Saturday, August 9, 2014

Arma Road Race.

My Wife: "so you had already done this turn 3 times and you still f'd it up?"

Me: "Yes"

Last Saturdays Arma road race was pretty awesome,  it was almost the best ever. If only i hadn't botched the second to last turn, which we had already done three times meaning there is no excuse for me turning like a moron. 

Ahhh what might have been...

It was a roughly 50 mile road race and our cat 4/5 field had about 35 starters. I was feeling good and having fun as soon as they said go.

Tcpckc had another great turnout, all season has been great but the last 6 weeks or so have been off the charts awesome. Riding bikes is fun but riding bikes with your friends is even better. In the 4/5 race alone we had Jeret, Micahel, Mark the Brit, Nate and myself.

The race started off fast but for the most part it was a typical 4/5 road race. Lots of speeding up and slowing down, but im guessing a lot of road races are like that, regardless of category. But i don't mind. Especially if the course is fun, which this one was. We did 4 laps, multiple turns per lap, two railroad crossings, one long stretch of crappy road (but crappy in a fun way), one longish hill, not too steep but enough to make a difference in crunch time, especially since it topped out about 1 mile from the finish, then the two tight corners ont narrow roads within about 600 meters to go. Plus the scenery was pretty.

It was a fun course. 

the mood in the field was good, people were chatty, i was telling jokes...

The other day my dad walked up to me and said, 'son, if you don't stop masturbating you're going to go blind. I said, Dad, i'm over here.'

Kyle from KCBC spent a lap or so off the front but we could see him the whole time. We caught him with maybe 10 miles to go and Michael mentioned we needed to be towards the front. Soon after, his back wheel lost a spoke. I was riding behind him and was going to offer the use of my spare in the following truck but after a few seconds he decided it would be fine, which it was. Mark was also sitting towards the front and despite not seeing Jeret i figured he would be there when it mattered. He's rides casual. Nate was also kicking butt especially since its his first season.

We caught Kyle and i moved up to top 5, thinking someone might make a move that i wanted to follow. Never really happened. There was a small move when we hit the crappy road section, two dudes on the same team went off the front, i pulled for a bit, then there was an attack and the group was shortly all together again. As we hit the hill for the last time i was sitting around 10th and had plenty of energy. This was it.

I set myself up on the far right side and had no issues being boxed in when the accelerations came. The last few minutes of this race, starting with the climb, were so fun. I was eyeing everyone, trying to get in the perfect spot. Towards the top the gaps were starting to open but i was right where i wanted to be and well within myself, i might have attacked but i saw Mark doing just that so i grabbed a wheel. I think Kevin from Boulevard had already attacked and i knew he had a chance to hold it and that it was a good move to go with but Mark was chasing him and he had a small gap. He had a rider on his wheel followed by a tiny gap and then two riders that i was directly behind. The wheels i was following eventually caught Mark and we lined up for the first of the two turns.

Things are a little hazy but i was probably 5th wheel here with about 500 meters to go (full disclosure, my estimation of distance in Meters is horrible). This is when it all went pear shaped. The guys in front of me took a horrible line, I thought, so i vow to show them how it's done. i come in fast on the outside, thinking ill carry way more momentum... all the way to victory.

Except im an idiot and I come in too hot and had to go into the grass... NUTS! i never put a foot down and was back on the pavement in two seconds but that was all it took. Any shot at winning was over. I went from having a real shot to having no shot. I still gave it everything, at first, as soon as i was back on the pavement i was pissed and i punched it. Got in front of a guy or two before the final turn (again, the line they took was less than astounding, but i obviously dontknow  what im talking about) and got out of the saddle for the final sprint... i pretty much blew up halfway there and coasted in for 12th.


I never saw Michael in the finish but he was in there and had a shot at 3rd but blew up for 9th. And he started the final climb in the very back! Dudes on fire. Jeret said he was right behind me when i went into the grass and he took 6th. Nathan was 19th and Mark was 21st. I think Mark blew up going for broke at the top of the climb. 

The whole day was awesome except for the last minute. Again, i really thought the course was sweet. The finish was perfect. Having a climb that's just hard enough to create small gaps, then throw in 500 meters of flat before two 90 degree turns onto narrow roads with the finish line just after that.... its like something at the end of a spring classic. At least that's how it felt to me.

I want a do-over.

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