Friday, October 15, 2010

Helmet Cam - August 31, 2010 @TuesdayTheRent

After my upgrade request got filled a lot quicker than expected, I had a little conundrum. I had a race the next day. It was the monkey on my back race, one that always gave me fits. I got shelled week after week after week, unable to maintain the pace, unable to handle the smaller fields with the correspondingly less shelter offered.

But, as a newly minted 2, I felt pressure to do better than that. I needed to be good enough.

This drove me beyond what I could imagine.

Here's the story in an almost-15 minute, new YouTube time limit helmet cam clip.



Unknown said...

Great race, great video.
good on ya.

Anonymous said...

Wow - lots of tension in this video! Congrats on your Cat 2 upgrade by the way...

Loren said...

Great job1 You did "well".

Anonymous said...

Serious question..In the video you mention that slow and steady is better, then later you say to chase down break basically as fast as you can to get it over with. I think the bottom line is a steady slower pace is better if you are closing the gap, but if they are getting away, get it over with quickly. Thoughts? Great Video.

Aki said...

thanks everyone :)

On the question of bridging - a lot of times riders will get into a group and 'work together' to try and get back on. But the pace rarely gets above "slightly uncomfortable" and the group rarely catches on. I know this from experience :)

So... the trick is to actually go faster than the group you're catching. The guy Tim will average 28-29 mph solo in crit breaks, and on form he can hold 31 mph for a mile at a time, holding 27-28 mph between the "fast parts". To bridge to him, if he has a decent lead, requires an immense effort. I watched accomplished domestic pros (teammates Jeff Rutter and Graeme Miller) fail to bridge to him while he was off the front solo (Tim won the race, solo).

In the video the first guy attacks sharply. It looks impressive, it is impressive, but he turns off the power. I don't think he blew up, he just didn't want to continue on for some reason (tactical). One thing - he was wearing a CVC jersey, shorts notwithstanding, so when he saw the CVC coming up the side like a rocket...

So the CVC guy (I think it's Chris - used to race for a yellow kit team) gets a gap, Kevin Y ("unhurried style") goes after him. "Style" doesn't mean "speed". Kevin turns huge gears slowly - he runs at least a 54T, and trust me, he goes fast. He's annihilated me in sprints before, destroyed me.

Kevin has very good power over a minute to three minutes. He can pull for 2 laps at Rentschler Field, at speed, and be back in action a lap or three later. He knew he could go so he did.

When I go, I have maybe a lap there, so I have to finish bridging by then.

No matter what, when you bridge it's a violent, hard effort. Pros hold 31 mph (50 kph) for a long, long time when chasing down those "no hope" breaks in the Tour. It takes an enormous amount of energy to take back a minute every 10 km, which is a minute every 6 miles. We don't see that - we just see "oh, it's 30km to go, 3 min, no way the break will make it..."

So the message here is that bridging gaps requires huge efforts. It should be highly uncomfortable. It should require immense amounts of speed. And if you think you're going fast enough, you probably aren't.