Thursday, June 14, 2007

Lake Effect TT 06/14/07

I went into this race as a test of so many things and to be honest, its over now and the severity of the course has me quite bewildered as to if I learned anything. Thats not to say I am upset, its a great course that deserves more recognition and entries, though there were 28 or more for its first event. I also went into this race with 4 hard days and 3 recovery days to make up the week. I was anything but fresh and I could feel it warming up. My legs burned and didnt feel zippy and they definately werent liking the endless ups and some very sharp rollers!! But that was a known going in so again, not upset, but it made me a bit worried when I saw the whos who in the entries (Batke, Weeks, Thor, Srorka, Gorman??, etc.). Again, I am so new I hardly know anybody so I have listed who I have raced against and know are fast (Weeks and Thor two of last years State TT champions, Rudy Srorka and Batke are just hammers-period). So to the line and I go out of the gate harder than normal because i have a fast descent to start the course. I hit 45mph and hammer down to the first corner, make the turn conservatively and start the false flat type road that ends with two up rollers. I am surprised because i am going a lot slower than expected, but my HR is red zone but my wattage is only threshold. I decide then its too early to start pushing so I let the speed drop, but keep the wattage at 285 to 355 watts as I roll up. Luckily the first of the downs comes and for the next two miles I am averaging 28.2mph and hammering in my 53/11, which you can guess is awesome fun!! But mile 3 is where this course really hits you with up and up and when it does go down, it is short and steep ,meaning steep up the other side. Also by now Ive caught my 1 minute man and can see my two and three minute men up the road. I eventually catch my 3 minte man and maybe 4 minute wonman as well. My strategy, right or wrong was to optimize speed on the downs and hammer the ups causing a very spiky power curve. Finally through to the last mile and I make the corner, hit the finish hill at 14.6mph and top out across start finish at 20mph. First lap was 294 watt average and 25.6mph pace. Thats pretty fast and BOY do I FEEL it come lap 2. Down the fast descent, but not as fast as lap 1, through the false flat to mile 3 and thats when I am really hurting. I am 1mph slower from mile marker 3 to 4 compared to lap 1 and I can barely make myself push on the backsides of the rollers. I am even thinking I may just blow wide open before I finish this 10 mile TT, thats how bad its getting. So I finally see the last mile and I got to finish this off hard so I go through the last corner, climb the finish climb at 17.5mph and roll across the line at 22mph. But the numbers dont lie. On L2 I averaged only 259 watts and 25mph. For the race I went 25.3mph and finshed a respectable 23:11. Who won? Rudy smoked us with a 22:29 which is a course record I believe and I was 2nd, Batke was 2 seconds in arrears rounding out the top 3. Many thanks to BIke Authority and Rudy and his fine crew of corner marshalls and registrars, timers and the guy who held all the guys bikes before the start!! Very well run to say the least.

This shows a big improvment from Presque Isle where I raced many of the same top contenders. And although I made some mistakes on pacing, strategy and may need some tweaks on position, its a good ride 10 days before the State TT. But I need some serious rest to put all this hard work to best effect. I am whipped and my legs know it!!


Gary said...

Super Job - Keep up the hard work!

Rick said...

wow, nice job...that's something I need to try some day. So do you really think you went out too fast? It sounds like on this type of course it would be tough to "pace" yourself....again, great job and good luck at the TT!