Off to the Races!! -- Log
This past weekend was the 2006 BC Track Provincial Championships, over in Burnaby, BC! Fun track, indoors, 200m, wood.. Lotsa great racing, nice to see and chat with all the Vancouver racers, and i was pretty happy with my performances! =)
Full results can be found here, and i've posted some pics of me here. Details below!
National sprinter Matt Barlee and myself (thanks again for the ride dude!) arrived around 5pm, giving me lots of time to spin around trying out my aerobars on this very different track. Luckily, it's not too difficult, and i got into the swing of things right away! Found a neat technique too, which involves tipping your head slightly as you enter the corners...definitely helps in keeping a straight line. Overall, i was feeling pretty speedy, sustaining relatively high kph's without really feeling it....
(Side note: i was sick and off the bike for 5 days a few weeks prior, and then took around 10 days to being able to ride with any intensity again....really screwed with my training plans, but still somehow ended up with fairly speedy legs for the race..)
The first evening held the Flying 200m sprint qualifiers, which i passed on, and an open Chariot race, which i jumped in, just for fun. Didn't qualify for the top seat of course, and finished second in my heat with 6t overall. Don't mean to complain, but didn't really like the way they held the Chariot there..in Victoria, it's one lap (333m), so it's all about start and GO! And is over quick.. They had 3 laps there (600m) and so is really no different than a bunch match sprint... I think the point is to mix it up with different races! Some guys rode it out like a matched sprint, cruising the first lap or two..heh..good thinking!
Anyway, got a nice warm-up for......
Arrived nice and early, logged a few more km in the aerobars. Relatively easy day for me, just had the Pursuit and Points race. =)
It's a different ride from Victoria's track... 20 laps instead of 12. Also, being indoors, means no wind!! With so many laps, it also feels 'easier' to ride, as you're so focused on the upcoming corner (somewhat tricky to navigate) that you notice the pain a little less!
There were only four people participating: one of Canada's top guys, Scott Laliberte, speedster Murray Solem and my regular foe (hehe) here in Victoria, Mike Chandler.
My main strategy was to not go out too hard, then just pound it. And pound it some more. And so on. 5 minutes and 22 seconds later, i had a new PB! 5:22!! Woohoo!! I was totally stoked!! So stoked, i'm even somewhat doubtful... How could i have dropped 15 seconds from my previous PB just a few weeks ago? I'm half guessing that they missed a lap, and half guessing that i had a *fantastic* ride...so i'm gonna 'keep' it. =)
Workin' it! My time meant i averaged 44.7kph. Scott cleaned up 10 seconds ahead of Murray with the winning time of 5:05, sustaining 46.6kph..yowzah! Mike rode it in a bad gear, and knowing that the positions for finals were set (ie, me vs him), didn't give it 100%.
My only other event on Saturday, 80 Laps / 16km of twisty, sprinty excitement. I snuck in on the first sprint, getting one point (vegan power!! haha) and then it went downhill as the three Campione guys (John Perkins, Scott and Murray) proceeded to teach us how team tactics can control a race. The two Fast Twitch riders, Glen and Matt, were quick to exit, leaving Jeff Ain and myself to soak up the punishment on our own. I ended up getting lapped twice, and Jeff once... Brutal affair..but i finished intact. Thanks to Scott zipping by not once, but twice, and pulling me back to the pack to avoid even more lappage..hahaha
Anyway, that race killed my legs. Went to the place i was staying, and took it easy.
Felt pretty good, despite the punishment i gave myself the day before. First up, the Kilo!
Not much to say, i had a pursuit after, so didn't plan to go out 100%. Basically used it as a warm-up for my Pursuit, and rolled in a 1:20.5, maintaining my goal of keeping it over 1:20. Pretty cool, since my PB from last year was 1:19, and i *killed* myself like i never have in order to get that....but alas, Kilo is not my event, but it is nice to know that i'm stronger!
This was against Mike, and for the Bronze...woot! I went out fairly hard, and legs were hurtin'..yesterday was still in them. Still, managed to keep Mike at bay, finishing at a respectable (for me) 5:36 (which also beats my PB of 5:37), three seconds behind Mike... It seems like such a small amount of time, but i couldn't have given it much more..i might have been able to ease off on the start a bit, but it's hard to say. Anyway, i was very happy with my performance! Looking forward to Pursuits in 2007! Will be a big part of my focus in training through the winter.
I managed to mix together a rag-tag bunch of riders to compete in the 4km Team Pursuit (same as the individual pursuit, but with three other teammates!) Jeff Ain and myself had been talking about doing this, so we were already paired up. Chandler was sticking around, so we reeled him in, and Jeff got Matt Potma, a very strong Junior rider, to join us. We warmed up, and rode well together, despite all of us lacking any experience riding like this. (It's really weird riding a paceline in aerobars unless you've done it before!)
We knew we didn't have much of a chance, praying for mechanical failures for both the dreaded Campoine boys (Scott, Murray, John and their strong junior, Nathan Macdonald), as well as Team Symmetrics, BC/Canada's premier bike racing team, with TT powerhouse Svein Tuft. They did it in a rather unique way as well: Marsh Cooper lead out for the first three or four laps, then pulled off completely, leaving Svein, Christian Meier and Cam Evans...and for the final three or four laps, Svein held the front, and finished at 4:46, sustaining over 50kph. The Campoine's finished with a respectable 4:54, and i completed my fastest 4km Pursuit with the rest of 'Team Dog's Breakfast' (not my name suggestion!) in 5:16, keeping our speed around 45.6kph.
I gotta say, i really enjoyed doing the Team Pursuit....need to arrange more of these in Victoria. Could even have a special event of just these with other local teams and riders..hmmm...
Funny note about the Symmetrics team - Svein recently rode 4km in 4:36. Insane that he's 10 seconds faster *by himself*!! Rock it, Svein!! Maybe some day my little vegan legs will be able to spin that hard!
Ahh..my specialty. Once again, my special Keirin mojo kicked in and i made it to the finals...this time there weren't enough rider to bother with qualifiers, so we just went straight to the final. Taadaa! (Note: for some reason i keep making it to Keirin qualifiers in every event, despite not being the fastest or strongest rider..it just 'happens'!)
Jeff the durney motors by, Matt Chater (likely winner) gets his wheel, so i jump on his, and establish myself in the 2nd position. Woot!! Murray pulls up beside me and rides *close*. I'm rather nervous, just thinking to myself "i only want to make it through this, so i can compete in the upcoming scratch race!!" Eventually, prolly around 40kph, i have to submit, and slide back, allowing Murry to take Matt's wheel.
I'm back in the same position, as Glenn is now riding beside me, but i hold tight, with the hope that he's too nice of a guy to take me out..heh..
To keep a short story short, the sprint starts, Matt and Murray rocket off, and Glenn and John battle for 3rd/4th, as i watch from a safe distance behind. Yay me for surviving, and finishing 5th in this BC Championship race. =)
And in all this i still managed to somehow get myself up to 60kph!
I lined up with five other riders...and they announced the 75 Lap Scratch race.
WHAT?? 75?? For some reason i had assumed it was a shorter race.... I wasn't prepared for another long race! Eeep!
Once again, the Campoine mafia ruled the race, and with 20 laps to go, Glenn and i were lapped and eliminated.. Which really sucks, i *hate* to DNF. And considering that this was a BC Champoinship race, and four riders left riding, there was really no reason to pull us from the track..it wasn't like we were caugh 5 laps in, and it was going to be repeated over and over. I think this was a really crummy call by the commissaries, and totally against the spirit and the sport of cycling. Props for Jeff for hanging in with the Blue Men and finishing. (Well, getting lapped by two riders, and being considered to have 'finished' Funny how rules can change...) And, of course to Scott, Murray and John, who rode like pros. Watch out if i ever get a posse of mean, green vegans. ;)
So that was my weekend! Also rode the TT last week, got an expected terrible time (27mins), but at least got some nice pics.
Check back in a few days, i believe there will be more pics from the Provs, and i'll post some more stories. =)