View Full Version : Mason Lake #2 & Sequim #1

03-11-2007, 07:21 PM
Wow - what a great opening weekend of racing (for me at least)

Mason Lake #2 (2 laps, 12 mile course)
I skipped Mason 1 this year as in past years it has been quite the zoo, but turns out that it was a tiny field and the weather was nice..... oh well. Mason 2 started out as a "convince me I ought to ride" day for me. We got there and it was drizzling, I had no team mates around and the race that was on my calendar was actually the Sunday Sequim race so I admit I hemmed and hawed for quite a while, but in the end I can't stand to sit and watch so down I went and registered. Eventually 2 of my team mates did come, but we were rather out numbered by several other teams. Since the last week the race had been rather tame at least one team decided that this week it should be different. Attacks started from the very beginning keeping the pace high, but no one managed to get away. Since there were really only two of us that stood a chance of staying away me and my team mate were lying pretty low in the pack. We were covering breaks, but not initiating too much on our own. On the back side of the course one of the gals after standing to climb, sat back down and pushed her bike back right into the wheel of a team mate. They went down like a line of dominos - though luckily it was a slow crash and no one was really hurt. I was able to get a foot out and wind my way through a few of the fallen on the shoulder and sprint up to the lucky few who managed to be in front of the group. That pared it down to just around 10 or 12 of us. The poor gal who caused the crash had managed to take down her entire team so she was the only one of them left out front.. After that the pressure was on and the tempo was kept high enough that we didn't see too much more attacking. We came around the second lap safely though it was raining much harder by this time. I wear prescription glasses and this means when it rains I can't see too much, but I can't take them off either.... My main concentration at this point was just staying safe and making sure I didn't touch wheels with anyone. When we came to the 200meter sign I was at the back and I had a few thoughts about whether or not to sprint, but I was on the left and when the road opened (we were allowed the whole road from the 200 meters) I had a beautiful clear route through so I figured what the heck. To my utter amazement it was like everyone else was moving slowly backwards... I came around and finished second only to my team mate. Sweet. Not too bad for a day I swore I wouldn't race.

Sequim #1 (3 laps, 12 mile course)
We had really henious weather predicted up here for Sunday, but Sequim is in the famous rain shadow of the Olympics and it did not fail us today. It had been raining the night before, but by morning the weather was great! We had a few more ladies out today for the team, including a few of our new people for their first race. Like the day before the race started out fast and furious with many attacks. I had just gone off the front (can't remember if I was covering an attack or making one) when someone passed it up that there had been a crash and two of my team mates were down. The group came together and it slowed up for a while while everyone sorted out their heads again - it is a bit rattling when a crash happens so soon into a race - we'd barely been out 10 or 15 minutes or so at the time. When we came around to the back side of the course it was very windy. A few people tried to make moves, but no one got very far and for the most part everyone just wanted to avoid being caught out in the wind. I made a few attempts to get away on the hills, but they were pretty small ones (the hills that is) so even though I could get a gap going up I'd just get caught again going down, plus I'm pretty hopeless fighting a head wind like that by myself. For the second and third laps I decided that I wasn't going to be getting away today and that I would put all my effort into helping my team mate go. She plans to make all three races in the series and she's good on the flats and into the wind. The best I could do was cover breaks and try to put pressure on the front to wear people down chasing me as much as possible. It was great fun really - last year I rarely got to practice these kinds of tactics as I often found myself without team mates around me. It was pretty wearing trying to cover all the breaks, but after my one team mate got away there were still two of us in the pack. We got to play the games of not helping the chase, and it was amazing how well it worked. I'm not sure all 4's really understand what it means to not chase your team mate... They really did try to orgainize, but didn't seem to be getting it if we were slowing things down and didn't or couldn't shake us. At some point they really did just give up. You could feel it when they stopped trying. When it came down to the field finishing I was right up second from front this time at 1000 meters, but it didn't work out too great. I was in the middle and had the wheel of someone I know to be a very powerful sprinter, but then she moved over left and I was popped right out into the wind. Knowing I have difficulty working up a good sprint from the front I attempted to fall back a bit and regain someones wheel, but with everyone jockying for postition I slipped back much further than I wanted to. In the end I was pretty well boxed in, but after all the work I had done during the race I don't think it mattered much. My legs were feeling pretty finished by this time. I finished 13th over all and was well pleased with having done a good race, having done more tactical manoevers than ever before and for staying out of trouble. After the race we went to make sure everyone was OK with the people who'd crashed - we'd seen them back at the start when we went by to the second and third laps, so we were pretty sure they had no major injuries. The were pretty banged up, but no broken bones or severe injuries (the road surface was awful chip seal and was like a cheese grater if you fell). Unfortunately a rider from another team went down as well and she wasn't as lucky. In addition to some nasty road rash she got a broken clavical and possible concussion.

03-11-2007, 07:52 PM
Wow, Eden! Thanks for the report! I'd love to come watch a race sometime. Maybe we could make a TE gathering out of it, and cheer like wild women for you!

03-11-2007, 09:35 PM
Great report, Eden! Cheers to a great start to the '07 season! Hope you have a great year. :)

03-11-2007, 09:58 PM
Wow Eden thanks for the report... You're doing great out there!!!

Thanks also for reminding me why I'm not doing road races... brrr! scary. I'm glad you're out there doing it though!

03-12-2007, 12:40 AM
Great report, Eden. I agree with Knott---would love to come see you race sometime. Let us know if there's any particular race you'd like us to show up for...

03-12-2007, 06:01 AM
Yes, the only races I've seen are the ones at Seward park, and they are usually 100 men and 1 woman. Do give us some advanced warning!


03-19-2007, 08:24 AM
hmmmm - most of my races aren't all that close into town (alas I usually skip the two crits that are right in Seattle). If I decide to do the Seward Park Spring Classic I will let everyone know - It is the 15th of April.

03-19-2007, 08:43 AM
But hey - more exciting - my next race report.

I decided to only race on Sunday this weekend (allergies had been bothering me). It was supposed to be nice... well it was drizzling once again when I got there. We set up our trainers under a picinic shelter and warmed up, not looking to forward to getting wet and gritty. We had a fairly big group on the road with a few more of our new gals out for their first race (and there were NO crashes this time -yeah!) One of the other teams had really dominating numbers out and the other teams were only there in ones and twos. Our races are short so once again the attacks started in the first couple of miles of the race. We held it together for the first lap (of 3) when one of the girls from the dominating team managed to get a gap. It took her teammates a little while to figure out that they should not be chasing their own gal..... but then they settled down and did exactly what they should have, let us (me and the two of my teammates who were left at the front) chase. We didn't get any help from the other teams either. So it was the three of us chasing, chasing, chasing. We could see the leader for most of the race, but there were too few of us to pull her back. Still it was a good race and my strongest teammate took 3rd. I was 9th - still in the top 10 and not too bad for all the work I'd been doing (and the horrible cough I have from the d@mn allergies - really it sounds worse than it is, so I hope my coughing and wheezing wasn't scaring people too much!). It did rain the whole time an I came back pretty digustingly muddy. Of course it stopped raining right after the race.... We cleaned off the bikes in the front yard after we got home. It was nice to be out in the sun.

03-19-2007, 08:52 AM
take care of that cough. you're right, it WOULD scare me.
cool that you took 9th... and then got to sit in t he sun.
that sun WAS nice, wasn't it?