Sunday, April 09, 2006

Dan's Race Report

From Dan:

"I guess I'll take this opportunity to write a report for the weekend. So first of all, let me start by saying that everything driving oriented in Mass. is a catastrophy. I stayed in Cambridge at my friends dormroom. On the way there, there was one instance where I went down a one way street. At the end of this street, there were only other one way streets, and they all pointed the wrong way!!! I was trapped! With such haphazard road planning, naturally the drivers in this state drive in an equally confused and perilous fashion. . .
but I digress. . .
this is about cycling.

So after following pretty lousy directions, I found the road race and met up with Lori. The start to the race was just as confusing as everything else so far encountered. About 300 some riders from every category gathered into one big formless mass. I stayed around some other C riders to make sure I was in the right place, and before I knew it a start had happened, and we were off. . .and I was in the very back of the pack unfortunately. The yellow line rule was in effect, and with 100 riders, it was awful hard to advance.
The course was very nice with many ups and downs (you know... hills), and lots of really fast sections. Unfortunately, it was FULL of potholes, ditches, and various other obstacles which undoubtably claimed a few cyclists). At the beginning of the second lap, (each of which was 14+ miles, the total race coming in about 45 miles), there was a GIGANTIC crash on the uphill. It separated the field, and with my unfortunate starting position, I was one of those cut off from the lead group.
The rest of the race was devoted to playing catch up, and I did just that. I think I was in about dead last place, and I forced myself to suffer as much as possible until I caught some people. Before I knew it, I had a collected an Army guy and a Umass guy and we started a paceline taking about 30 second pulls. The Army guy had no legs for hills, but was really fast on the flats, so I ended up pulling on most of the hills (but trust me, this was not that much better. . .if it weren't for washington rock repeats, I'd have been in big trouble) By the third lap we caught another group of about 7 riders, and things were looking up.
Anyway, those in charge of this race thought it a good idea to add an extra uphill sprint before letting us finish. When approaching this hill, I thought back to the lehigh crit and the cycling workshop I attended with ted. We had discussed when to attack. Following their advice I waited until we were 3/4 up the hill, and I put the proverbial pedal to the medal. At this point I passed about 5 guys or so, and maintained it most of the way to the end riding next to a really nice guy from Delaware who had this to say: "Well, looks like it's just you and me, ready to duke it out?" . . . to which I replied :
" *gasp*, *cough*, *grunt*, *pant*, "it's. . .all. . .you. . .buddy. . "

He went on to finish of me, but fortunately I maintained most of the space I created on that hill.

After all of that. . .I got 48th??!?!? Doesn't sound so great, but I'm more than happy with it. I had a great time, and I kept my bike up during the race (although I did take an unfortunate spill in the parking lot of all places, re-injuring my elbow in the exact same spot as the Bucknell incident. . .this, I'd rather not discuss any further!)
As for the Sunday crit. I was pre-reg'd, but staying with friends I had a little bit too much fun that sat night. Ended up sleeping in and getting dim sum in the morning. I think it was for the better.
And that, dear team, is my race report.

See ya'll on the road (mountain?) this week.


Don said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Don said...

If there's one thing I learned from Charlie, it's that sometimes the best races are those that happen the morning after a "too much fun" night.

On the other hand, sleeping in and eating dim sum are significantly awesome!

In conclusion, great race report, keep up the results!