Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Ronde Van Brisbeen Ominum Day 1

DAY 1: Ronde Van Brisbeen
Date: 4/1/06
Course: 1.7 mile - total elevation gain per lap - 100' - wide roads with smooth pavement, a challenging 90 degree fast right turn that leads onto the start of the “climb”.
Category: Elite 4
Field: 50+
Teammates: Scott, Josh and Tony- Place: 3rd/ 25mph avg speed

Results: http://www.pilarcitos.com/RondevanBrisbeen/2006results

Ahh… the Ronde. I have not had the best results at this event. 2 years ago it was my first “Cat 4” race and I finished 34th off the back chasing the main field after a crash split the group. Last year I had some pulled muscle issues in my leg and got yanked 3-4 laps into it. This year my form seems to be right on and I was looking forward to some redemption. Despite my poor showings in the past, I really liked the course. Any event Tom puts on, I always have a good time, so we gathered the troops and concocted a plan. Simple in theory, harder to exicute in the event…

It was, stay together at the front, keep the pace high, chase down breaks if possible and keep Scott and myself protected if possible as we seem to both be in good form at the moment.

I was having a good ol’ time talking to Raymond and almost missed my start! I had to roll around to the back of the field. I looked up and could see Josh on the front line and Tony not far behind him. Scott and I were together on the back and we’re off!

The start leads onto the fast down hill section and I could see Josh up ahead stringing it out from the gun. Once we were on the long downhill drag I popped out on the left and motored down into 5th wheel and caught up with Josh once we started the climb.

From there it seemed that the race was going smooth and not too many close calls. Josh was doing a lot of work on the front and keeping the pace high. 2-3 laps into it Scott was pulling through on the front and Tony was floating around the sharp end as well. Things were looking good. We had all the boys were they were supposed to be and I felt actually o.k. Our communication was good and Scott looked like he was hardly working even after doing a bit of work on the front! My first thought was maybe we were going a bit slow on the hill but everytime I looked down it was reading 33+/- kph and that’s not to slow!

Around 5 laps into it, I was feeling like testing my legs and found myself on the front, leading onto the climb, so I set a good tempo and pulled the group up the hill to the top. Peeling off, I was very encouraged from the sensations I was getting from the legs. No pain, my breathing was hard but steady and when I jumped back in around 6th wheel, on the descent, my HR was dropping fast and it seemed my recovery was better than I have ever had!

This gave me the confidence that I would be able to do the hard work necessary to chase down breaks (which I did) and still have enough to give it a go at the finish.

Well there was a lot going on up until the bell lap, but the Fusion boys managed to keep the pressure on at the front with a bit of help from some other team guys.

On the bell lap I was in the top 15 or so and it quickly got strung out on the descent. I was fighting for position leading down to the bottleneck right-hand turn and could not move and lost some positions. I had to sit in and protect what I had (25th~ wheel) I took a drink and a few deep breaths and planned to rail up the hill and try to catch the small group taking off, that contained Scott. Great plan if you can get through the wall of guys huffing and puffing and blocking the whole lane.

I had to wait until the false flat before I could pop through and start moving up. Well… I was running out of room to the finish and I started sprinting, guys were coming back to me right and left. I turned the corner towards the top and saw 1st and Scott in 2nd right in front. I managed to finish right behind Scott in 3rd.

A great day for the Fusion boys…. You all rode great, Big up! Channing was there to cheer and get some great video footage!
More to come…….


Blogger isaiasjob said...


Nice frick'n work! Almost makes me jealous about missing it. However, I was down at Laguna Seca gettin' in a couple laps pre-ride for the SOC this sunday.

The course is tuff. On my second lap, my legs and lungs were feelin' it. Race day will be interesting. There's a lot of climbing...and I like climbing. So, I think I should do OK.

Looking forward to seeing some of the video footage of stage 1 of the Ronde.

i'm out!


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