Sunday, March 8, 2009

G'ville #4 River Falls

I went into this race feeling pretty good. The trainings gone well and I've had good results in the previous weeks. River Falls is a pretty brutal race with a 2-3 minute climb every lap. There were some very strong riders out there, pretty much a who's who for SE cycling. Due to a warmup snafu I ended up lining up dead last behind about 80 riders at the start. This course is on very narrow roads so I was a bit anxious about the race being decided without me seeing it but due some luck and aggressive riding I ended up near the front before the first lap was done.

The first 4 laps were fairly tame...the climbs were hard but not extreme and I rode in the first 15 riders most of the day. On the pentultimate 5th time up the climb the shit hit the fan with massive attacks and there was a major split in the group and about 15 guys rolling off the front. I was gapped by about 5 sec and totally buried myself to latch back on...a suicidal decent helped too. I can't wait to see those wattage numbers. It was nuts.

There were a couple guys off the front on the last lap but I was pretty much in survival mode and just sat in and recovered until Jay attacked and got away solo. I figured if he could stay away and catch the others that he would have a good shot at winning so I tried to slow the group as best that I could by riding at tempo on the front and people were happy to just follow for those critical few minutes. Things heated up near the finish with multiple attacks and I just kept myself glued to the wheel of one of the strongest guys there...I have a vivid image of a 1080 zipp rear wheel for some reason. ;-)

Coming into the finish I was sitting around 6th entering the climb, I opened a gap for LL so he could be near the front and I just held on. There was a massive surge that caught me a little off guard...when you see 15 guys fly past you on a climb you tend to get a bit discouraged so I didn't have that great of a finish. I ended up 20th and got 5th in the overall.