Sunday, June 28, 2009

Crushing Snails

I raced the Cypress Hill Climb today and it was super fun! We got up there pretty early and hung out in the team tent and waited for the Cat ½ boys (Sebastian, Nieves and Steven) to get ready and take off at 10 am.

Martin and Stu dropped by to help me get psyched up and it was much appreciated to see their smilin’ faces before getting warmed up on my trainer. I spun for about 20 min before heading down to the start line.

I had checked the results from last year’s race and one of the stronger guys who I race with on Tuesday nights, Jay Brooks, had actually placed 2nd; this was cool because he was here today so I was excited to have someone strong to race with.

The lady gave her speech about this was definitely not a road race and it was an individual time trail where it wouldn’t be the first one across the line that won, but rather the best effort. The part I struggled with was that everybody was starting together so I was pretty sure that the first person across the line was definitely going win the race, even if someone else made a bigger effort!

They sent us off and we quickly spun up to about 37 km/h with some jockeying for position going on prior to getting onto the actual climb. We rounded the long corner and then we were into it. I made sure I was in about 5th wheel in order to cover any surges but also keep my nose out of the wind. As we made our way up to the first switchback we gradually changed order so that by the time we were rounding the corner it was Jay leading with me on his wheel and everyone else lined out behind us.

About a hundred meters up the road I slowly came around Jay riding a quick but still comfortable pace and being the classy guy he is, he told me I was doing a good job. We rode this way until the 2nd switchback and as we crested the rise I glanced back over my shoulder and noticed that we had ridden everyone else off our wheels! Awesome!!! I love when that happens...when you unintentionally torch your competition.

As we hit the flat on the switchback I dropped it down a few gears and put in a small acceleration just to keep the pace high and as I took one more glance back to assess the damage we’d done, I noticed I had gapped Jay. Taking advantage of the situation I punched it and by the time I swung around onto the next pitch I had a solid 50m gap. From here I rode my own race frequently checking my gap but as it happened I managed to continually increase it all the way to the line!

Final result: 1st in Men’s Cat.4 in a time of 32 min 50 sec with a gap of 1 min 10 sec on 2nd place. I was pretty psyched because my time would have won the Cat.3 race too by about 35 sec...Sweet!

Next up, Yaletown Grand Prix on Wednesday...let’s have a race fellas!

Pouring it on at the finish line for the solo victory...perfecto!

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