Saturday, April 10, 2010

Hopbrook Dam Mountain Bike Race

Today was my first "real" race of the year-before now, everything else has had "training" in the title. So, I kicked off my "official" racing season mountain bike style, at Hopbrook Dam in Middlebury.

So, 5.3 mile laps, and only two laps for sport (very short). The fact the race was only 10.6 miles turned this race into a sprint race of sorts. My final time was just over an hour, 1:00:39. Really kind of disappointing it wasn't 3 laps, but what can you do.

Anyway, here's my log.

I think the major obstacle each lap is pretty easy to identify. Very steep hill a 1/3 of the way through each lap. I was stupid the first lap and opened up way too hard, and ended up needing a couple minutes of recovery just as I hit the hill. Not good. I totally forgot how hard that hill was.

As you can see in #'s 2 and 3, I definitely wasn't holding back-average heart rate above LT, and the majority of the time spent in zone 3, just over LT. It hurt.

As for the race itself, mine was pretty unexciting. I led the race for about 1.5 miles with my stupid, uh, heroic attack off the line, and I hit the hill and lost 3 spots. After I got down said hill, I chased 2nd and 3rd place, who were always turning the far corner just as I entered a longer section. So I could see my targets, but never really pulled forward, and they never pulled away. Looking behind, I saw no one. Besides a couple ladies I passed and a dude with a flat tire, my only company the whole race were the random spectators walking the course. So after said 1.5 miles, my placing was decided-4th.

Anyway, all that loneliness leads to a huge mental battle. I suck at mental battles. They suck. So maybe it was good the race was relatively short. I found myself wandering across the trail, picking stupid lines, more out of boredom than anything. There was just no concentration.

So, my 4th place won me a pair of gloves. So I dug into the bin and found...Specialized Body Geometry gloves. I was so freaking excited.

I love Specialized Body Geometry gloves so much, I have used the same pair for the last 4 years.

They're falling apart. Each has at least 4 holes, all getting larger. The "Body Geometry" part of the Body Geometry gloves are falling off. The soft wiper portion of the glove has become a great exfoliater. They kinda smell funny. And. They. Are. Comfy.

My new gloves, with a suggest retail price of $25, left me paying an effective $8 for a great venue, a great experience, a fantastic hour of training, and a small list of things to work on in future races.

1. Concentration
2. Starts and Recovering
3. Concentration
4. Tire Pressure-needed a little less today
5. Concentration
6. Remember my technical skills
7. Concentration

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