Tuesday, May 20, 2008

BoB report from Dan.

Getting ready

I was really excited all week and really wanted to get to the race. I was listening to Megadeth all week and thinking about how much pain I was going to dole out and just getting more and more excited.

So I pack all my riding stuff on Wednesday, put the roof box on the van on Thursday and then through all the family and remaining items into the van on Friday. First mistake was to forget to close the roof box so if anyone finds my riding jacket in the northwest on the road, please return to me. So Debby’s mad already because we drove 3 blocks with the roof box open and didn’t realize we lost contents, oh well.

We start driving and everything is good, kids are happy and I’m listening to more Megadeth.

We get to Saskatoon with no news, I call the boys that are there and we plan for meeting at race sign in the next day.

The next day I go out with my Cat 3 missile man cousin from Ft St John and we pre-ride the course, backwards. We were taking lots of notes the whole way thinking that the finish was at the hotel, oh well. Amazing how many broken Pilsner bottles on the ground, looked like Bagdad!

So then more family visiting and we decide to race our family 35 blocks back to the house we were staying at, not sure how that factors in the pre-race warmup as we beat the family van back, only blowing 2 red lights. Still feeling good, still listening to Megadeth.

We’ve now signed in, warmed up again and getting ready to line up. I get out the camera and do some posing with Hans and Franz and get some shots of Steve German getting ready. I was trying to get a shot of Mike just as the holder dropped on his head, I didn’t think it would be good to get that shot of Mike upside down on the road. We had a stiff head wind on the course and the three of us road strong TT’s, Mike was second and I was third.

The next day we got ready for the road race. We did some strategizing and made some quick friends in the pack to help punish the 1st place guy. There were some antagonists in the crowd and we did a real good job of controlling the front. I was thinking that we had changed the strategy to “Lull them to sleep!” when I got my instructions. At 25 km we go to tempo pace. I was in the front and watching the computer, at 25km we hit it and the fist 75 Megadeth songs I listened to kicked in, we broke the pack from the original 50 riders (not sure of exact numbers) to about 15. We hit the turnaround with a solid break in effect and the wind at our backs. I glanced at the faces of the shelled riders and noticed some people weeping and 3 people covered in their own puke, race plan perfect so far. At about 45 km we looked around and took advantage of some good pulls from our friends, then we broke their hearts and launched a pretty hard effort, the group of 15 was now a very solid 4 with one other reaching his limits. We finally shook Father Time and it was battle time. The wind shifted and it was 4 men charging up the last climbs to the finish. It was awesome to see what we did to the Cat 5 group and it was all destined to a sprint finish. A small mix up at the end with course marshals and wrong directions, I conceded at the line because I thought it was the gentlemen thing to do, big mistake on my part as I would learn in the crit.

Final results of the RR was Mike and I leap frogging positions and basically hammering the field. Race plan was perfect and we controlled that race.

The big day for me was the crit because of my nerves and not ever riding one before. I got some excellent instruction from Steve on cornering and figured after 2 laps I was comfortable. Warm up is over and I was handing stuff to my wife when I hear Mike screaming at me. Good thing I was paying attention to the race and not feeling up my wife! I was at the back, in a really bad spot. I had to get into some big gears right away and pound like hell to be a factor. Well after about the 2nd lap I was in the lead! I was thrilled and really excited, again more Megadeth! I hear the bell lap for a prime, then cross the line, I one a prime, how cool was this, what was I worried about, I am a crit master! After getting a small rest the GC leader surged ahead and I wanted to catch him. My legs are pumping and I can’t get that gap. We are hammering, we obliterated the field in 15 laps and reduced the field to 6 riders. There was no one but us and I was on a mission to catch the GC leader. I come around the danger corner and what do I see, he’s on the ground! He slid out of control and now I am the leader again, 2 laps to go! This is my race! I am going to get time bonuses and maybe get close to the guy! One lap to go and just like Lighting McQueen I hit the wall, my heart is pounding, I am throwing up on myself and I’m still in front. Then the second last corner comes and I’m tossed to the curb like an old paper. Godfrey toasts me like a marshmallow at boy scouts. I come across the line with a huge smile knowing I didn’t wipe out and I hammered for 27 minutes of max effort. Then the good news came. I wasn’t in front the whole race, the GC leader took off right from the start and with 6 minutes to go he lapped us. The whole time I’m thinking, in all these photos, it’s me and everyone else is behind me, I’m a super star!

With me getting toasted at the end, Mike bumped me out of second and we finished separated by 2 seconds! It was awesome and what a great experience for my first race.

I really hope that we will continue this in Pigeon Lake, we totally dominated the RR and sent a strong message out there. When we decided to up the tempo it sliced off most of the field and they had nothing. I heard some of the ERTC guys yelling “They’re attacking, they’re going, they’re gone!” Then it was lights out. The second attack was more ferocious and we isolated the GC leader to pull us for at least 4 kms on his own. It was setting up for a great finish.

I learned some really cool things in the crit though. It’s really hard to do a 33 minute V02 max test and it might be good to get some easy laps in there. The guys that past me at the end all thanked me for the work I did and they all said that they could bairly hold my wheel. I had so much fun even though I limped across the line like a beat dog.

All that being said the best draft I got from Mike on Monday was driving from Drumheller to Beiseker when we caught up to him on the highway. So I need some bigger guys to help me along at the next race!

Hopefully we can get some good training rides in because I will be listening to Slayer and Panter for the next 3 weeks to up the ante. The pain train is setting it’s sights on Pigeon Lake!

Take care



Anonymous said...

dano and mike,
you guys rocked the 5 field in sask!

i am glad we had good weather and tough conditions, great training effect!!
i feel a bit fitter now. maybe enuf to hang with paul and jared after their camp week??


Rob said...

Nice work Dan, Mike and Steve!

mgodfrey said...

Dan I was there I lived it all and I still laughed my ass off, what a great weekend! Thanks for being an awesome team mate.

We will great the crew going for Pigeon. The pack ain't seen nothing yet, we did that with just two guys, when we roll out the full crew it is going to be scary!


A-Train said...

Congrats to all on another dominating weekend. Good job boys!

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