Who got busy with racing in June? This guy. Why? Not entirely sure, but I got some good off-season training in, the scheduling worked out, and I was feeling strong so why not? 13 races, 3 podiums, 1 upgrade = good times.
The month started with an ugly night at Mount Tabor. It was wet and there was a crash on the first turn so we split from the start and it turned into a time trial. 6th. Maybe I had a shot at the monthly standings? … Until that weekend when I entered my first ever criterium, placed 2nd with relative ease, and knew it was time to move up. I also doubled up that day and tucked in to finish in the 4/5 pack a few hours later. Upgrade request submitted Monday and accepted just before the start of the next Tabor… I’d be riding with the 4s in a race that already gave me trouble… Except it didn’t and hasn’t; I’ve managed to stay with the pack until the final sprint all month save for last night (July, so it doesn’t matter for this post!) when I gave 100% [and failed] to win a bottle of beer. I couldn’t even keep up in 5 much of last year. Progress!
I’ve been heading up to PIR every Tuesday night for the 4/5 circuit race too. I missed the first one due to the weather, but managed to place well enough in the remaining four to take third overall for the month. PRIZES! I don’t know what I won, but I won something, and I eagerly await receiving it. Highlights were a 3rd and a 2nd. Both times it was all about taking it easy the entire race, reading who had the strong wheel, being close to the front on the final turn, and not going too soon or too late. I’ve never really considered myself a sprinter, but maybe that’s my jam?
The highlight of the month was a long weekend spent in Bend for the High Desert Omnium. Started with a time trial (went great, 25.2mph average [1mph faster than an early season TT], 8th in class), a crit that same afternoon (struggled, was dropped, but didn’t lose much ground on the pack, 11th), and a beautiful 60-mile road race the following morning (was gassed going up the final hill/finish and lost touch, 19th). I won nothing and didn’t even score a point for the overall, but it was an amazing weekend. I came home feeling like a pro. My life for those few days was nothing but cycling. It was awesome.
Things on the bike are going great. This is the road season I’ve wanted to have ever since I first attempted road racing a few years ago. Life has gotten out of the way and simply allowed me to ride. The bike itself has a couple of items that concern my wallet, but the wheels are still mostly round and the chain is in one piece so I’m just gonna keep riding it. With Tabor ending next week I’ll probably back off on racing altogether in July as the heat really begins to hit and focus on getting into peak shape for the late July/early August weekend crit series. After that? CROSS. YES, CROSS. YES.
I still have yet to win a damned race EVER. Including running, I’ve been 2nd [I think] five times and 3rd another few. Can someone run the odds on that? Will I ever get a chance to stand atop of the podium with both arms raised? Ideally, I’d do it before I reach Masters age (shit!) in two years. I think I can. I’m pretty sure I can. Just lacking a few watts. Core (I have none) and diet (I’m up about 5lbs right now) are going to be the focus in July. Might just be enough to get me that extra second on the line. Here goes!