Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Super Ketchup: Cedarburg Crit

Long time, no post.

Where to start! Last Tuesday I did the Cedarburg crit and got 7th place. But wait! There are excuses! In the second lap or so, a break of four got off the front and the women ahead of me let them get away. Swear. I got ahead of the pack and tried to pull the break back in for about a lap before I got tired out. Nobody else stepped up to pull, so the break was gone and that was that. The race for 5th was on.

About half way through the race, I dropped my chain part of the way up a hill. At that point I was discouraged and was ready to forget it. I stood and cursed for a few seconds before a woman from the sidelines came over and physically made me put my chain back on. I grudgingly got back on and looked up the road for the pack- just disappearing over the crest of the hill. Aaarg.

A little bit of my old self came back- I was determined to catch back up. I worried that because I had fallen off the back, I would be too tired to stay in, or do much even if I caught up. On the other hand, even if I couldn't stick in, I'd be further than if I quit just then. Um, that sounds kinda stupid, but that's the revelation I had.

So I dug in for a little hurt. As I biked past the guys cheering me on, I don't think they could help but notice I was a hundred plus (probably much, much more ;) ) yards off the back. They cheered but it kinda sounded like 'We applaud your effort, but understand if you can't catch the peloton.' It made me a little more determined to catch up with the pack, no matter how badly I would perform in the final sprint.

Long(er) story short, I caught up and got back in after two painful laps. I shirked my pulling duties and sat back in the pack. I noticed that around the final corner, the ladies would usually put on the brakes a little bit, so for the last lap I got out front and tried to shake them a bit (I should have been saving my energy instead). I flowed through the last corner with the rest of the pack right behind me. I got up off of the saddle and pushed it up the hill toward the finish line. I feel like I could have been going harder, because my head wasn't really in it, but I think I always feel like I could have gone faster after the fact. Two of the girls got out ahead of me and I got seventh. The end.

Photos by Aaron Dykstra

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