Saturday, April 11, 2009

Race Report-Hillsboro 4/4/09

This report is about a week overdue! Woops!!

I feel like this is my coin phrase, but honestly, "There's been a lot going on around here these days.."

Last Fri we loaded up Rachel and Jordan's cars and about 5 of us headed on down to Litchfield, IL, just outside of STL....Sat April 4th was the official kick off to WI/IL race season for me, and I was certainly ready to test my legs and my (lack of) strength with some big names...Many of the top Midwest NRC racers showed up, including a Webcor gal (Rebecca Much), some fantastic racers out of IN, and many of the Kenda girls (my new cycling friends Kristin, Jill, Monique, and some others). Madeleine and Anne from BH were there, too, looking super strong and ready to go!!
Needless to say, the field was stacked and there were almost 40 women in the 1/2/3's race! That's huge!! Bigger than any race I've done in AZ! (which was a bit of a surprise)

Position is key in road racing, and I suppose you have to learn what to do RIGHT after doing it WRONG...Case it point, I didn't position myself right when the gun went off...Rachel and Carrie-Ann, my teammates, and both very strong Cat1/2 women, were right in front, drafting appropriately and ready to follow the attacks by sticking to a wheel...I somehow didn't get in the mix, and tried to jockey up from waaaaaaaaaay off the back!!!?!?!? After about 3 attacks in the first 5 miles, it became a lost cause, I dropped off (along with about 10 others!) and Shelley from Kenda and I TT'd to get back....

We never ended up succeeding in that attempt, rode much of the first 15mi solo, and finally found a group of women behind. They scooped our tired legs up and we continued to work in this pack of women for the remaining 35/+ mi of the race! It was solid, we all worked hard, and all in all, I felt pretty tired and GOOD when it was all over.

The lesson learned: GO FROM THE GUN!!!!! I hate excuses, absolutely hate them...It drives me nuts when people have excuses for "why they got dropped" or "I was sucky today because..." I couldn't hang today because I am not as fast as those chicks, plain and simple! But I plan to get faster, and frankly, I wasn't that surprised! So back to the lesson: I need to be ready to blow myself up and hang on for attacks earlier than 30mi into the race, and that is what I plan to take with me from that race! What separates the pros from the Cat 3's is that they can ATTACK, ATTACK, ATTACK throughout the race, and still have enough for the finish! And I hope by midseason I am able to stick to their attacks!

After we finished up racing, Carrie-Ann, Rachel, and myself changed and ate some snacks, watched our Cat1/2 men finish up, and then headed off to get some food and drive home. Over 10hrs of driving, 4hrs racing/warmup/warmdown, in 36 hrs was a LOT, but I am glad to have done it!


Joanna said...

Mere...I didn't know about half of what you were talking about during the race recap but nevertheless sounds like a great time! Glad you are back in the saddle:).