real!!
any way the rest of us started to go and after about 45 seconds in the red zone cracked bad! an even smaller group formed about 30 guys that would get even smaller in the last 20 miles.
It was tough seeing the move that I have trained for go up the road and not having "it" in the legs. I cracked really bad and there was no coming out of it. maybe being at the back having to closing gaps the lap before was the reason, maybe I ate something bad, or the restless night of sleep. maybe there was a full moon... uhhh.... somewhere? There was really nothing. Everything went well even the steady increasing pace of the race played out well for me.
I didn't do that bad I guess. my group was 15th- 27th and 5 guys had slipped away from us in the closing km. not bad with only 40 finishing all together out of 100. but still I work hard and I expect allot from my self. at least more than I had Sunday. Its important to remember, myself and everyone I guess, that this sport. All sports when competing at a high level are very, very demanding. And some times its just not your day. The other thing I have learned after many years of competing in many sports is that if you work hard, stay smart, stay motivated, your day will come. It might take awhile but it will come.
Next weekend I’m off to another one. I have done well there before so I’ll look to post a better, more exciting entry next week. one with so good pictures!


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Racing Racing and more Racing...

what IS up with the wind this spring!! Everyday its blowing, every single day! I have kinda had it... of course as soon as the wind stops it will 98 degrees and I’ll be complaining about that even more. I guess I’ll take the wind for now.
lots of racing lately sorry it been a while since my last entry. I have been really busy. My training log is also a bit behind but I will get that updated soon. The double race weekends do wear on me. Everything, the travel, getting ready the mental strain and obviously the physical cost.
last weekend saw the team at the Turtle pond RR and Adelphia grand prix. Turtle pond went pretty well. We placed 2 men in the winning move which went from the gun and got 6th and 9th from the break and 10th 11th 12 and 13th from the field. Not bad. Adelphia was quite a small field. 40 or so. The rain that never came kept everyone home I think. you might think the small numbers would make for an easy race. Wrong. Nowhere to hide. I tried to "sit in" once I was off the back chasseing. and with 8 of the junior national Canadians there it was one of the harder efforts I have done this season. 55 miles of intervals. Ouch! So after about 42 miles of purgatory one the Canadians got a 1 minute gap. A few miles later 7 of us got away, 2 of which where fellow Canadian team mates and sitting of course. We ignored them and drove to the line. I was feeling the efforts of the weekend and decided that attacking before the line would put me in 8th place for sure so I tock it to the line. I timed it all pretty well as the break was starting to shatter but still got nipped on the line by the 2 Canadian guys in the break. I was a little disappointed that I didn't have enough for 2nd place but I realized that they had 9 guys, we had 3 and all despite that 4th place ain't bad.
So I was happy and so were everyone’s our wallets.
this past weekend had us all racing both days again. Sturbridge RR on Saturday and Palmer on Sunday. Sturbridge was… kinda silly. A fast course, easy to sit in and negative racing at best. The course made it hard to get away and with everyone waiting for Mark McCormick to attack and then franticly chasing him made for a rather boring race.
Sunday was still on the negative side and seemed easier than the last few year’s but none the less it played out very well for our team with Joe getting the big win. We did manage to make the race hard enough for a break of 10 or so to slip away in the last 10-15 miles. With Joe “the man” moody up there with Jay “never stops attacking” Bear we were very content. I’ll spare you the play by play but the whole team road real strong. I felt good. And everyone else looked great!
The double race weekends do wear on me. Everything, the travel, getting ready the mental strain and obviously the physical cost. Back at work today and it feels like I have been gone for a week. Looking forward to my bed again tonight.