Friday, 22 February 2008

Training Not Racing

Thursday afternoon, driving from work to the velodrome and I am thinking: I don’t feel like racing tonight. In fact, I am over racing.. but I suspect it’s the thought of lining up next week at Vodafone at the Sid Patterson/Aust Madison Champs carnival and lack of recuperative sleep that’s making me feel that way. But I do feel like training, so I take myself to DISC to train, while everyone else is racing.

Scratch Race: I am tired, very tired and flat after 4am mornings and a couple of late nights. But for some reason I decide tonight is attack night. Sitting in the bunch, I know Alan “Sandy of the Devilish Chuckle” Sanderson, one of the Master Trackmen, is sitting behind me, babysitting some newbie youngsters from his club. As the person in front of me peels off from their pull, I hit the accelerator, feeling rather chuffed with myself for timing my attack with Sandy directly behind. Coming through for the lap, I realise that the whole bunch is still behind me, so I pull off and see young Melzy of the Dancing Legs on my wheel. Crap. Not what I expected or wanted. Where did Sandy go? I roll around for a couple of laps, then 3or 4 laps out, without even thinking about it, I launch myself again from the out the middle of the pack, on to the blue line around the banking, then use the slope to gain some speed to accelerate to the front and try for a breakaway. Well the breakaway didn’t really work, but it sent people yelling and scrambling, and made the bunch work a bit harder for the finish than they otherwise would have. I was surprised that I was able to launch myself at all, but it wasn’t anywhere near as snappy or decisive as it would have been if my legs weren’t lying in state in coffins.

Pointscore: Mini Me Coach gives me some suggestions as to riding out the pointscore. I find myself up the front in the early laps, and decide to accelerate early. The bunch is still with me so I then back right off down the back straight, then pick it up hard again, just to see what would happen. I knew full well MiniMe Coach’s words ringing round my head were definitely NOT what I was doing! I successfully managed to blow myself up and I retired from the race before the second sprint.

Motorpace: I was feeling good going into the motorpace, sugared up on jelly dinosaurs, and was lucky enough to catch the back of the bike on the 1st lap. I rolled down the back where it quickly got very messy with the newbies getting in the way or distrupting the flow. One new guy in particular, who was meant to be off the back, decided he would sit above me on the blue line and block me from moving up and forward. He was about to cop an earful from me but slid out the back at that point. I stayed at the back letting people slot in, mainly because I was worried about moving forward underneath riders as they fanned up the track. It just didn’t feel safe. 4 laps to go, I moved forward to midfield above the pack, getting ready for the bike coming off at 1.5 laps. Sandy and a few others come up with me, and I was happy to sit. But the momentum of moving forward set the sparks flying and trigger happy campers began “attacking” before the bike left the front. By the time the bike did leave the track, I had nothing left in the speed department, and rolled around for the finish. The race was messy, very scrappy, and we had a fall low on the home straight as the bell rang. I veered up high, and in doing so shed a bit of speed that I didn’t regain. I am surprised that’s the only fall we had, and it was a result of misjudged eagerness in acceleration.

I was happy with the way I rode. I was tired with non-functional legs, but I finished well and was able to make some moves. A good night’s training I reckon.

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