Archive | March, 2014

Philly Phyler RR & South Jersey Spring Series #3

17 Mar

Saturday: Philly Phyler cat 3/4 RR

NOTE: Im bummed that my SD card was full pretty much all weekend and like a dum-dum I didn’t notice. I don’t have any sweet GoPro footy from the weekend. #wompwomp

STRAVA: http://www.strava.com/activities/121474808

Avg Speed: 23.4mph
Avg Power: 257W
Max Power: 1067W
Avg HR: 180bmp
Max HR: 202bmp

A bunch of us met up to ride over to the start of the 3/4 Philly Phyler road race. This was my first go at the race and my first RR in ages. I was a bit weary as the pre-reg list looked pretty deep with talent. I think we barely made it past the natural roll out when either Willem or Jack from Bicycle Therapy attacked on West River. This seemed to be the theme of the day. I was feeling pretty good heading up the climb from West River past Strawberry Mansion bridge and was getting into my groove.

On the third lap the pace slowed a bit and myself and a couple went off the front. This only last a very short amount of time but it felt good to give it a go. Going up the climb for the third time I was cross-chaining like a champ trying to keep the legs spinning rather than mashing. Right as we turned right up Greenland Dr I was sitting in the middle at In the top 15 or so when SHHHHHHHH…skiddd…… fuuuuuuuu!!!!!!! When I was out of the saddle stomping the pedals my $150 wheelset had way more flex than I was expecting and tweaked enough to suck in my rear derailleur… this caused my hanger to shear off and bend my chain around causing my rear to skid to a stop immediately. I then was in the center of the pack hoping I didn’t get rear ended with 50+ dudes still needed to get past.

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All I was thinking was stay thin!!!! Paper-THIN! It worked and I didn’t get smashed. Luckily for me Thom Cal was right there and we chatted a bit and I pulled some links out of the chain and took the RD off to kick/push my way back to the start/finish. I was a bit bummed but what can you do. On my way kick/pushing on the West River Dr path I hear a ‘Yo Dream/Greenberg?!’ and I loop back around to find the #messlife dudes doing their thing drinking brews and watching bike racing. I hung with them for a bit watching the rest of the race pounding a couple beers. Food for thought, you will feel loopy after not eating for a couple hours, racing hard, and pounding beers before food.

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I eventually make it back to the start and felt a bit more bummed about the situation. I caught a ride home and during the trip I had the lady sign me up for the South Jersey Spring Series the following day.

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After eating and hanging out for a bit it was time to replace the RD, hanger, chain, and cable. I like to have things ready so luckily I already had all of these pieces in the tool box ready to go.

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Sunday: South Jersey Spring Series #3 cat 4/5 & 3/4

Cat 4/5

Avg Speed: 23.4mph
Avg Power: 283W
Max Power: 1125W
Avg HR: 190bmp
Max HR: 202bmp

Strava: http://www.strava.com/activities/121474801

I wasn’t planning on racing on Sunday… but sometime you need to make moves. I toyed with the idea of doing the Temple Crit but knew the strong field would be tough to get through so I opted for the easier S. Jersey jawn. We got out to the race around 9:20am and got things together. It was cool 32F with a wicked wind.

The race started fast… or I clipped in and made it that way. A few breaks went early and I didn’t a lot of work reeling a couple of them in. I think that was when the field blew apart a bit. I realized the legs didn’t like all the work at the front but honestly no one else was doing any work and it’s a training crit. With about 5 or 6 to go a few faster guys went and I jumped with them. We made it ~2 laps before we were caught and the legs felt it. With 2.5 or so to go Andrew went and I wanted to go… I really did but I didn’t have it. I was sitting on the front and kept the pace the same but didn’t chase. I knew he could take it if I gave him some time. As we rounded the line with 2 to go a couple people went and I jumped on. We kept the pace high for the last two laps. I was feeling alright but not exactly good… we were closing down the gap on Andrew but I was hopefully hed keep it going. As we came out of corner 4 I was sitting right behind Nick (2nd wheel) and got outsprinted at the line and ended up 4th/51 with Nick in 2nd and Andrew in 1st…

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Cat 4/5 Results

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Cat 3/4 Race

Avg Speed: 24.1mph
Avg Power: 255W
Max Power: 996W
Avg HR: 187bmp
Max HR: 205bmp

Strava: http://www.strava.com/activities/121474805

I wasn’t feeling it so much but we jumped back out there for the cat3/4 race. As usually Byron went from the gun and the pace picked up but after he got caught things ramped down. The first 15 minutes weren’t bad. A few minutes later I see Justin go and I jump on with another guy or so. We keep the pressure on and the 8 of us slowly start opening up the gap on the field. At first we couldn’t organize so well but eventually everyone start taking pulls and it feels like we are actually in a REAL bike race. Ooooohhhhieie! We all put some serious work in with Nick Cal taking charge and giving some orders. I we then see small packs in front and the carrot in dangled in our face… we scoop a group here, then another there and before we knew it we had lapped the field with most people getting pulled.

Unfortunately for us those last couple riders latched onto our group of 8 (even though they were a lap down) and made things more chaotic than it needed to be. At this point the group of us slowed a bit but kept rotating through. When the lap cards came out people started thinking more stetigec and trying to get some recovery in. With about 2 or 3 to go there were a couple attacks that went off the front with no one wanting to do too too much work. Justin went hard and I didn’t want to see him get away so we put in some work but I think he blew himself up in the wind. Coming into the last lap another guy went off the front and I was sitting 2nd wheel. We came out of the chicane and he had a gap but was looking like he was fading. I was encouraging the guy in front a bit and sat on his wheel going into turn three. As we came out of turn three and up the slight incline I jumped hard, out of the saddle and going for broke. I came into turn 4 hot with no one in front. I gave a glance back and sprinted to the line. On my left I saw the wheel of Paul from Kelly Benefits. I then saw his wheel go slightly past mine, I dug. Dug really hard and could tell I was getting it back! I was all in but the line came up quick and I was inches from victory. I felt great about the performance and would have loved a victory but that will have to wait. I ended up 2nd/34 and was SO siked to get into a winning break/ It has been a goal of mine since I started ‘racing’ on the road.

Cat 3/4 sprint

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We checked the results as the lapped riders had also sprinted making things tougher.

Cat 3/4 Results

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I was excited as it was and to get paid on top?! Cant complain about that.

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Once back in the city it was margaritaaaa time (editor’s note: I drank a Tecate instead)

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And a shot of tequila with candles for Brendan’s 30th

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I then proceeded to cry and sweat all over the place eating some Thai food

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Then headed over to the surprise party to hang with a choice crew… It was another solid weekend.

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2014 South Jersey Spring Series – Race 2 (Cat 4/5 & 3/4)

10 Mar

After racing for the first time in 2014 last weekend I felt confident in the legs. Now that I knew I could hang in both races the goal was to make the legs do some work. The day before the race a couple of us went out for a 4-hour road ride to take in the 58*F sunny weather that was predicted. Valley Forge was hopping with the nice weather. Its always fun to cruise through the battlefields.

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And somehow like last weekend we ended up drinking way too much at a beer event at Standard Tap. Cant go wrong with some big barrel aged smokey beers…

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Cat 4/5 Mens Race video:

Cat 4/5 Strava Jawn (my power meter was acting up… low battery I believe)

Cat 3/4 Strava Jawn

Sunday rolls up a little sooner than expected but I pack the car and get ready for the cat 4/5 & 3/4 race. Only difference from last weekend is it was wet and pretty windy. Game plan was to tax the legs, stay up front & out of trouble, and DON’T miss the break if it happens again. Nothing wild to report, not many crazy crashed (I think just 1), did some work, sat in, did some work, sat in… the norm. With about 6 or 7 to go things picked up and everybody got ready. A couple thing went and came back and going into the last lap a person goes off the front. There are 2 or 3 people in front of me and Im hoping they’ll do the work. Unfortunately I get boxed in on the chicane as we slow… the guy gets farther away. Coming out of the chicane I know I need to bridge the gap as 2 people fall off. Now there are 3 people in front. I get close but cant quite tack on before turn 3 and realize the front 2 are pulling away with very little real estate left. I make a charge out of the saddle up the slight incline coming into the last corner but the legs don’t have it. I sprint to the line just to keep my position and roll in 3rd/55+. I felt good mentally but the legs were very tired, in a good way.

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I messed up eating as I didn’t know there was a new race between the 4/5 & 3/4 and had to pound some extra food right before the race. Usually a bad idea for me but it worked out. The legs felt heavy and I was hoping to hang the whole race, as I knew I wasn’t contesting anything. It went well though, did some pulling, reeled in a couple of attacks, and hung the entire time. Didn’t contest the sprint but wasn’t planning on it. Rolled in ~17/30+ I was excited to race with tired legs and still be able to hang, because this is a training series… and cross is just around the corner 😉

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I was hoping to help Jack but the legs weren’t agreeing with that plan. Anyways he doesn’t need my help, that’s for sure

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Afterwards we ran some errands and swung by a new veg place, Green Medley in the Moorsetown Mall (weird I know)

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2014 South Jersey Spring Series – Race 1 (Cat 4/5)

3 Mar

Cat (4/5) Race + Video + A couple photos.
Ill Post the 3/4 race tomorrow.

Video:

Strava Jawns:

cat 4/5: http://www.strava.com/activities/117361480
31:15min = 12.4miles
Avg Power: 266W
Max Power: 1,147W
Avg Speed 23.8mph

cat 3/4: http://www.strava.com/activities/117361476
46:23minutes = 18.5miles
Avg Power: 256W
Max Power: 1,065W
Avg Speed 23.9mph

Sunday was the first race of the road season down in South Jersey at Team Independence Cycling’s Spring Series Event. They are putting on 4 weekends of racing so if you havnt already jump in the mix to support a good team and solid dudes (https://www.bikereg.com/Net/sjss2014). Coming into the race I was feeling good and the 10am start time for the Men’s Cat 4/5 meant I didnt have to worry about going to be early. Luckily for me Jeff Appletans got me pretty drunk earlier that day at a legit beer tasting at Iron Hill (NJ) for some dialed wild ales and burbon barrel aged jawns so getting rest was easy.

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Anyways I woke up around 8 and got things together. The venue was about 30minutes from Philly and easy to get to. I picked up my sweet Sommerville CLOTH number that was used for both the cat4/5 and 3/4 race. Sweet!

Mens Cat 4/5 Race

After a solid warm-up we lined up and the race started hard from the start. OK, game time. The course was pretty fun with a chicane and easy 90degree turns. After watching the field go though the chicane a couple times I realized being near the back was not an option if I wanted to stay upright.

There were some issues with lapped riders but thats the nature of a 4/5. There are people with such a range of abilities in that race that it can make it tough. After a pull at the front I tucked in to save the legs as I planned on doubling up for my 1st 3/4 race and had no idea what to expect.

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Of course that lap through the chicane two riders touched shoulders, then wheels, and I thought I was going to take it… I saw the wobble and thought, Oh Shit!/ Luckily they kept it upright but one rider looked to have dropped a chain or broken something and pulled off.

About 2 seconds later a rider who had just taken a weirdo line took another odd line through the chicane and over steered out of the corner causing him to turn-bar into the pavement and eat it. The next thing I know is a bike is bouncing at my head and Im doing 20+mph… I grab the brakes and move to the right but the bike keeps bouncing farther than I was expecting so I swerve left to avoid running it over. Im now barely moving and need to put in an effort to tack back on.

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It was uneventful for the next few until 5 laps to go. I quickly made my way up front to make sure I was in good position as the legs felt solid. On the back side with 3 laps to go I was sitting 2nd wheel and the pace slowed. I then see Mr. Nick Cal make a hard attack and I follow. I should have grabbed his wheel but I didnt think he’d had the gusto for 3 laps. What I didnt realized that there were slews of lapped traffic ahead of our group.

Nick was able to get past a slew of riders that were strewn across the course. I had to take a poor line through the chicane that round but kept him in sight. Then I realized there was a lapped group of maybe 15 guys that he was then able to jump through and get some more shelter. Shiiiiiiit! I knew he had a solid chance of staying away now but I didnt want to cook myself like I always end up doing at the end of a race pulling the field around… what to do?!

Coming into the chicane a rider came around and I glad fully sat in. Unfortunately on the backside I could tell he was coming un-raveled and had to get around. I tacked onto 2 other riders coming into the 2nd to last turn. I kept a tight line and was able to move past the breakaway rider and now was sitting 2nd wheel on the CS Velo guy going up the slight incline.

I tend to go too early so instead of going around I sat on with hopes to actually out sprint someone. Coming into the last corner I had to slow a but behind the CS Velo rider a bit and by the time I got out of the saddle the CS Velo guy already gapped me and he was wheel-to-wheel with Nick going into the line. Nick was able to keep the win by inches and I came in 3rd out of 49 starters. I felt good about the day and got ready for the Cat 3/4 race in an hour and a half. Ill post that race recap tomorrow.

Congrats Nick on the win!

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Results:

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