Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Last race of the year. PA State Championships and thoughts on my season.

 I did the PA State championships @ Jordan Creek parkway in Allentown, PA. Not exceptionally cold but very windy. I had ridden 1 time the week leading up to this so I wasn't expecting much. Got there, stayed warm and rode my trainer to warm up. Legs didn't feel too bad. Did a lap around the course, which was similar to last year but even better, atmo. This course is on the side of a hill essentially, with a flat section at the top and at the bottom. A really fun technical descent which my Fangos were handling nicely. If there's 1 thing I do fairly well, is descend, and wha-whoo!, barriers that you could come flying into. 46 of us started the combined Masters race. I did OK in the short prologue and then started drifting back a bit. I could see 3 guys ahead of me and with each lap I'd get just a bit closer. 1 of them was too far ahead (Mike Laub) for me to catch but I knew I could get the other 2. The leader came around me right at the finish line for the start of his last lap, so our race was shortened by 1 lap. On the climb up to the finish I got on the wheels of the 2 in front of me and waited. I made a bad turn on the 180% turn before the finish and thought I might not get it done. I passed the 1st guy easily and thought I just missed the second guy (Jay Downs). Turns out I did catch him. 30th out of 46 total, 13th out of 18 in my age group. Legs felt surprisingly good and was pretty happy with my race. It was one of my favorite courses this year. A shout out to Dan K for his weiner hand ups (which I politely refused) and his awesome pecan pie and coffee at the end (which I eagerly accepted). A pretty good end to my season.
    As for my season; I was A LOT leaner this year; 176 as I type this now and I was even down to as low as 174. I haven't been this lean since, well, I don't know when. It definitely makes a difference in your performance. I had fewer turns of bad luck (being in the wrong place at the wrong time) and mechanicals, although a dropped chain and rolled tubie cost me a bunch of places. The tubie cost me likely my best finish of the year at Fair Hill.  I only raced 8 races as opposed to 15 the previous year, but with my oldest daughter being in college now and not having as much $$ to blow on these things, you gotta cut back. I enjoyed the PA series races that I did and I FINALLY got to do Granogue. I'm making sure that's on my calender every year. Missed a lot of the MABRA races but did mostly PA series and MAC, which I really enjoyed. I'm already looking forward to next year. But for now, I'm taking it easy for a week or so, then I'll get the fixie out and think about starting weight training. But I may not do as much weights this year and instead do core excercises like pilates. I really don't need additional "mass".
   It was a weird season of sorts; some of my rivals/friends (Dave Tambeaux and Thor) either didn't race (Thor) or weren't doing as many (Dave) like myself, making things just different. Even though fields have grown significantly. Here's to a good off-season and some skiing perhaps then some road races. Just to get ready for next year.
As an addition; my cross results dot com points are now at 511. I may be on the verge of not sucking :-)


cxstraggler said...

Way to finish up strong there teammate. Did u like Allentown better than Taneytown? Good job, take a little break and get at it again! Hup Hup!

NVdK said...

Way better. Taneytown is a very unimaginative, somewhat boring course IMHO. But I tend to do well there as it's not very technical and pretty flat. Allentown is a much better course.

NVdK said...

Oh. And thanks!