Team Stages

Old Man Strength

Started at the back and went easy. Picked up the pace after a bit of socializing and started clawing back groups. Ended 13th in my division and felt strong the whole race.

Wasn't sure how hard I would be able to go at the start. Started at the back of the grid. Started pretty easy, caught up with a fellow coached athelete and chatted with her for a minute. Then I started chasing down groups. Saw another fellow coached athelete on the side of the road (dropped chain) and slowed to see if she wanted help catching the next group. Did my best to pace her until the singletrack. Had to dismount and walk due to the traffic jam. Got separated from her after the single track. Spent the next 20 mins chasing trying to catch her. Caught her group and sat in for a minute or two. Didn't like the pace and decided to push a bit harder, no one came with. Caught a big group of about 12 that had a friend in it on the long road section. Decided to do my best to help my friend since he was on the front. Took a few long hard pulls to keep the overall pace up but the group continually slowed down everytime I came off the front. Tried to escape the group a couple times but they would reel me back in. I did whittle the group down by half but picked up a few riders that had been dropped by other groups up the road. Decided to finally drop the group in the last 4-5 miles as I could see the next group up the road and I wanted to bridge up to them. Put in a hard dig from about 5th wheel to get a good speed differential to discourage anyone from following as I didn't want to tow anyone to the next group. Made it halfway to the next group up the road and that's where I stayed, stuck in no-man's-land. 3 riders from the group behind bridged up to me and 2 of the three attacked straight away in the last 300 meters. I was able to drop the 3rd rider but didn't have enough in the tank to stay with the 2 attackers.  Felt surprisingly strong during the race. After I started chasing groups and going hard, I had decided on a certain level of discomfort that I was willing to endure for the next 2 hours and chased that feeling the whole race. Did decent power for the duration. Had I started at the front and rode hard from the beginning a podium wouldn't have been too far fetched. Not overly disappointed with the result (13th in my class, 30th overall) but actually pleased with the process and how strong I felt.

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