Monday, July 16, 2007

Slow and Scary vs. Fast and Fun

Those were the two CAT 5 races this weekend - Slow and Scary vs. Fast and Fun. P-town (read previous post) was a C pace ride compared to the Peake on Sunday. I sat in and barely worked on Saturday's race. I sat back waiting for a strong wheel to go but nothing happened until the final lap. And taking those turns on Saturday with the field in a pack was a scary moment each time around.

On Sunday's race, I didn't get the memo that AJ and Cory would attack on the first lap. I'm glad I clipped in on my first attempt and got a good start as I was 1st wheel of the pack following the 2-man breakaway on the fast and furious first lap. What I didn't realize was that I was pulling for about 10 other riders who sped by me as I gave up my pull and they bridged the gap of the first 2 riders. You're welcome guys. I tried to grab onto Fireman John's wheel but couldn't hold it and I got stuck in no man's land. As riders were falling OTB of the lead group, we managed to get a good 6-man group going including Jimmy P, Martin and Matt (I think) from Fat Frogs, a Casey guy and a guy in a Crawford skinsuit. Some folks worked harder (Martin) than others (skinsuit) but we managed to keep a consistent and fast pace. Taking those turns at 25-28 in a single file was fun. Sure beats the mayhem on the corners the day before.

The lead group stayed away as our pack was working hard to keep it fast so none of the lapped riders (and there were many) wouldn't get a free ride. We kept it up until the bell lap. Around the final turn I was sitting 4th wheel in our 6 pack in a good position for the sprint. I managed to get 2nd in what I thought was the pack sprint. I was calculating that would have put me at 10th. I cooled down for a few laps and found the family. We hung out with the rest of the team for awhile as the next race started.

(caution: whine begins here)
During the P/1/2/3 race, I went over to the scorer's table to see the official results. To my surprise, I posted a 15th. I saw at least 4 riders ahead of me that were lapped riders but were scored in the first group. I talked to 2 of the riders that were lapped and said they and one or two others latched on to the lead group before the last turn and sprinted to the line with them. Fireman John, who finished in the lead group, told me the samething that a few guys latched on during the final lap. Since the results were 'official' already the protest time was over. Oh well, atleast I know where I finished but the results won't show that. Sure wish we had the chip timing for Sunday's race too. That's the second time this year where the results were not right for my races. The Norfolk Classic had me finishing 29 when lapped riders got a top 20.
My wife took a few shots and showed 8 guys in the lead pack and our pack had 6 going into the last few laps.
(end of whine)

I'm happy with my results this weekend (2 top 10's). Sure beats my results last year at this venue when I was quickly OTB and was one of those lapped riders in my 2nd race ever.
The Ironman award goes out to Jimmy P. Jimmy took 5th the previous day at P-town. On Sunday morning he did a sprint Tri up in Colonial Beach. He took 4th overall (out of over 400) and probably 1st in his age group. He shows up in Chesapeake 30 minutes before race time and manages a top 15 (by my results). He must have been hurting because that's the first time I ever beat him in a crit as he usually gets a top 5 in most of his races.
That's it for racing for awhile. If my upgrade comes in anytime soon (what are you waiting for Randy), there are some guys heading to NC for a CAT4 road race in 2 weeks. The PLT TT #2 is at the end of the month. Then we're back here in Chesapeake for the Chesapeake Crit. It's so nice having so many races right in your own zip code.

Cross season is right around the corner. I can't wait.

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