Another fun-hard-pain-day of learning in the cycling-crucible!
I came in 18th in the masters 35+ 3/4s. there was a strong pace throughout the race. The main pack kept together for most of the race. Stefano, made a good break at the beginning of the last lap followed by one other rider. Unfortunately for him, the pack caught up in the final 300 metres or so. Again, I made the mistake of doing too much on the last lap when worried about riders getting away. I ended up being the bridge for the peloton and burnt too many matches. (I must add, I wasn't trying to bridge up to Stefano. He was well clear. Just to attacks in the second group.) I didn't have enough when the surge happened. It took me too much time to recover; however, I came through hard at the end. I will do better next time. I just have to trust there are plenty of riders willing to cover attacks.
The open Masters 35+ and 45+ was a really fun race. Sate Champion, Robert Pasco (at least he was wearing a state champion's jersey) was in the mix. Also, former national track champion, Donald Langley. My friend, David Allen, of Mike's Bikes was part of a three man break away that stuck. An SJBC rider made a move on the 2nd to last lap. I bridged up to him but, unfortunately, he was stronger than me. After some solid exertion and screaming lactic acid pain, I eventually lost his wheel - even though he wanted me to work with him.
I allowed myself to get swallowed up by the next group. I got boxed at the same time as Donald Langley made a break with a couple of riders in tow. A few more followed on their wheels. Unfortunately, by the time I got free I couldn't bridge the gap. I ended up time trialling it on my own. I caught an SJBC rider but he was too cooked to help me bridge up. I powered on through the last lap and caught three riders who were in 7th, 8th, & 9th. The group included State Champion, Robert Pasco. As soon as I caught them, Robert Pasco's teammate made a break. I couldn't hold on. I managed to pull them back on the downhill and slight up hill towards the finishing turn. I got on the wheel of the Safeway rider who attacked my bridging effort and powered on by him - a sweet little revenge. I came 9th overall and 4th in the 35+. This was more my kind of race. Hard paced and honest with everyone testing each other's legs out. I will be there on March 16th. Come join me for some more fun-focused-pain!