Sunday, September 10, 2006

Today's crit - NCA Grand Prix

Matt Farnham, Tim's little bro, is right behind me and I have his mom, Jean, to thank for this pic.
I reported on "Summit" the nicest dog I've met for a while and demonstrated how to entertain oneself during a long elite rider race, but I haven't yet told u how today's women's race went. In short, there were only 3 of us and we opted to up our time from 35 min to 45 and race with the men's cat 4 altho our awards were separate.

I won the open and Janna won the cat 4.

More interesting ...

"you don't win races by crashing. It's part of the game but you'll learn to avoid people and situations that cause crashes." -- cominatcha

Very good point and a skill I practiced today racing with the cat 4 men crit. Instead of racing to win, I just worked the group, monitoring wind and position, and watched the riders, picking out who was wobbly, irresponsibly aggressive, etc. then worked to maintain a decent position, but away from those riders. Also focused on looking up the pack in order to have some time to take evasive action if necessary. I think my recent asphalt encounters have given me the motivation to make these skills top priority -- Not because I'm scared of hurting, altho I don't much care for it -- but because of the reason pointed out above. If you wreck your bike and put yourself on the ground, you aren't going to win the race, or even place. Better to play it smart AND fast. :D


Farnasty said...

YEAH to not crashing!

cominatcha said...

I'm full of cycling technique so here's another:

Keep your head up. Never focus very long at the distance of your wheel to the wheel in front. A good focus point is the small, of the next person in front, back. There you can see up the road, to the side, and the wheel in front.

You'll learn to "feather" the brake to slow. This keeps your momentum going forward. No need to grab a handfull of brake. Even moving slightly off of the wheel in front causes more resistance to slow you down. Save those brake pads. Plus, when things are moving smoothly your upper body remains relaxed and you save energy.

The more you ride in a group the better you become at developing these skills. On group rides I'm always working on these skills. Even after 23 years of racing I still try not to train to much by myself. Group rides are good for sociallizing but also for developing skills.

kimc said...

Great tips for group riding skills-well put!