A good race

PDCC D Grade Wandi 28 June 2013

Contrary to popular belief, I rarely attack on the first lap. I will follow attacks, I will counter or drive another attack, but almost never initiate an attack. Well I did not need to today, Tom took off from the start line on a mission.

Nobody reacted, I was watching him disappearing into the distance. When I thought, why not go join him and make him work hard for a lap or so. We had a big bunch today including the return of the Unicorn Brewery team, so I knew the chances of getting a break to stay away were very slim. I was halfway across the gap, when I noticed a shadow behind me, I swung to the side and Don came through, but nobody else. We caught Tom on the climb up Bodeman Road, Tom slowed, I drove on up the climb not wanting to lose momentum and then there was a group of 3, me, Don and Natalie probably the strongest time trialer on the Unicorn Brewery team.

I could of not been with a better breakaway group, three strong riders willing to work together and work hard. On front, I was sitting on 300 watts and would peel off once my heart rate hit 170. Let the other two do a couple of shorter turns, then hit the front again. The first lap for me was at an average of 37kph, 250 watts and heart rate of 165.

I initially expected to get caught in the first couple of kilometres, but nothing happen, so as we cross the line, I thought we are going to stay away, as long as the Unicorn Brewery team did not chase, I could not see the bunch successfully organising a chase. There are strong riders who could pull us back, but they had to work together which was not a strong point of that group.

The second climb of Bodeman Road had me struggling, I was 5m off the back of my breakaway companions, but expecting to get back on the descent. When 2 riders went past, reinforcements I thought and tagged on. Then the 5 became 7 and next it was gruppo compacto. I rolled down the group and surprised to see that only one rider was missing.

The next lap was at a pretty ordinary pace, nobody was willing to drive the bunch. Next time up Bodeman Road, the bunch slowed at the foot of the climb, not one to lose momentum, I rode around the outside and kept the pace up the climb, down the other side and up Lyon Road, did not cause a reaction, so once my heart rate hit 170, I swung off and dropped back to being ticket collector for the next lap and half.

From the back, you could see every time a rider went to move, another rider would cover them. Nobody was going to get away today. Unfortunately, with all the sprinters still in the bunch, I need an alternative to a bunch sprint. So I decided to attack on the final rise on De Has Road 2.5km from the finish. Simple tactic, fire off, get a break and sit on 300 watts until 500m from the finish and empty the tank. Fired off, got a small break, could not even maintain 300 watts for 15 seconds. Ended up riding at 260 watts with a least one rider on my tail. The attack lasted less than a kilometre, then a Unicorn Brewery rider came past, I got a breather for 60 seconds or so on their wheel. Then I attacked again, my attack was short lived and I was empty and sliding off the back. The bunch them appeared to slow, I managed to chase back on just as the sprint started and I finished on the back of the bunch.

Overall, happy with my performance given my lack of training in the past 6 weeks. I learnt that I need to do shorter terms when in a breakaway and not push my heart rate so high. I also need to train more for race conditions.

One Response to “A good race”

  1. Nick Cowie » That burning feeling Says:

    […] deja vu, Tom took off from the line like a rider on a mission. For exactly the same reason as the last time we raced here, I chased him. However this time I had a few more riders on my wheel. I swung off and saw I […]