Green mountain was soooo much fun. Best road race I've ever done....by a long shot.
Traveled there with team Ontario, making the trip a bit more interesting as I would get to know some new faces, and interact with those I've really only seen in the pack. Everyone was chill and it made for a smooth trip.
Stage 1 was the uphill TT. Also my first TT (excluding the Elliot lake hill-climb chain-drop fest) so it was going to be a learning experience. In the morning we all rode the course together as a team. Being the latest starter, 11ish, and being saddled up at 8am for the pre-ride, I took it easy and let everyone hammer past. I felt like crap, heart-rate shot up to threshold as the team blew by (girls too) leaving me a little worried. After that a had a few hours to get my shit together....three cups of green mountain coffee and more oatmeal loaded with Vermont maple syrup seemed to set me straight. On the bike again I felt much better, and my warmup went smooth.
I think I started a little too hard cause I felt solid the first 3km, caught my 30 second man at the top of the hill, then when I hit the headwind I felt soo weak. He passed me back on the flats, and then the guy behind me blew past with 2km to go. Held off the next guy, finishing with nothing in the tank. Time was good enough to beat about 25 guys, yay! Reason for not winning - no skin suit, no shoe covers, no cone helmet, no disc wheel, non aero frame.........
Stage 2 was much more fun. we did 2 50km laps, with a long climb out, and long decent back each time. Pace was nice and quick but the only time I was in difficulty was leading up to the second KOM. I suffered for a few km, but held my ground, not allowing myself to slip back. Decent was easy, and everything came back together, for a nice bunch kick. 1 man was allowed to escape and solo for the win, then the rest of us battled. I was fighting some cramps coming in, and decided to stay seated to the line. Got lucky with an opening on the left and motored by a bunch of guys to snag 22nd. Could have been a lot better, could have been worse.
Stage 3 was the queen stage with the epic mountain top finish on App Gap. Up until the base of this beast, racing was a blast. Full gas, attack attack attack, and I was riding the front end comfortably through all of this. I was making the splits/selections, but things were not breaking up too much. A break of 12 went clear mid raceish and held on till the end. I was off the front a couple times in small moves that hovered behind the break, but never took the risk and jumped for it. we where 20sec back at one point and I'm sure I could have made it, but chose to race conservatively instead. This was smart cause my legs shat the bed on me just before the App Gap began, choosing to cramp badd! Did my own thing from there, but still my quads locked and pulsed and twitched. I had to stop and stretch them. After this pit stop I got going quite well, caught and passed everyone who was around me pre-stopping, and even passed some new faces on the final steeeep pitch.
Stage 4 was cancelled due to heavy rain. My emotions were mixed towards the cancellation, as I love racing crits, and this course looked sweet, but at the same time my legs hurt from the cramping and I could have been dropped. I will never know what could have happened.
So once again I was F'ed by cramps. Yes I do drink a lot, and I do eat during the race. Not sure I could fit anymore salty sugary crap in me without puking it all over myself. Maybe there is something wrong with me were my muscles are not absorbing water or something. Maybe I need to take salt pills like those triathlon guys do. Maybe my muscles need rest? No idea. Season is just about done anyway. MTB provincials is Sunday, and I'm feeling good about it. Might be getting sick though...hope not. Goal is to be in, or near the top 10, depending on who's there. Would be nice to hang onto 10th in the series!
Wish me luck!