Okay so I figured seeing this was a training race, it would be a good time for a training blog post.
I don't think the conditions could have gotten any better for us, it was sunny and warm. However, there was a decent wind that affected the home stretch leading to the finish line. The course was 0.8 miles long (1.5 km) consisting of a decent and then an immediate climb. The climb was 350m long with a max gradient of approximately 5%, and a total acent of about 85ft. Not as ridiculous a number as Ashton and I had posted in out post race Facebook messages having confused the length of the climb with the total ascent per lap. Opps.
Members for the team that showed up to the event were Ashston, Eric, and myself (Jeff). This was Eric's first real experience with a crit, seeing Binghamton had no turns. He participated in the C race/skills clinic and came in 3rd during the race part. He was a total gentlemen and let the two ladies ahead of him cross the line, which he could have easily pulled back. All three of us participated in the B race, where me and Ashton were predicting to do well. This is were some misfortunes turned on us.
This was a training race so totally understandable that this things would happen. The organizer forgot a video camera for the finish line, had no final lap bell, and the first lap of the race was SUPPOSE to be neutral so everyone could see the course one more time before the race. This only led to an epic fail, seeing people started racing on the ascent spreading the group out and leaving people to really fight for positions.
As the race went on, which was 20 laps, the field became spread out very quickly. On about the 4th lap Ashton and I got boxed in on the climb by some of the weaker riders and were slowed down substantially. I caught a break by being on Ashton's wheel and was able to pull around and sprint across the gap. From here on it was pretty much a normal race and I don't believe there was a single crash. I tried working with some riders, but they had no clue what i was talking about......a pace line.
The lack of preparedness by the race official took over on the final laps. With them not pulling anyone from the race things got a little hectic towards knowing which lap you were on. I'm pretty sure I remember seeing 11 laps left and then on the next lap i saw there were 6. Nevertheless, as I crossed the finish line with one lap to go, that's what I did one lap. However, as told by Ashton's dad after the race, I think we forgot to do the final lap (but everyone else behind me did the same thing). This could have played into my hands seeing I finished behind the one and two finishers. Thought it was funny some guy wanted to sprint with me to the finish line for like a 11th or 12th spot. I doubt there will be official results posted seeing things got so confusing. But hey, it counts towards our race totals.
I then tried racing in the A race (10 minutes after the B race), which consisted of mainly Cat. 1-3 and some scattered 4s. Before the race I asked the organizer how many laps i would have to do to get credit and his response, "that's a good question, I have no idea." Anyways, I gave it a go, soon to be at the back of the group. I did 3 of the 25 laps, just did not have the legs to keep pace. A lap or two later the organizer starting pulling people from the race and at a pretty fast rate too. I think he realized he couldn't keep track of everyone. Overall it was a fun time, and I had to good crew cheering me on during the A race, where i pretty much joked around with for three laps.