Wow, it has been a while. I guess this is the first time I've really had the urge to write on my blog. It's mostly about bike racing, which is awesome because what I felt on the bike today during the race was actually pretty cool in my opinion. This was one of my better races of the season, so far this year.
Yesterday I raced the Bannock Street Criterium in Denver. I woke up early to eat breakfast, went for a easy spin ride, then a good nap. Before leaving for the race, I ate again (yeah I know, I'm going to get fat). Everything was going according to plan until me and a couple of friends were warming up on the bike path at the race and a bee bounced off of my shoulder and then stung my leg. I know first world problems right? When the biggest of your worries before a bike race is getting stung by a bee, I have never had a bad reaction to bee stings so I wasn't too worried, hahaha. "OUCH" I yelled out like a little girl while riding. I pulled over and got the stinger out and decided there was nothing I could do, so I kept warming up before the race and tried to not irritate it.
It was hot at the race course, so I opted to start towards the back and stay cool in the shade and not bake in the sun like most of the other racers were, although a good start position can be crucial, I know. I didn't think this was going to be a risk so I didn't sweat it. Maybe it was all of the adrenalin from the bee sting?
Anyways within the first couple of laps I managed to get to the front and tried to hold my position there throughout the race, as well as asserting myself into break away moves that could be potentially dangerous. I had a team mate in the race as we switched off on a lot of break away attempts. Last year a break went very early on and that was the race. Not this year, it all came down to a field sprint.
With 5 laps to go I found my team mate Andrew's wheel and had let him know that I was behind him. From there I tried to talk Andrew through what I thought would be the most ideal lead-out for the situation we were in together. With a couple laps to go things got dicey and I heard somebody say; "take it down a notch", and I don't know who said it or who they were talking to but in my mind I thought *Take it down a notch? There's a couple laps to go...if anything I'm trying to take it up a notch and win a bike race here* Who ever said this could have been referring to a previous aggressive move, but I didn't get yelled at by anybody I made contact or bumped shoulders with, so no harm no foul in my opinion. Anyways I didn't have time to worry about any of that, it was now 1 to go and things were looking great for me and my lead out man, which I was so grateful to have for a change! Others racers seemed to respect the lead-out that my teammate was executing oh so greatly, so I think that was important as well.
My team mate just started to lead me out on the uphill with about 1000m to go before the right hand turn at 750 meters to go...then I saw Kit Recca attack on the inside before we hit the last turn. I had to jump off of my team mates wheel when things got crazy to re-adjust my line coming into the last corner and to make up some ground on Kit. We went around the corner with about 700 meters to go and I thought it was time to go as I was coming out of the turn, not hesitating or waiting for anybody else to start the sprint, I opened it up, as I thought it was right at the time. It was looking great until about 5 meters to go when a wheel from George Simpson popped up on my right side and barely nipped me at the line by a half wheel. I couldn't hold him off at the very end, DANG!!! 2nd place for me, but I left it all on the line and wasn't complaining with the result.
After the race George had told me "yeah you started to pull away and gap me at first and then I caught you" says the winner of the Colorado Collegiate Conference Champion. I'm thinking he got some sling shot action from my draft and that was enough to edge me out right at the line, but I could be wrong. Or it could have been the brute strength that comes along with being a good time trial rider as well.
There were things that I think I could have done better for next time, but thats part of learning to race and how I'll get better. Me and my team mate walked away with some serious cash each, so we weren't complaining; plus we both couldn't stop smiling because we were both happy with how it turned out and it looked like we both had fun. It was good to feel this on the bike even though I didn't get the win. At the end of the day I gave it all I could with the situation I was given, walked away with a result, some cash, and most of importantly had real fun, which was great to feel on the bike.
Ok, thats all I have to report for now, thanks for reading, talk soon.
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