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  • How long to be a credible Cat 4 or am I just crap (road content)
  • Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Subscriber

    I marshalled Tameside last night, never seen crit racing before so was cool to see it in action. Well done crazy-legs, karlwoof and the sanity assassin, looked like serious hard work!
    Fancy giving the 4th cat race a go next year, but would need to learn how to ride a road bike round a corner first. Apparently you can do stuff on that circuit over winter to develop skills.

    From reading on here I expected the 4th cat race to be a bit of a circus, with the higher cats being smooth perfection. Didn’t look that way to me – plenty of verbal argy bargy in the 1/2/3 race – FFS MATE HOLD YOUR LINE!! FKING HELL LAD CAN YOU RIDE A BIKE ?!
    4th cat seemed to go round in good order.

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
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    Did you singlespeed it?

    No. Red S-Works (old alu version), black kit was me. I spoke to karlwoof very briefly as he was lining up, didn’t see you Jonny (although I spoke to a team-mate of yours).

    Didn’t look that way to me – plenty of verbal argy bargy in the 1/2/3 race – FFS MATE HOLD YOUR LINE!! FKING HELL LAD CAN YOU RIDE A BIKE ?!
    4th cat seemed to go round in good order.

    Actually the standard of riding was very good except for one rider. Big lad, proper powerhouse but there was no smoothness to it, he was all over the bike, fighting it, trying to move up in the bunch. He was with our (lapped) group and when the bunch came round he was trying all sorts to move up through it, cutting in and around riders.

    He got told by about 3 different people just to chill the **** out – lapped rider therefore sit at the back and stop messing around.

    To be fair to him he did apologise although afterwards he was moaning to his team-mate that he had been holding his line and didn’t understand why people were telling him off.
    Other than that, standards were very good.

    Well done on your result Jonny!

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    What’s happening a Hillindon from Sept-Feb TiRed?

    1) BC West Thames races move to Saturdays for the few remaining races
    2) There will be two more TCC Vets races – try and get to the last one if you can (E1234) in three weeks time.
    3) There is likely to be a couple of points grabber races after that.
    4) IMPERIAL WINTER SERIES!!! Will run through from December until March.

    Plenty of Surrey League races left including our own National level Ottershaw series for thirds and above. Some races at Cyclopark too.

    Most circuits “darn sarf” will be running some form of Winter Series I expect, but I haven’t looked in detail yet. Hillingdon will be full and the IWS is probably the premium winter race series in the country – races sell out in hours on RiderHQ.

    karlwoof
    Member

    Heyup,

    Aye i did most of the graft and got cut up on the final lap and had to situp to avoid a big get down. Still, a decent training session and I’ll be back next week.

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    Last Westerly 10 (well 10 and a bit) at Hillingdon tonight. I’m signed up for a Surrey League Team Time Trial so I thought I’d give the Shorter a run (rather than just turbo with bad wrist).

    Anyway 11 laps, at a respectable 2:09 per lap or 26.3 mph with a wind up the drag. Sixth equal and 10 seconds off a podium. Pleased with that but it’s not road racing. Bike was great though. 23 years old and never missed a beat.

    mrblobby
    Member

    Another club TT here and yet another second place. Annoyingly behind someone I’ve finished ahead of whenever we’ve both raced this year. A bad ride too, not raced in a while and just fell back into some old bad habits. Just need to race more. Might have to resurrect the bike racing doldrums thread!

    Buy something, that’ll cheer you up…ooooh look, shiny!!

    mrblobby
    Member

    Hmm yes, that does usually work.

    Anyway after stewing about it for a while I’ve a bit more perspective on it today. Was still a course PB, and was trying a few new things out too which seemed to work… so shall take encouragement from the positives and learn from (not dwell on!) the negatives 🙂

    hjghg5
    Member

    I return from the world of Cat 2/3/4 ladies stage races and I’m still (just!) in one piece.

    I didn’t have any major goals as this was my first road race let alone my first stage race, and I’ve only done one circuit race before. I expected to get dropped but just hoped that I’d hold on for long enough to learn stuff along the way.

    The main learning experience was two things I knew from reading up but had never had demonstrated properly.

    1. If you’re not moving forward you’re moving back. No matter how much I tried to get off the back, the second I relaxed I’d find myself back there. So there was a lot of chasing harder out of corners than I’d have had to if I had better positioning. But I always made it back on in the end.

    2. Don’t race what you can’t afford to replace… Crashing was one of my fears about racing, but I figured that I’d get dropped anyway so didn’t need to worry too much about it. But within the last km I was still with the group (albeit at the back of it). And then there was a big pile up in front of me. I had time to brake hard, lock the wheels up and eject myself (my bike ended up on top of one of the riders in front but I didn’t). It could have been worse – some scratches on my leg which I think are catching the chainring as I ejected rather than the road, and some cosmetic damage to replaceable bits of the bike (bar tape, QR skewer, pedal etc). The one more expensive bit is that I appear to have completely screwed the saddle – the left hand side is noticeably lower than the right. But as crashes go it could have been a lot worse (end even the people who looked in quite a bad state were apparently relatively OK).

    The state of the saddle made the second stage TT a little interesting – as someone said, it’s not something you bring a spare of!

    But I survived 🙂

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    Back from Surrey League 2/3. And yes a big pile up at the finish. Colnago C59 with Dura Ace skidded across the road and I rode over it before stopping in a bush and coasting the last 200 m to the finish. The bars smashed the top tube to pieces 🙁 .

    Anyway I held onto the bunch, did a little blocking, had something for the accelerations and was in the mix at the front of the main bunch. Happy I stayed up to be honest. First 2/3 level road race I didn’t get dropped 🙂

    karlwoof
    Member

    Back at Tameside for another stab at the 4th cat race tomorrow. Anyone else there for the 2/3/4 or 4th only?

    Haze
    Member

    My final BC road race of the year (2/3/4) got cancelled Saturday afternoon due to emergency road works, that just leaves me with our LVRC race in September.

    There are 2/3/4 crits over the next two Tuesdays both at 50 mins plus 5 laps, although I may sack them off and focus on laps of the RR course…

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Subscriber

    Back at Tameside for another stab at the 4th cat race tomorrow. Anyone else there for the 2/3/4 or 4th only?

    Probably do the 2/3/4 again. Weather permitting – I refuse to race in the rain!

    adsh
    Member

    Seeing as I crashed this thread in May (moaning about lack of MTB results) I’ll do so again in the spirit of bragging.

    I looked at the amount of time I was ‘in zone’ on my long MTB training rides and moved across to training on the road plus made my intervals longer and added more Z3 rides.

    Went to Brighton Big Dog at the end of a training block and with the goal
    of getting racing miles in for training, had less fear of blowing up, so managed to avoid first lap bottleneck by trashing self on first lap. Somehow managed the pain, ground laps out for 6hrs at Z4 and came 2nd in Grand Vets 😀 Noticeable how the intervals helped on the hills and the Z3 on the flat. 2 weeks average TSS 900 so rest and taper due.

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    Nice one adsh, great result! I recently came 25th Vet in an Eastern League race my best result against formidable competition, and like you I can “feel” where the improvements have come.

    I find myself obsessed though, now looking at 2016 as coming in XC experienced and wanting to ride stronger, with overall league table / BC results of this year to aim to beat – for example I won’t settle for less than top 20 of the above.

    Having discovered a gym in our Holiday hotel I found a bike whereby I can dial in watts based intervals/climbs so am spending an hour every other day ticking over in a TT or tops position a la Turbo. The hotel gym supervisor came over and watched me push through one of 7 4min >FTP intervals on Sunday and told me he’d never seen a holidaymaker sweat from there forearms and legs like I was – but he remarked upon the stony determination on my forward looking only face which I felt was I good boost for me mentally.

    @TiRed – thanks for the info and good to see you racing again, I’ll see you in December!

    will
    Member

    Good work Adsh.

    Kryton – Bought that bloody cross bike yet?

    Anybody doing the Manchester Wheelers 2 day stage race end of August? If so, see you there. 8)

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    No Will, I’ve made an honest decision. A) I’ve enjoyed the XC racing so much that I’ve decided that will remain my core expertise*. I’ll still road race a bit and try TT (and of course the club runs and events) on the road for fitness and fun. And B) because jnr is loving his own racing so I intend for him to race at the CX kids events where it’s hard for me to leave him alone at his current age then for me to race also, so I made the choice for him to do so. My omnipresence will allow me to help out at the events and give something back to cycling in my “off” season.

    * I still want cat 3 though just to prove I can and out some points back into the club, should the opportunity arise.

    karlwoof – Member

    Back at Tameside for another stab at the 4th cat race tomorrow. Anyone else there for the 2/3/4 or 4th only?

    crazy-legs – Member

    Probably do the 2/3/4 again. Weather permitting – I refuse to race in the rain!

    I’m in again. As things stand I’ll be the only HDR rider present, so it shouldn’t be too hard to work me out this week Crazy Legs 🙂

    Hopefully I’ll manage to say hello to you too this week Karl.

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Subscriber

    Well that was much more fun. Started near the front, drifted to the back over the course of the next 6 laps as it took me ages to get properly warmed up. After that I settled in nicely and just contented myself with drifting around in the back third of the race.

    Once the bunch got rid of some of the chaff, things settled down well. It’s amazing just how much one or two choppers can disrupt an otherwise smooth bunch.

    A break of 2 had got off the front fairly early on and although we were catching them towards the end the bunch then sat up, no-one willing to commit the last efforts to pull them back. I rolled in near the back just content to stay out of trouble. Average speed 24.8mph. Bit slower than last week due to the headwind down the back straight.

    Had a chat with Karl and Jonny just before their race and then stayed to marshal but they can tell you about their race!

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    World Class Warm-up is your friend for a short closed circuit race:

    1) 6 minutes steady gentle riding to get the body going
    2) 8 minutes heart rate ramp at 1 minute intervals finishing with a minute at about Zone 4.5 (i.e., a real race pace).
    3) 6 minute steady with six-second bursts at highest cadence that can be sustained.

    Then jacket off and go to the start. Had plenty of races where the body only felt like it was really going half way through the race. Now I warm up as best I can and attack as early as possible! 😈

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Subscriber

    World Class Warm-up is your friend for a short closed circuit race

    I was marshalling the Youth race then had to get signed on and kitted up!
    It takes me ages now to get properly into racing, the first 6 laps I felt shit. I used to just be able to go from the gun.

    Old age. 🙁

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    Ah yes, sometimes a warm-up isn’t possible. And six laps is pretty good – I’ve gone 30 minutes of a one hr race. If all else fails, try a couple of laps with spinning intervals like a loon – I do just the last section for a couple of laps with 160 rpm bursts. It’s nowhere near a full warm-up, but will kick-start your legs and cardio into action. Others will often just cruise around the circuit with the occasional sprint, but focus does help (a little).

    I also warmed up for the RR on Sunday, but there was a long talk from the Com, made up for by a deneutralised zone. Was still a very hard attack from the line by a team-mate, so I was blocking.

    karlwoof
    Member

    Evening. Race went real good for me. Sat near front and tried to go with any move that looked serious.

    Race stayed together pretty much and no real incidents. Sprinted to 3rd place and 3rd cat license it seems!

    Over the moon to get my 3rd cat license now, time to step it up.

    Enjoyed it again last night. Different dynamic within the race this week, with plenty lads having a dig off the front to test the water a little, with no one committing to a proper attack. Again Karl was mainly up front doing his graft and staying out of bother. This week I was much more aware of my positioning and made a greater effort to move forward at any opportunity. With 2 to go a rider went for it in the home straight and, even though it was a bit early for me, I committed and went with him. We got a gap and just as I was shouting him to dig in, he sat up. Afterwards he said he’d glanced round and thought I was heading the bunch and if he’d known we were away he’d have gone with it. This left me in front, so I just got my head down and went for it. On the final bends I was sat in 6th and managed to stay there to the finish. So that’s two 6th places on the trot and a total of 9 points now. Happy with how things are progressing.
    Managed a chat with Karl beforehand (congrats on both the result and your 3rd Cat licence) and also got to meet Crazy Legs afterwards too. All in all another great evening.

    karlwoof
    Member

    Good to chat with you too. Really looking forward to getting stuck into some more racing now.

    I’ll be there next Tuesday for the 2/3/4 race I think, only 23 more points for 2nd cat

    After my last couple road races im in danger of ending the season on a right sour note.

    We get warned beforehand not to cross the white line, yet people still do it. I’m not talking about drifting over a bit but guys consistently doing it all during the race as their sole method for moving up the bunch. I get why they do it – the left lane can be tightly packed and it takes a fair bit of effort and patience to work your way through this. But it is the same for everyone, it’s easy going on the wrong side of the road and making up lots of ground then barging back in (to an already close group of riders) when a car is coming the other way causing chaos further back. I really wish the commissaires would crack down on it and start DQing the worst offenders.

    Haze
    Member

    3/4 race local to us got neutralised for this, only my first year racing so don’t have a wealth of experience but it’s the only time I’ve heard of it happening.

    Commissaire was said to be well known for being strict.

    Similar story to the race I’ve done this year then, it is a pisstake and people should be reprimanded.

    Rockape63
    Member

    The hotel gym supervisor came over and watched me push through one of 7 4min >FTP intervals on Sunday and told me he’d never seen a holidaymaker sweat from there forearms and legs like I was

    Reminds me of my workouts on the Gym bikes in the ‘air conditioned’ gym at my Dom Rep Hotel a couple of years ago. I counted 1 drop of sweat per sec falling off my face for whole session after I’d warmed up. I was amazed!

    mrblobby
    Member

    Is it time for a season review thread yet?

    A hard won 7th at Tameside on Tuesday night has seen me reach the dizzy heights of 3rd Cat! This unexpected occurrence has far exceeded my wildest dreams, having been lapped-out in my first race. However my 4 subsequent attempts have seen me in the points each time (9th, 6th, 6th & 7th), so after only 5 races I’m now in proper arse-kicking territory next season. I’m still undecided as to whether this situation is a good thing or not…

    shedbrewed
    Member

    Good to read people’s growth and experiences.
    Been a mixed season so far for me; got a pb on the 10 and 25 mile TT distances, but other than that I’ve been slower this year. Have been feeling rather jaded with racing and think the TT bike will stay away next year. I’m hoping to get an entry in the Welsh 50TT in September but my time wasn’t great so not sure if I’ll make the cut. Bought a full-sus bike to cheer myself up. Working so far. Might even think about racing XC.
    Still, only a couple of weeks til the Welsh League CX starts and I can get muddy and burned out.

    karlwoof
    Member

    Sanity assassin, I think by moving upto 3rd cat we are just going to find it a whole lot harder next season! I feel quite tired after all the racing of late, didn’t have a great winter and felt I was always chasing the form and didn’t really have a good foundation for it all. Going to approach this winter in a different manner, get the miles in from November by having a break earlier on and only racing CX for fun, then go from the gun in the March races. Might try my hand at track too, you know, become the complete cyclist, ha!

    karlwoof
    Member

    So as the season comes to an end, what are you plans? Any last minute races or chasing points before end of November?

    Premier Icon TiRed
    Subscriber

    Season end? I’m just started 😉

    A few vets races lined up at Cyclopark, plus three Surrey League E123 Road races and an ERRL road race. Then some points grabbers in November (I won’t be points grabbing!) before the Imperial Winter Series in December.

    Will add a bit of Central League Cyclocross and some Gorricks subject to wrist strength.

    One more road race planned, just waiting to see if I get an entry, not sure if I will or in fact want one as it’s a bit of a nemesis course for me!! Will do the last SXC race if I don’t get in…maybe… Suffering with new shifts and a bit of knee pain too! Woe is me 😥 😆

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    Anyone race on Michi Pro4 Service course 23? I’m just wondering if they might be an upgrade on the pr04 endurance 25’s i use all year round.

    karlwoof
    Member

    Haha well I should have said the road season! Looking forward to messing around at some NDCXL races myself and some hill climbs, then get some decent winter miles in, strangely looking forward to riding in the cold again!

    mrblobby
    Member

    Back from holiday to find a £10 cheque in the post for 2nd place vet in a recent open TT. First time I’ve EVER won any cold hard cash 8) Ok, pretty modest achievement really but still pleased with that and a nice way to finish my first proper-ish season of time trialling (it’s all been a bit stop start.) With that and a couple of club trophies, I think I may actually be becoming a credible tester!

    strangely looking forward to riding in the cold again!

    Most definitely NOT the case here!

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    Nice one MrBlobby!

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