Sunday, January 6, 2008

Yeah, it’s totally worth it

2007 was a very good year and yet it was a difficult year. We rolled into 2007 with a 37 man roster, including 10 young men that composed our first ever junior team. For a team in its 20th season of racing the new focus helped to pump new life into a tired “old man’s team”. For the juniors there were highs (Charlie Avis’ win in Belgium comes to mind) and there were lows (sickness and health), but mostly it was a great year with lots of wins and learning opportunities. For the masters, we savored a good number of victories and had fun with some of the best masters racers in the US.

We also had that Tour de France debacle and the end of the Discovery Channel Pro team, but I won’t get into that.

Personally, I have fond memories of some slick team wins (thanks guys), a super competitive Nor Cal Crit Championship win, and two nasty crashes.

Fast forward to 2008 and my first race of the new season. Earlier today I was out at a local criterium training series helping to lead brand new racers through a curriculum that helps them get more comfortable going through corners shoulder to shoulder with other riders at 30 miles per hour. In addition to the mentoring, which is something to be proud of in itself, I get a good amount of miles during the day. 8am to 3:30pm on and around my bike. Talking up cycling with friends and teammates is one great way to spend the day. Today was totally different so I thought I’d write about it. The 1/2/3’s started out with a small group of maybe 30 riders. With 50 degree weather and a threat of rain it was no wonder of the small turnout. The pace seemed moderate for the first 20 minutes and I got to wonder when the decisive move might come. 15 year old teammate Daniel Tisdell and his 1 percent body fat was already out of the race when Joel Robertson (Trumer Pils- 2007, ???- 2008) rolled away in the cross wind so I quickly bridged to him. A corner later he wanted me to pull through but I was already spent. He punched it again (smart move) and opened up the gap while I scrambled for a draft. A corner later and teammate Billy Innes shot up the opposite side of the field and bridged to Joel. Nice move Billy. The two of them rolled away. The field gave chase with the wind quickly splintering our groups. I was going backwards fast and could not get my heart rate down. This was not good. My speed is coming down, my heart rate is going up and here I am dropping an anchor like a dutiful sailor. I slug it out for the next twenty minutes and limp to the finish.

Billy took Joel in the sprint. Win #2 on the year (Daniel won the San Bruno hillclimb on Tuesday)

What happened?
Sick? no
Eat enough? yep
Drink enough? yep
Training above AT last 4 months? not much at all, but I thought I could suffer well
Too many miles today? Nope, I blew out a tire and missed a race
Broke my Trek carbon frame at the seat stay? Yep… that was it. My wheel had been rubbing for the past 20 minutes and I didn’t hear it because it was so cold out I had my ears covered.

Thanks for reading…. 2008 is going to be great fun! Lar


TreBone said...

Wow!! How long do you think you were riding with the wheel rub? After you fixed your flat?

teamnolan said...

I took a closer look at the seat stay and drop out when I came home and it was just like a 6 year olds wiggly tooth. So, I'm thinking that it came loose in the 5's race, I flatted, then it flopped over to the chain stay when Joel made his big move. My HRM file shows mirrors exactly what happened (first 5 laps avg of 3:20 and 150 HR avg; next 5 laps 3:30 and 181 HR avg; last 4 laps at 3:40 and 155 HR avg.