Monday, May 7, 2012

80/20 rule - Cone-Azalia

I don’t venture into the road racing scene too often, but try to make it to at least one per year, especially if they are interesting. Last year was the Criterium Detroit. And this year I decided to do Cone-Azalia. The thing that intrigued me the most about this race is the fact that it is contested on dirt roads and paved, making it not a typical roadie event. It is considered Michigan’s original or longest running dirt road race, which are events I have really grown to love. So since this race has been in my head for some time now, this is the year I would give it a shot.

The race was not much more than a really hard training day for me since it would be the last day of my build 2. I don’t have a road license, so I had to race in Cat 5. Regardless of all this, it was still a race and one I have never done before. So I was extremely excited about it especially not knowing what to expect. From the whistle, I lead out the group. From here I had to decide, was I going to be the dumb ass I normally am and give all these roadies a free ride around the course and pull the peloton for the entire race? Or am I going to be smart and hide like everyone else and pop out at the last minute for the win? As soon as I hit the dirt my decision was made. I ended up pulling for at least 80% of the race. The only other guys will to work was Jim Hilditch and a Trails-edge team racer. The legs felt really good for the entire race, and I was able to neutralize any little attacks. I rode at or above my lactic threshold zones for more of the race. By the time the last lap rolled around, I was still on the front and ratcheting up the pace. We hit the last corner into the wind with 1 K to go. No one would come around. I eased up the pace to try to save some energy know what was about to come. Finally with about 500 meters to go, the pace picked back up, and a few guys from the pack finally made it near the front. At 250 meters, the games started, everyone was squirrely and then the sprints were launched. I felt this was way too early for a sprint to start but had no choice. I dug deep and past the lactic acid in my legs to stay near the front. I passed several guys, and a few came off my wheel and around. I looked up as 5 guys just a wheel to a bike length away crossed the line. I ended up 6th out of 40+ in Cat 5 35+.

I was happy with the result based on all the work I did, and got some great data to analyze. Not sure if I will be doing anymore road events this year, but it is on my mind. But until then, Addison Oaks Stage Race is next on the docket!

Congrats to Jeffery Tom Payne for a solid 5th in a stacked Cat 4 field. You are rocking right now! And congrats to Don Cameron a great 2nd place in Master 45+.

1 comment:

Paynful said...

Nice job John...

Funny, Todd Greene (MCG/Trails Edge guy) said that he pulled for 66.7% of the race...!! ;)

Hopefully you come out for more races!!