Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Cat 4...race domination aka and then there were 7

Well I will try and keep this short. The Cat 4 team met before the race and a simple plan was established. Clarke, Mike and Simon were designated "attackers" with the green light for anytime in the race. Larry, Jason and Ed would protect Thomas and Rob who were 8 and 7 points respectively away from cat 3. This strategy was executed to perfection.

Simon started it with a kilometer zero attack. The bunch was not having any of it so they pulled him back after 10 min of hard riding. Immediately a Bici guy and Clarke got of the front, the pack, worn out from Simon's early attack let it go...and go it did. 45 or so km later, after having a very relaxing hour plus of watching other teams pull (with Simon doing his best George Hincapie impression riding on the front and pulling the pack back up to anyone foolish enough to counter attack), the race was back together.

What followed was many many small attacks by Simon, Clarke and Mike (Jason put in one attack as well just for good measure) all the while Rob and Thomas were sitting back, enjoying a mostly leisurely ride. By the last 1/2 of the last lap our frequent attackers Simon and Clarke were a bit tired so the 'protectors' (plus Mike) had to take up more of the chasing - again we kept it all together despite the more viscious (read desperate) attacks from the other teams. Mike says he hit 600+ watts chasing down an attack - all I know is we were going 30km one second and near 50 the next so for me it felt sudden and fast.

With 5 km to go the attacks were coming fast and furious so speed theory went to the front and took over the race. I must admit, I was seeing spots at the 2 km mark when my work was done and I was swamped by the field - word has it we had strung it out long enough that the last 2 km, although fast and furious, were safe and our 2 protected guys delivered the goods. Congrats Rob on the win and Thomas on 4th! Amazing job to everyone - all the team played their role to perfection and took their turn inflicting some pain. I think Rob's reaction after the race says it all. "That was the most awesome race I've ever been part of!" I agree 100% Rob and not just because of the amazing course, excellent race organization (great job Trev) and superb result (mission accomplished, 2 guys to Cat 3 so now there are 7), it was great because it proved we could dominate the race with teamwork.

Here's to amazing team work and lots of fun. I may be in Cat 4 forever but if all the races are as much fun as this I don't think I'll mind.

Larry Welsh


Clarke E said...

That was an awesome race. It was great to be part of a plan that actually worked as planned. It was so fun being on the attack for half of the race, I can't imagine what it would be like to actually be in a winning break and sprint against only one or two guys for the win.

All in all great team work and great finish from our two sprinters. Try not to get to cat 2 too fast! I'll try to make it up to cat 3 so that I can try my best to help you get there next year.

Myles Gaulin said...

Great race report, it almost makes me want to take up bike racing! Except for my allergy to ashphalt....

Thomas said...

In the immortal words of Col. John 'Hannibal' Smith: "I love it when a plan comes together"

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