Monday, April 30, 2007

Mad Cow Race Report

It was a great day for a race in Grand Junction. I felt like I was
fighting an uphill battle from the get-go as I lined up with 3's and
35+ opens. (The P,1,2,3 field only had about 5 people. Shame on the
3's in my race for not stepping up and playing with the big kids.)
There were probably 30-50 people in our group and I ended up with 8th

The course starts off with few miles of easy climbing before hitting
some steeps. We started off at a civil pace, but of course someone
had to push the pace and try to split up the group once we really
started heading uphill. It was a pretty serious effort, but I stuck
with it and stayed with the lead group.

A little while after the long climb, we made it to the loop part of
the course which we would be doing 3 laps around. It starts out with
a long set of rollers with virtually no downhill, then there's a nice
long descent and half mile steep climb. After some more "gentle"
climbing, you're back at the start of the loop. To make a long story
short, someone got away and stayed away near the beginning of the
second lap. The group was steadily dwindling with every climb. I
buried myself numerous times just to stay with some of the group
surges. I got gapped the last time up the steep hill of the loop and
couldn't ever reattach. I was within 20 feet and someone attacked
that group. Argh!

Another rider and I caught a guy that got popped off the main group
and the three of us rode together to the finish. I wasn't going to
sprint them for the finish, but one of the guys (who I had been
chatting with before the race) egged me on. I'm not used to
sprinting. For fun I threw my bike at the line, but I forgot to give
some sort of salute for my spectacular finish. Sorry Isaac, clearly
we need to work on that some more during the group rides.

Organization is clearly not this race's strong point. It had a little
bit of an outlaw feel to it this year. There was no official riding
with us and I think some people's general feeling was "What yellow
line?". That aside, this is probably my favorite course of the year.
Great climbing and spectacular views. Hopefully it doesn't get
scheduled over a front range race next year, because I'd love to get
some more people out there to race. It's a great weekend hang. We
skipped the downtown Fruita crit on Sunday and biked through through the
Colorado National Monument instead. Then we hit some wineries before heading

Here are a couple pictures of part of the first big climb of the race course:

No comments: