Thursday, June 28, 2007

Track Tuesday, June 12th

This past Tuesday I went to the track again. The first picture is of me and Jason, a teammate of mine. In the background you can see people warming up on the track. To be honest, I’m writing this about a week after racing, and these nights tend to blend together, so I don’t remember exactly what races I did and what exciting things transpired, but I’m sure I learned a lot and had a good time. I mean, look how large my smile is in that picture! I’m almost positive I had a good time.

Kidding aside, the second picture has a good story behind it. To give a little background, I’m still not very comfortable with racing in a pack. I never want to sit in and draft, because I’m afraid I’ll get boxed in and be unable to make a move. I like to be out front, but being out front takes a lot of energy. I had talked about it with Cale a week or so before and he and I thought that, during a three lap race, I might have the strength to stay out front the whole time and have the energy to hold of the women behind me sprinting in the final stretch. This was an eight lap race, and on the end of the third or fourth lap, the two women in front (orange helmet and blue helmet) slowed way down as we came out of turn four. This is universal sign for “I don’t wanna lead anymore, someone else do it now.” I was above them on the track, riding abreast, matching their pace and wondering if I should go for it. There were about five laps left, and I didn’t know if I could hold the lead, but I wanted to try. As I passed by the spot where I knew Cale was watching from, I turned my head and looked him in the eye. I knew he’d be able to see what was going on, and what I was thinking about doing. He nodded slowly and emphatically up and down and mouthed, “Yes.” I gave a single sober nod back and dropped down to lead, which is exactly when the second picture was taken. Slick, huh? It kind of felt like a scene from a movie, with indecision and mind reading and all. However, it was not because, were it a movie, I would have went on to win. On the seventh lap, I decided to speed up a little to try to shake the rest of the pack. I should have either sped up more or maintained the same pace, because I basically just tired myself out too much. I led for the eighth lap up until the fourth turn, after which a lot of the pack passed me by because I just didn’t have the energy to hold them off. That was a little disappointing, but I think I learned a good lesson. Next time I’ll either keep the same pace and my energy, or I’ll make a serious jump either on the second to last or the last lap. It helped give me a little confidence, though, because now that I’ve done it, it seems less daunting.

No comments: