Don't take it personally!
By Jonathan Dugas | Aug 10, 2008
Race name: Glencoe Masters 4/5
Race date: Sunday, Aug 10, 2008
I did not race Glencoe last year, but heard great things about it so was looking forward to it. It was a short but good course and we had stunning racing weather.
A full eight XXX'ers lined up for this race, probably giving us about 15% of the field. It was nice knowing there was a whole stack of good riders in the bunch with me.
It was a reasonably fast race, which together with the 90 degree turns and short legs limited the attacks. A break started to form early with perhaps 10+ riders. Newt was in it, but I did not like our odds as he was alone in that bunch, and encouraged the others to close it down. Incidentally it did not take much as they only had maybe 5-7 s on the field.
This was the kind of course where position was relatively easy to maintain, but hard to get back once you lost it. Therefore I stuck to the front, and if that meant I had to take a short pull every now and then, so be it. Some guys were willing to rotate thru, and with each leg taking only about 30 s you were never on the front for very long before you could move over.
One 2CC rider, however, was reluctant and rebuffed my "encouragement" for him to pull through. "No--You chased down my break earlier!" he whined. Well sorry, mate, I forgot we were racing and just did not like the way you look, hence I closed down your move. . .I mean, come on, people---don't hold a grudge in the bunch. Expect other teams to chase your move, and when you get caught, plot your next attack. But in the mean time, pull thru and keep the pace high as it discourages other attacks and will likely benefit you in the long term. If nothing else then just rotate and do not take a pull if you are trying to conserve energy or are gassed already.
Halfway thru the race one rider attacked for a prime, and Newt, I, and the eventual winner left him out to dry for the next 5-6 laps, controlling the pace at the front and keeping him within 5-10 s. Note to self: when in a solo break with only 5-7 s, sit up an wait! With a gap that small the group will close you down when they want, so no need riding all on your lonesome. With three to go we closed the gap easily and rapidly and I managed to hold my good position in about fifth wheel.
With one to go I was sitting pretty in fourth wheel when Voytek from WDT put in a massive surge down the back straight. I was sure I would beat him to the line, but with my minimal training of late I was also sure at least 1-2 other guys would pass me. As it turned out only Newt came by, and I squeaked out a third as my heart felt like it was going to explode---I was poked!
Well done to Newt on his umpteenth 2nd! Seems like two is his favorite number. I did not really see the other guys in the bunch so much, but great riding as everyone stayed upright and finished in one piece, and that third should be enough to get my upgrade now, which means I can fulfill my comitment to the MDP by sacrificing myself in my next race and riding only for teammates who need a good result. Any takers?