Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Don't believe the hype!!! The Vt50 recap.
All year long I've been hearing how this was the easiest of all the endurance races to win. My confidence was high coming into this race. Despite the fact that I've only ridden gears in three races leading up to this, I felt like the distance and lack of any "real pros" showing up in the past could lead to a win for me. Boy I was wrong. Andrew Freye is here, Adam Snyder is here, Jason Sager is here as well as a full cast of familiar faces from the pro class at the Root66 series, all licking their lips seeing me on gears for the first time. I almost expected Jeff Shalk himself to pull to the line at 6AM to jam his pump in my spokes (breaking away style), but he didn't, Thank god.
Start was in the dark at XC race pace, No scratch that. The start actually felt like a Cat5 crit, until the first climb where Jason Sager (Jamis bikes) took the lead followed by yours truly. Going out this hard in a endurance race is normally suicide and this was no exception. After about 45 minutes I was unwilling to hold Jason's wheel for any longer and was quickly gobbled up by the chase group where I came to the realization that I'm the only 170 pounder in the bunch. Hell I might be the only one over a buck fifty. After a long climb and a rubbled decent I was dropped from the chase group. Dropped on the downhill? Effing full suspensions and effing New Jersey. With the lack of any sustained downhills at home how do I develop this skill? I would eventually find my groove after a few miles alone and thanks to the ginger ale refill at one of the many aid stations would begin the laborious task of pulling cracked riders back. Working my way past Adam Snyder with 5 miles to go gave me a boost and I cruised to the finish. 5th overall and second in my age only to Sager. Not bad considering my tactical errors at the start and a victory for my continued development on the gears. I started hard, cracked, came back, cracked again and still finished, all the while not making too much of a ass out of myself. A victory!
I only have one more endurance race on my calender and after that I'm gonna take a year to work on speed. So don't look for me at anything over 2 hours next year and don't look for me on the single....