The whistle blew and I took off like it was a mountain bike race. After two years off from racing and fairly recent back surgery I was just happy to be racing again, so off I went! This course favored a bike handler, someone who loved to corner with speed.
The morning started early, setting up and parking before the races started.
Not only was I stoked to be back racing but I was very happy with my new prototype RaceDots arranger/holder/applicator. While the big market for my product is runners (who won’t need this thing) I am a cyclist and I want fellow cyclists who supported RaceDots to use them! Even while wearing ultra-sheer skin suits. This new thing works like a charm by keeping the hard to use magnets from bunching up (something that cyclist friends have found frustrating). So even tho the skin-suit-wearing-crowd accounts for about .01% of those buying RaceDots, I feel the problem will finally be solved and these people (my people) can both stop telling me about RaceDots being hard to use and stop putting holes in their over-priced skin suits! Win win.
Back to the race: I was on the front the entire first lap and then some guy blew past me yelling something as he went. I looked back and no one seemed interested, myself included. So off he went, solo. I sat into the bunch and about 20 guys came around me. I got my heart rate back down, paid close attention to those around me in the corners and I started to push towards the front again only to see that solo guy was now joined by 6 others and a big gap between us and them. I was instantly furious. Who let that happen 3 laps in? I leapt out of the pack and buried the needle chasing after them with one guy following me.
We spent a good bit of time dangling off that break, leaving the pack two turns back. But the break was not slowing down and the guy with me was. I pleaded with him and encouraged him but his pulls in front got shorter and the chasing pack grew closer. We went from being 100′ behind the break to 100 meters but I kept trying my heart out.
I knew damn well I don’t yet have any real fitness after 2 years off, so that was it. 8 laps in no-mans land before we were pulled back in – right about the time the break lapped the pack. That’s racing. I enjoyed the awesome course for the rest of the race, leaning into those perfect turns and feeling the bike do its thing. I sat up before the sprint for 8th place, I must be getting wise in my old age. Huge thanks to Evo Cycling and PTS Racing for such an awesome event.
After my race I was happy to hang out and watch the rest of the day. Such a fun part of racing is seeing good friends and making new ones. I handed out some beers to tired, sweaty racers and had a couple myself. I chatted with our local official Mimi (who’s just as well known nationally) as well as other racers new to the scene as well as old campaigners. Joe Jefferson was calling each race with some great one-liners, “That pack is strung out like a runway model!” Lots of dogs came to drink from our water tub and I was stoked taking it all in. It finally felt like summer.
With me were some wonderful people from Lindsay VW and my teammate Mat who was going to do his first ever crit. We got Mat a solid warmup and chatted with Lindsay GM Jerry who is also an accomplished cyclist (and owner of a new puppy)
Mat got pulled but thankfully not from a crash. He’s hooked on racing now and soon will begin training on a more regular schedule. As always thanks for reading and we’ll see you at the races!