Thursday, 31 December 2009

Xmas Carnivals 2009


Dec 28/29/20

There were strong entries, particularly at Bendigo, in both numbers and quality of competition, allowing for 2 grades for most of the series. Although how Thomay Michaltsis makes B grade rather than A beats me! The weather was great, low 30s on the first two days, with Shepp being a stinker in the high 30s. Racing was strong, competitive but friendly.

A bit of a joke with the Chief Comm FLN, before the first race of the meet, Maryborough. (BTW, check out the intensity of the light. hot! yes!!)

Time to get serious - find out what's in the legs after 7 rides in 2 weeks, and to see if the virus has gone. Came 5th, with final position of 4th after a relegation.

Maryborough on Monday was very different to Country Tracks - dry for one! I rode better than I anticipated, and even suggested to Shirley Amy we ride the women's madison for a laugh. Unfortunately there weren't enough entries, so a pointscore was offered instead. Shirley and I sat it out - I wouldn't have lasted the distance, and was very aware of keeping myself strong for another two days of racing.

Next day Bendigo. Me making my Big Move of the meet, attacking with 400m to go in the B Grade Scratch. I blew up, and came in at the back of the bunch, having dropped a few on the way home.

1000m handicap, me at third wheel, having worked well with Sophie Waldron and Jess Morgan, about to get hit by the back markers in the home lap. I stayed with them and finished midfield. We again worked well in the 2000m handicap, keeping the backmarkers at bay until the final lap. I unfortunately was slow to step out with the chasing group as they came through and was boxed in, unable to get out until they had gone. I chased them down, finishing off the back but midfield again. There were 19 women entries for Maryborough and Bendigo, slightly less for Shepp the final day.

Bendigo is a big flat open track, D shaped and rather unique. Although I prefer a shorter, more traditional track, I rode quite well on Tuesday night, finally hitting my limit with 4 to go in the final scratch race of the night, after the legs and brain had a bit of a discussion, which I was privy too, but had no real say in the matter. After a 6 or more week racing hiatus (excluding Country's at the end of November, which was a different beast), it was a hoot to be donning the suit and spinning the wheels! Handicaps, scratches, derbies and kierins = good racing and a real blast.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Happy Summer Soltice

Yep, it was two days ago, but happy longest day of the year celebrations everyone!

O yeah! And merry christmas for tomorrow! I'm out for the regular Christmas morning ride - it's the best morning of the year to ride. Then it's onto some much anticipated Tasmanian and French bubbly and brilliant food for lunch.

Be safe everyone. Hope Santa brings you lots of nice presents, love and happiness for your day tomorrow.

Serious training resumes on Boxing Day to help shift those sneaking calories lingering from a week of chillin'. :-)

Monday, 21 December 2009

I forgot I am a competitive cyclist

and pretended that I was a regular human being over the weekend, and went eating, drinking and shopping. I think I was still privately venting about the omnium changes, because I even bought some clothes, expensive local designer clothes, for work. Plus some new red shoes. They are very red.

Friday night saw me at the Aust Madison Champs, swanning around shmoozing, and drinking cheap bubbly and eating not much at all, chatting up potential kit sponsors for 2010, catching up with old buddies, some long lost from O/S. All in all a fun night. O yeah, there was some racing too! I remember some of that.

Saturday, well, read para 1 for Saturday's adventures in Wonderland. Soulfood for lunch: YUM!!! Denches for fruit mince pies: average. I made my own pies, complete with fruit mince I made a week earlier. Mine pwn Denches no argument. Sourced some valrhona chocolate to coat my new found speciality: rum balls. Yeah, but these are not just any rum balls, and certainly nothing like Mother used to make. Mine make my mother's look like CWA fare. O wait! That's where she got the recipe from: long live the weetbix and condensed milk!!

I attempted some training last night, on the fixed wheel. It hurt, but fully justified the sparkling burgunday I drank later with dinner, capping off a run of 5 days straight drinking every night. With dinner of course. Xmas Carnivals are only 7 days away; time to stop with the alcohol, seasonal food and do some training as well. Or, maybe I could stay in denial, and keep partying....

Friday, 18 December 2009

UCI Fucks Omnium

As reported in Cyclingnews this morning, the UCI has implemented changes to the omnium, introducing a sixth event: the elimination, and extending the flying 200m to a flying 250m. Apart from Cyclingnews not getting that the original 200m was flying, never standing, these modifications change the nature of the omnium from one where an enduro with a reasonable kick could do well, to being a dog's breakfast of full length endurance events. Sprinterly types need not apply.

I understand if these changes were made solely for the Olymnpic program, with this omnium format known as the Olympic Omnium. Makes sense.

But no, the UCI in their incredible policy-making, well-meaning, poorly -judged governance, has decided that these changes will be across the board, commencing with the World Champs next year. So those poor cherubs who have been training for the current, sorry, former omnium format, will now have to suddenly reconsider that event, or beef their training up to be able to meet the new distances imposed, whilst getting their brains around the new format.

Sounds to me like the UCI is trying to have its cake and throw it in our little trackie faces too. As an omnium promoter, this has ramifications for me locally. It certainly makes the omnium harder, particularly as we use it to encourage newbies and novices out into the competitive arena. It will also impact on our entries, as we will lose some girls with the increased distances. Masters and junior distances will remain as is. It makes for a longer day, which impacts on our officials and helpers, as well as the competitors. Already it's an 8 hour day for 50 odd competitors. How feasible will it be to run one, even as a State Championship, locally?

Of course, that may be the UCI's secret plan: making the thing so long it can't be raced in one day. So, it is raced over 2 or 3 days. Guess what?! We are then back to having "normal" pursuits, points etc, well as normal as you can get without having them as individual events. Maybe this is a clever, sneaky ploy on behalf of the UCI? Maybe they are not as self absorbed as I am currently thinking they are....??? But somehow, I doubt it... it will just be one incredibly long, arduous day for all concerned, officials and competitors.

I think it's time for the Olympics to lose it's be-all end-all focus for track cycling, as it has done in equestrian disciplines, and other sports, where World Cups and World Championships carry more kudos than an Olympic medal. Let's face it, the Olympics is not that important for road cyclists, where the Tour de France and Classics hold more weight for the elites/pros. Hmm maybe the new omnium will for those roadies as well.


fixie style

fixi3 polo en guadalajara from e2pora on Vimeo.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

-12 feels like -24

Farenheit that is. I love this blog post, because it's the antithesis of what we Southern Hemisphereans are experiencing right now, and probably so far removed from any kind of Australian reality, even in the Alps!

There are just so many things wrong with the blog post, where do I begin? Minus 12 feeling like minus 24?? Either way, it simply feels fucking cold!! Full stop!!! Who rides out in that kind of cold??? And freezing water bottles?? We start off with frozen drink, which becomes warm enough to make a cup of tea within an hour of riding. And what's with the bare face?? How could she breath in that kind of cold without lungburn? I wouldn't be eating sugar girl, I'd be eating family blocks of chocolate!

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Game On

because I really couldn't let go, and then Marty talked me into it last night over some lat pulldowns, and I remembered the huge grin on Shirley Amy's face when she attacked the bunch in the scratch at Country's.

Xmas Carnivals are back on.

And why not? What's the worst that can happen? Same as last season. Big deal. So long as I am grinning like Shirley and mean it, that's all that counts. It's a nice lesson to take home.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Letting Go

The time has come to admit defeat: with 2 weeks of lost training thanks to this virus thing, and at least another few days likely before I can really ramp my training back up to pre Country Champs volume and intensity, it’s time to let the Xmas Carnivals slip off my race calendar for another year. I missed last year thanks to an economic crisis, this year, thanks to The Lurgy.

It’s hard to let it go. I was looking forward to spending three days away, living out of the car and motels, pretending to be a pro trackie for a brief moment of my holidays. But seriously, the chances of having the necessary fitness back in the next two weeks are so low as to be “are you kidding me???” status.

I managed 30 easy km on the trainer yesterday afternoon, my first ride since last Tuesday, from which it took me all week to recover. Yesterday I even did three 15 second low resistance sprints. Then I felt ill…. Really Ill… as in keep breathing deeply and the nausea WILL go away, as will the direly urgent, sudden need to roll up in a ball and sleep.

So this week will be simply getting my body used to working daily again, and testing what limits it currently has on its capacity for suffering. The suffermeter‘s red line will be low, I suspect. Results based on that testing will determine what I do next week. Who knows, I may be ok by the follow week to race at open level, in the summer heat of central Victoria, but I’m not prepared to put money on. So I am currently working on simply letting go….

Thursday, 10 December 2009

A not so bright week

thanks to this lurgy thing that is hindering my training, and energy levels. Today my lungs are full of dust, but the mass that is sitting on my chest won't budge. It makes any kind of intense training (you know - the kind required of competitive cyclists on a regular basis) nearly impossible to finish,let alone start.

It's four months to Nationals (I counted them today), and I am about lose one to this lurgy ie a fortnight off serious training, a fortnight (if I am lucky!!) of getting back to where I was. No Scotty's for me this weekend, and I am beginning to think Xmas Carnivals are going to be a bit of a joke, and part of my racing back into fitness aka training!! schedule, rather than anything serious.

Such is life. Sleep is the order of the day. Now if I can just stop going to meetings, and catching up on domestic stuff .....

At least I am finding the odd 20 min each night to do some reading.. just a pity its sport related, not study related :-D

Monday, 7 December 2009

A Bright Weekend

This weekend I headed up to Bright to be soigneur for Mr Flowerpants, in his debut at the Tour of Bright. It’s been a long while since I have been to Bright, and now I wonder why I’ve left it so long. It truly is a beautiful part of the State.

I had plans to do some hill work while there – it’s almost a waste not to. But after a ride out to Wandiligong, which is barely more rigourous than Beach Road, and finding that a bit overwhelming, I realised my hopes for Tawonga Gap would be just that: hopes. Being hurt by a flattish road meant I was still getting over whatever lurgy I had, and needed to be nice to myself! So I was :-D

The TOB is HUGE!! And very well run, for such a large event. Congratulations to the Alpine Cycling Club as promoter/organiser and to all the officials and support for an excellent event.

Highlights were being part of a “cycling town” for the weekend, catching up with friends, one of whom I’ve not seen for over a year, being support instead of main actor, cherries picked that morning, Bright Brewery beers, cold baths post ride, yummy non-athletic food, the scenery, the gorgeous weather. The only downside was spending Saturday afternoon in my jeans, then continually hopping on and off my bike to travel between accommodation, startlines, and coffee shops! 12km in total on the bike in jeans. Not recommended!

Thursday, 3 December 2009

The Lurgy Blues

Saturday night I was a little despondent, but kept cheery by good company. I put it down to my flying 200 time.

Sunday I was over it, down in the dumps, critical, grumpy, tired and heavy legged. I put it down to 2 days of bad weather and tiredness. Sunday night I was way over it. I put it down to exhaustion.

Monday I was flat and unenthused, yet overly anxious about training and racing. I had a pretty average (attitude wise) gym session. I put it down to the weekend, racing, and a very stressful and busy fortnight leading up to the weekend.

Tuesday I woke up feeling like complete shit. I ached, felt like I had been beaten up, with a mass sinus blockage. I put it down to something akin to DOMS syndrome ie it takes 2 days after a work out to hit you. Tuesday I progressively got worse, and went to bed with a razor stuck in my throat, and a very tender body. I was with lurgy.

It's interesting to review this progression of attitudinal, and physical decline: which came first? Was the lurgy a result of my brain and heart shutting down on this thing called track cycling, or were they shutting down because of the blossoming lurgy? Either way, I've not had a break since mid-year, so I despite feeling a little better today and capable of an easy workout, I am giving myself the rest of the week off, with some fun rides prescribed for the weekend in Bright. A bit of freshening up and fun pedalling for post-lurgy therapy! Just what my track bike ordered!