Wednesday, March 26, 2008

More Warmups = Blowups at ye olde track


Well, the Boy and I headed out the Hellyerdrome again last night for some suffervals with the Nolanator. Next week, we get to full-on racing. This was the last week of mock racing.

Again, lots of chicas showed up. That was great! Also, the Jacques-Mayne brothers rolled out for the event along with a good showing from Team Specialized and Morgan Stanley/Spine. So, this time there were 3 groups. The fast group last night gave a whole new definition of fast. There was an intermediate group and a slow group. I definitely felt like the slow group was more competitive for me this week.

However, the warm up last night should be called a Blowup. Holey Moley. I only lasted 3 laps this time. What the heck? Last week, we had a moto to pace us from 18-30 and I lasted 20 of 30 laps. This week, it was self-regulated. So, I spent most of the warmup near the rails and dropped in to the back of the line each time they came around. I would hold on as long as I could and then drift up to the rail again. That was usually about 3/4 of a lap. When we got home and looked at Rick's GPS of the lap splits, it explained my crappiness. We started at 21, which lasted for a grand total of 2 laps. Then, it went straight to 26 the next lap and then got faster from there. When Rick popped around lap 25, they were going 31! Hello people! I don't even have a 31 right now! Let alone a 35 or whatever the heck they were doing for the last couple laps. Anyway, the dropping down in was good practice, so it wasn't a total loss.

We did "sprints" which were mock 9 lap points races with sprint every 3. I had some good success in this event taking longer sprints and getting a gap while others were still poking around around and recovering.

We did Australian pursuit. I pretty much suck at this. Mostly, because it is hard to get well-matched fitness on a single team, let alone 2 teams. Now, if we did this with 2 W4 teams going after each other, it would probably be pretty fun.

We did a 12 lap scratch race last. I totally suck at getting position off the rail and hence started and finished this race off the back. I was able to catch on a couple of times, but never was able to get a position I would have liked.

Oh, and the rental bike left me with a nasty kink in my neck and some missing skin in unmentionable areas. So, I may be rethinking my bike strategy. That is something for another post, though.

14 comments:

Chris said...

Track racing sounds like a blast. If you are talking 35 mph that would be tough to hold. I bet there is a lot of strategy in track racing like crits. Good luck with the bike thing.

CyclistRick said...

You did fine. We are learning the whole track thing, and getting a bike that fits will be key. Like I said before, for now you can use the Fuji if you want and I will fight the rental.

And what do you mean I lasted 25 or so. I lasted 35 or so. I came off at the end just because there was an unsafe condition at the back of the group so I swung up and off the train and then just took it to the finish. And the pace did not pick up at the end. It was 29-31 from lap 24 (fastest lap) through 30, then actually went down to 28-30 for the last 6.

chatterbox said...

ahhh. I must have seen one of your SJBC compadres pulled off and thought it was you!

Larry pulled us the last few laps, so I was watching from the cool down circle. That must be why it seemed faster toward the end. But, they did definitely sprint the last half lap.

Groover said...

I have been invited over to the Velodrome by friends but just the idea of riding a bike with no brakes and no free wheeling kinda freaks me ... got to give it a go sometime.

Any tips on how to overcome this and get started?

twinkiepatissier said...

i hope you will do a road race, crit, xc, or cx report soon... this whole track talk without footnotes and index hurts my head.

CyclistRick said...

twinkie - the track stuff is prep for her next set of races - the Madera Stage Race! Then there will be race reports.

Groover - I will let my lovely wife give her answer, but one key for her was using the beginner training sessions at our local velodrome. They require attendance at 3 such sessions before doing any advanced training or races, and the skills taught are invaluable. Lack of freewheeling one becomes used to quickly. And one learns to use the banking on the track to help adjust speed, one of the aspects one associates with braking. If the line is slowing you lose speed by turning slightly "up track"; the uphill grade slows you down. In the big paceline Ms Chatterbox had trouble staying with at 30MPH, the tail end of the line would swing 2-3 meters higher on the track in turn 3, coming off the fastest part of the track, each lap as everyone swung a bit up track to slow down a bit. It takes some time to get used to it, but once you do then you find it becomes as automatic as feathering the brakes in a crit.

Beth said...

what about the hack?!?! if you haven't hacked yet, you haven't really experience the joy of track!

chatterbox said...

groover - yeah, beginner sessions are key - lots of time to circle slowly and get used to the bike.

twinkie - it's all track until Madera. Then, I will be posting about some other stuff...

beth - yes, I get the track hack, crit cough, etc. I even get it from road races. The key seems to be whether or not I get a proper cool down. If I go hard and then pull off the track without using the smaller circle, I will be coughing up a lung!

velogirl said...

the rental bike also has gearing that won't help you go fast.

Jackie said...

Darn. I would really like to watch this masochistic sport some time and one of these days I will get down there. Really, it has to be more fun to watch than to do, no contest! (Sort of like Roller Derby?)

velogirl said...

hey, what are you looking at in that photo?

chatterbox said...

jackie - yeah, come down n' watch. It makes for some good photos, too!

vg - do you mean the gear is too easy or too hard on the rentals. I've had both situations come up....I think I was looking under my armpit for the pack as I had just attacked (photo was from one of the fall sessions).

Groover said...

Thanks heaps for advise and encouragement chatterbox and cyclistrick. I'll check out a beginner class (once the track season starts again) and will let you know how I go. :-)

chatterbox said...

groover - I guess the season is getting pretty much to the dregs for you in the southern hemisphere. Spring will be a good time to get out and try the track as you are getting in shape for next season!