Monday, April 19, 2010

B report for PR

First big pack ride of the season you could sense the nervousness & excitements in the peloton for the B group. A few cyclists (Old Rob W no pun intended with age) right off the beginning had an abundance of enthusiasm & wanted to gap & did. The peloton then rallied about 1/4 into the first lap & caught the lead pair. Nice try Welchie said!! & then he went off the front like an angry warrior!. The main group quickly stretched out & cyclists began battling for mini groups based on how the hills were treating them. A group was forming near the front & a gap was opening up so I made a concentrated effort to catch the back end. When we turned onto Willow road we caught a very proud Welchie that was given his well deserved honour! The front group of 9 men consisted of 3 bow cycle guys, a bicisport rider, myself, a few team jersey riders I didn't recognize & an independent rider. When we turned onto Glendale road the front boys laid the hammer down to establish a discouraging gap. As we finished the gravel section & began our uphill climb to begin the 2nd lap I saw Clark trying to bridge so I pulled out of the main group for a few seconds dropped back & paced him up. We than began turning up the screw again once we took a sharp south turn onto Locheed road. Clark displayed enormous courage to stay in the pack however expended much energy from bridging the gap & got dropped before the turn onto willow road. The main group eased up on the gravel section for the 3rd lap & everyone seemed like they were wanting to recover for the final gravel sprint. On the 4th lap right before turning onto Willow road the Bicisport rider had a 30-45m gap from the other 8 riders. He seemed to not be pulling for most of the ride so most riders assumed weakness however he was strategically playing fatigue mind games & displayed this sabotage late in the course! I decided to bridge the gap & in doing so taxed myself somewhat & left what was most likely my last energy for the sprint if the main group caught back up. We had the gap but our legs didn't hang on & we swallowed our pride & faded back into the back of the group. Onto the gravel section for the 4th lap. All hell broke loose. Everyone attacked & there was now 2 lines to follow & I was near the back & kept hopping from whichever line looked stronger. The 9th rider popped off the back & there were 8 of us to determine the glory of the first hosted Speed theory PR B cyclists! 5 riders got a gap & left me in 6th place trying to bridge. the 2 riders behind looked like they were fading however as soon as the gravel ended & the uphill finish began they put the hurt on me. I tried letting it all out on the sprint but had nothing left & finished 8th place. All in all a hard course & a well fought first season battle for Speed theory! Jevon


Mark said...

Hey Jevon the independent rider was probably me (orange jersey). Great racing - I should have tried to borrow a ST jersey though!

Clarke E said...

Thanks for the help on the bridge Jevon. You're right, I did spend too much energy trying to bridge from about halfway through the gravel section until when you pulled me into the group on the hill. I was definitely feeling bagged on Lochend when I all of the sudden couldn't hold on anymore and watched as your back ends kept getting smaller and smaller.

I ended up getting passed by the chase group on Willow Way, however Thomas was kind enough to say hi on the way by :).

I then had a lonely time of it for a while until I found a group in the gravel section of a RMCC guy and a few others. We had a go of trying to chase down the chase group, but we were kind of dysfunctional. I must admit that I played a part in that since I was still recovering from my attempt at bridging on the first lap.

The RMCC guy and myself ended up chasing down the chase group by Lochend on the 4th lap. Thomas and one other guy were already off the front by the time we got there though. So it was a race for 12th with a group of about 6 or 7 including Chris and Carl from ST. I was dumb enough to lead the entire gravel section thinking that I could drop everyone. It almost worked, but two guys were with me at the end and I provided the perfect leadout for my RMCC friend and another guy who blew right by me.

Good enough effort for a 14th place finish I guess. It was quite an interesting race.

Thomas said...

Haha, you must have been in some kind of oxygen debt man. I said "Hey Clarke, get on my wheel".

Anonymous said...

Thomas you threw down an impressive performance going off the front of our chase pack for as long as you did. The dude you went with had his name on his bike. In my books if you're good enough to have your name on your bike you should be racing A, but that's just me... haha

Jevon Almond said...

Strong effort Mark! no problem we will have matching uniforms for the next race then we can play mind games with other teams!

Clarke E said...

Ha, yeah I must have been in oxygen debt or something, I didn't even here you say to jump on your wheel. I couldn't hold a wheel to save my life at that point anyways.

Carl Miiller said...

Great course - great race. I spent most of the race hanging with the chase pack getting constantly reminded how out of shape I am.
I felt pretty good at the start on the 4th lap so I put in some big pulls hoping to crack the guys with us. As it turns out, it was like that last strength you get right before you die so you can say goodbye to your loved ones.
I got spit out the back about 1/4 lap from the finish. Another character building moment but a pleasure riding with all you fit dude & dudettes!

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