Monday, May 12, 2008

Cumming Race Report

Security Bank had a great showing in the Cumming TT on Saturday. The 7-mile out-and-back course was very hilly - there wasn't a flat spot on it. There was a 1/4-mile 6% hill right off the bat, and at the top I was concerned that I'd taken the first climb too hard and blown up. The back side of the first hill was the longest downhill section of the route. As I crested the hill and dumped the rear derailleur into the 11, I heard a clicking sound and realized that I couldn't use my 11 cog. I had changed lockrings, causing the chain not to engage fully on the 11. So a good portion of the ride involved either painful climbing (most climbing on a TT bike is painful) or 120-cadence spinning on the downhills in my 12. Who knows, maybe avoiding the 11 saved my legs for the hills.

Anyway, we had four riders in the top 11 of the Competitive 35+ division: Ron Hill, 11th (riding the Hill Classic and dominating the homemade bike category); Todd Wilson, 6th (ROLLing with his deep sections); Bill Causey, 2nd (powering his neuvo-waifish 6'3" frame over the hills); and I won it - my 1st ever win - finally.

Christian finished well (find out why). He was 6th in the Pro-Am, and was the top 'Am.'

I had fun in the Masters RR (had to leave early and couldn't race the Comp 35+). Sitting in the field was not too difficult - a little harder than a fast Competitive division race, but there was lots more activity up front. There was constantly one or two groups of two to four riders going off the front and others trying to bridge. That kept the field in a long single- or double-file line much of the time (unlike the Comp division). There was a 2- or 3-rider crash in front of me on the 1st lap, but I went around it. About 8 or 9 riders eventually got off the front (I didn't know it at the time). On the 2nd KOM I worked with a Jittery Joes rider to pull my way up to a small group (he did most of the work). I looked around soon after and I was in a group of about 7 riders - but because of all the carnage I didn't know if I was racing for 15th (accurate) or 55th. I guess we were in a chase group, but I never knew it - and I guess the others either didn't know it or had no more gas. I guess it was just what was left of the peloton. That was the biggest difference about the masters race - it became hard lots of times, but I never got the 'oh crap I'm about to be dropped' vibe from the group. It seemed to be more of a silent, controlled aggression, if that makes sense.

We weren't going fast in the small group, so I knew we would soon be joined by others behind us. I didn't have the legs, myself, to go off the front of the small group, but tried to go with every surge hoping to get separated from the small group, but nothing ever gelled. In retrospect, I should have made much more of an effort to get away when the group lulled - I think I could have done it. I didn't know at that time that there were only 8 or 9 riders in front of us. We were eventually caught by a few other riders from behind, swelling the group to about 16 riders. I finished last in the field sprint with toasted legs in 24th, but had a fun race. I'm sure I have more Masters field racing in my future.

1 Comment:

Peloton Camden said...

Robert,

Congrats on the TT win! Your hard work finally paid off. I made it down for the Cumming road race on Saturday and was anticipating doing battle with a slew of Security Bank riders but only had to contend with 2. You missed a pretty good race that got really interesting in the last 3 miles from the finish. I ended up getting 5th and should've been a little more aggressive at the 200m mark as positions 4-2 were attainable.