Monday, August 1st
Well, I spent my rest day sun bathing, swimming, canoeing, and otherwise enjoying Calgary summer at it's finest.
Maybe not the best way to get fired up for what was sure to be a high-paced assault by the omnium contenders...
I did sleep mostly unimpeded by my cold which has now taken a thick phlegmy form (thx for sharing, I know!)
Had a nice omelette prepared by Bev, and off we went - yes the whole family came along finally. A bit stressful at first but I am so glad they came.
Watched the end of the U17 race and then had about 25 minutes of open course to warm up on, so I didn't really need the trainer afterall.
Did about 7 or 8 laps, alternating some low, med, and high intensity.
Felt good, but not exactly peppy. Maybe on account of not having a drop of coffee this morning, which is probably the first time in a year that I can say that!
Wrapped up my warm up when they said 5 minutes left, positioned perfectly at the left-center front, next to the top 2 in the omnium, Jordan B and Anthony Killick. The start went off unexpectedly without a count down, and by the time I got my right foot clipped in those guys were into the first corner, and I was already about 10th.
The pace was as fast as I expected, but I was feeling alright. I sensed we were dropping guys as I soon would see them as we passed them.
I kept the leaders in sight, but due to the aggressive nature of those corners, there wasn't much one could do to advance. Just had to chip away at it. Every lap or two try to gain a position, either on the long sprint, or the small climb right after. Then hold your line as guys converge into one or two lines.
I did not once consider contesting a prime for this race as I just wasn't feeling aggressive enough to bolt ahead from far out.
I did find my rhythm in the 2nd half of the 20-lap circuit though. Was going into the last turn with more speed and holding a line better suited to gain some draft from someone ahead of me killing themselves to catch the wheel in front.
By the last few laps I had gained some ground, but I knew going in that one cannot surpass that many people after the final turn. You could maybe pass one or two, and hopefully not get passed by any. So to win it, you'd have to be top 3 going into the turn, and with lots of gas in the tank, as it was a 200m dash to the line with a headwind today!
Needless to say, I was not in that top 3, but I wasn't too far off, maybe 10th.
I passed one right in the turn, and had my eye on another couple guys in front of me. Caught one of them just as Callum (C4) passed me; same way Mike passed my last year in this race! Arg! Got to find a way to explode better for those final sprints!!
Ended up 9th out of 40 on the start list. Not too disappointed with that actually. Because of this being the Provincial Crit, 9th actually earned me a whopping 2 more upgrade points!
Speaking of exploding sprints, the cat 4 race was won by my other former Bici brother, Brent Topilko. Man he came out of nowhere and passed Ferenc well before the line.
Anyway, it was a nice day, nice crowds, no crashes in cat 5, and a got me some points.
Feeling stoked for JayLap next weekend! Hopefully my health holds up!!
Some pics on smugmug: 1, 2, 3, 4