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CapeRoadie

Question for Bartali, KRE, hw or anybody else who races

My last race of the season is next Monday at 9 a.m. I've read all the books and trained other athletes for years, but I'm still curious as to how you would advise me to taper in the week before the race. I rode hard last Thursday night for 25 miles, rode a moderate Saturday morning with 4-5 sprints for 40 miles. Did an moderate-hard 60-miler on Sunday morning and did about 20 easy at lunch yesterday.

Today I do the usual 1-hour weightlifting session (which will be lighter since it's a race week).

The question is, what do I do the rest of the week?

The plan is to take tomorrow off, go easy Thursday night for 20, off Friday, and then a few hill repeats Saturday and easy spin Sunday to keep the legs open.

Advice?
kellyrocheearly

I would ride thursday and friday with the hill repeats on one of those days and the other day easy spinning the legs and take Saturday off the bike. Then do an easy 90mins spinning the day before the race with a couple of sprints and a couple of 2-3 min efforts just to wake up the engine before race day.
But i'm sure everybody has different ways of doing it, its just finding out what makes you go best on race day and can be trial and error until you hit the magic formula that works for you.
CapeRoadie

kellyrocheearly wrote:
I would ride thursday and friday with the hill repeats on one of those days and the other day easy spinning the legs and take Saturday off the bike. Then do an easy 90mins spinning the day before the race with a couple of sprints and a couple of 2-3 min efforts just to wake up the engine before race day.
But i'm sure everybody has different ways of doing it, its just finding out what makes you go best on race day and can be trial and error until you hit the magic formula that works for you.


That sounds good, thanks. Haven't quite done it that way before.

Anybody else? TT? Bartali? hw? Anybody?
CapeRoadie

Well, the race is over and I had a great ride. Finished 8th out of 65 riders in my group, on wet roads with several crashes in all races, including one in mine. Here are some notes from the race diary:

We raced around the island of Jamestown, just west of Newport, Rhode Island, the sailing capitol of the east coast of the U.S. It was a 20-mile course, with several climbs, but nothing too long or too steep. About 30 minutes before the start, roads were dry, and then a sudden 5-minute downpour made everything stay wet for the rest of the race, which was foggy and misty.

We started with a short downhill and gradual 3-mile climb up the east side of the island with a northeast wind. I stayed left to draft and block the wind coming from my right. There was a "yellow-line rule", which is common here, since traffic passes on the left side of the center highway (yellow) line and if you cross it or get pushed across it you may come face to face with a 5000-lb. vehicle. We rode in a tight peloton of 65 nervous Category 5 riders all aged 40-49.

One long ascent (okay, long for me) was followed by gently rolling hills to the very north end of the island, where the roads went from smooth to really rough. There were potholes everywhere and loose gravel and bottles went flying. I managed to reach down and hold mine in my hand so it wouldn't pop out. One of my teammates rode over a bottle and nearly crashed into a signpost, but recovered and rode off the side of the road. He never latched back on to the draft.

There wasn't enough police support at the top (north) end of the island through the gravelly, rough section, and as we made a sharp right turn through the woods, a car nearly collided with another teammate as the driver tried to push his way through the moving (and turning) peloton. Crazy! It was like riding through the Trench of Arenberg, only much narrower with overhanging trees, and with cars wildly crossing the race course intersections!

I put into an easier gear and spun, holding onto my bottle. I had ridden the course the day before and was worried about this section since I lost my water bottle over the rough surface. It was less than a half-mile of this, but a lot of riders got dropped there. I stayed near the front, in about 10th or 12th position. As we came out of the forest of hell, we hit a long downhill now heading south on the west side of the island, and the pack was not going to rush it. Too slow, I thought. I looked down at my Polar which read 26 mph, and I had ridden it at 35 mph the day before. Should I lead it and see who comes with me?

I did. I hit 40 mph and only a few guys came with me. I dropped back to see who they were. The night before I was reading a book on race tactics by a former U.S. national champ named Prehn (great book) who said it would be a good idea to size up the competition. What did he call it? "Reading the race", I think. Worked like a charm. Those were the guys who ended up finishing at the top. I only led that downhill stretch for about 45 seconds, but it was worth it. It felt good to stretch out the legs a bit, and my heavier weight (currently 215) helped too. Look at that, the fat bastard can descend!

That surge broke the group in half, as it turned out, but the front group slowed again with me in the back drafting, and the second group caught us again at the start of the next climb. We had several more short climbs and descents heading south and then we headed southwest past a long beach toward a state park where it got very windy and the roads narrow. The pack was tight. The wind coming off the water was ferocious, and the course took us around the southern tip of the island around an old lighthouse in a 300-degree turn heading north again, right at the water's edge. I almost wiped out and went over the wooden rail fence at the edge of the water. I couldn't have gone any faster around that turn and still held it, what with the wind and rain and my bladed spokes acting as a sail. I held on. I was still back in a bout 8-10th position.

Now the pace was getting quicker. We had about 5 miles to go back over some gently rolling hills, and we were now passing the slower riders who were still headed toward the lighthouse, which was an out-and-back course on the southwest of the island. One of the riders heading toward us forgot the yellow-line rule and we all barked at him to move over. Thankfully he did or we would have had an amazing crash! As we approached the one-mile to go mark, I was boxed in. There was a long downhill just before the beach and I wanted to gather up speed going into the final climb before a quick downhill finish.

The last climb was the steepest and the longest. I had practiced it the day before and planned on going into it at about 28-30 mph. But I was boxed in! We weren't going over 25 mph and I couldn't find a line through. One of my teammates found a line on the right and I followed. As we passed the beach we made a sharp right to ascend the last hill, and then I saw a rider just off to my left who wobbled, and CRASH! He swept left and took out several riders. My teammate had swung tooo far left to avoid it and ended up (I was told later) riding over the fallen riders (pretty ballsy for a Cat 5 racer, I thought). I never saw the rest of it. The cries and shouting were quickly fading into the background behind me. "Always take the inside of a corner when it's wet...", I had also read the night before, "...since a crash will sweep to the outside like dominoes". And so it was. "Good book", I thought again.

I didn't have the speed I wanted going into that hill, and I had slowed just enough to miss the jump of the few riders, all of them skinnier than me (the bastards!), in front of me! I was gapped! I'm still not sure what gear I was pedaling, but I made it up that hill and was going all out. But I never caught that group. My teammate caught me at the top of the climb and just passed me. I held onto his wheel at the summit and drafted him, knowing I could beat him on any downhill.

But this was different. I was going to make my move around the corner onto the downhill but my wheels wobbled, and--I have no idea how I managed to keep the bike upright around that turn! He was 2-3 bike lengths in front of me around the corner and it was a very slick, fast but restrained descent to the finish. I counted the finishers in front of me, seven. If only it had been dry! If only I had some speed into that last turn before the final climb! If only my wheels grabbed the road! If only.

Ah, the many thoughts one has AFTER the race is over. The sun came out moments after I crossed the finish line. My wife and kids were cheering and ringing their cowbells, and I was happy. This was the first time in a road race (i.e., a race with hills) that I had finished at the front of the pack. The survivors of the crash came in soon after, and were all shaking their heads. Apparently the first guy to go down had his bike's top tube broken in half in the crash. I felt lucky. And happy to have gotten through unscathed (touch wood, touch wood).

We watched the women's and pro races finishing up, saw a very unfortunate crash involving stragglers from the women's race getting caught by a men's master's race bunch sprint finish. We could see that one coming from a mile away. The Jamestown race organizers will get a lot of complaints this year about poor race management and serious safety issues. It's such a beautiful course, even in the rain, with seascape and farms and beautiful homes and scenic views replete with a view of the Newport Bridge, an historic lighthouse and panoramas of Newport Harbor. Hopefully next year it will be a safer course. And next year I'll be leading into that final climb if it kills me. Well, almost kills me.
Ralphnorman

Sounds like you had fun. Well done as well..... thumright
kellyrocheearly

Well done Cape!! Great way to end the season.
cardinal guzman

Thanks for a great read Cape!

and well done! Next year you'll be leading a break up that hill, after powering away on the (traffic safety improved) Arenburg. Smile
Slapshot

fantastic read Cape!!! well done!!!
cyclingtv

+1.. sounds like you had a great ride..
berck

Great job Cape. Just reading it reminds me why I don't have any desire to race. I have no desire to be helped to the ground by others. Wink
thunderthighs

your vague hard to say.. taper is intensity with lots of recovery....

e.g. did u motor pace this year..
did you do lots of 40km tt

i suggest .10 day taper that means 4 days on 6 rest.. adn on never hitting below 85% intensity.. stay away from intervals adn big ring grinds for a while..

2 hours eah day 42x18 ... keep it flat...

thats my way...aftr a long season..
CapeRoadie

thunderthighs wrote:
your vague hard to say.. taper is intensity with lots of recovery....

e.g. did u motor pace this year..
did you do lots of 40km tt

i suggest .10 day taper that means 4 days on 6 rest.. adn on never hitting below 85% intensity.. stay away from intervals adn big ring grinds for a while..

2 hours eah day 42x18 ... keep it flat...

thats my way...aftr a long season..


Are you saying that's what you would do AFTER the season is over?

What do you recommend for the off season, TT?

I'm taking up cyclocross to ward off the winter blahs this year. Just signed up for a race November 11.
kellyrocheearly

thunderthighs wrote:
your vague hard to say.. taper is intensity with lots of recovery....

e.g. did u motor pace this year..
did you do lots of 40km tt

i suggest .10 day taper that means 4 days on 6 rest.. adn on never hitting below 85% intensity.. stay away from intervals adn big ring grinds for a while..

2 hours eah day 42x18 ... keep it flat...

thats my way...aftr a long season..


thats pretty much what i've always done end of september/early october. Love those rides spinning along in nice autumn weather
Bartali

Well done Cape! Good ride my friend!
CapeRoadie

Thanks for the encouragement, everybody. Here are some pics:

CapeRoadie

Ralphnorman

which one are you CR?
CapeRoadie

Not in either of those groups. I have to get my pictures on-line before I can post those. Maybe this weekend.
Ralphnorman

looking forward to it...why can i only see 1 spectator? is that the sum interest in your part of the world in bike racing?
Bartali

Cape - If you had time to take photo's you weren't riding hard enough Wink
CapeRoadie

You two are very funny.
JohnD

Great read & great pics Cape! Smile
CapeRoadie

Thanks, man. The end of a very long season.
thunderthighs

yes thats what iam saying, those pic are beautiful.. nice opart of teh country

iam a colorado fan.. the place in the USA...

ciao
bbnaz

good onya cape. looking forward to see you in the pictures.
sheeponabike

Good stuff cape - waiting for the pics now.
I can't believe there are any inclines at all there - I mean, it looks so FLAT!
CapeRoadie

sheeponabike wrote:
Good stuff cape - waiting for the pics now.
I can't believe there are any inclines at all there - I mean, it looks so FLAT!


The whole region (New England) was cut by glaciers and the Appalachian mountain range isn't too far away. Right at the water's edge is flat, though.
kellyrocheearly

CapeRoadie wrote:
sheeponabike wrote:
Good stuff cape - waiting for the pics now.
I can't believe there are any inclines at all there - I mean, it looks so FLAT!


The whole region (New England) was cut by glaciers and the Appalachian mountain range isn't too far away. Right at the water's edge is flat, though.


where i am just North of Boston its all up, down, up, down, up, down, up, down and then a few short steep ones thrown in
CapeRoadie

thunderthighs wrote:
yes thats what iam saying, those pic are beautiful.. nice opart of teh country

iam a colorado fan.. the place in the USA...

ciao


Finally I found this. Okay, my man, I'm going to try the off season your way. I need a coach. What do you charge, TT?

Come visit us on Cape Cod in the sumer. Colorado is great (I'll still take San Francisco) but there's no ocean.
Ralphnorman

try a bit of cyclo x cape Wink great excuse to get muddy and see the countryside Rolling Eyes Wink
CapeRoadie

Ralphnorman wrote:
try a bit of cyclo x cape Wink great excuse to get muddy and see the countryside Rolling Eyes Wink


Good advice. I have my first sanctioned race this Sunday.
kellyrocheearly

so how did the first Cross race go Cape?
CapeRoadie

kellyrocheearly wrote:
so how did the first Cross race go Cape?


I blew out the bead on my front tire and neutral support fixed me up with a really nice Zipp carbon tubular. But for one lap the tire kept hitting the brake pad--really annoying and it felt like it was a lot of extra work! I crashed 2X negotiating tight turns on off-cambre downhills, but wasn't injured. I finished in the middle of the pack--not sure of my exact placing yet. have to check BikeReg soon. I loved it. A lot harder than road racing and crits--I was basically completely out of breath for 45 minutes straight! My arms and ass and hands were really sore as well. But I'm hooked. It was fun. Cross riders are a different breed of people altogether.
kellyrocheearly

CapeRoadie wrote:
kellyrocheearly wrote:
so how did the first Cross race go Cape?


I blew out the bead on my front tire and neutral support fixed me up with a really nice Zipp carbon tubular. But for one lap the tire kept hitting the brake pad--really annoying and it felt like it was a lot of extra work! I crashed 2X negotiating tight turns on off-cambre downhills, but wasn't injured. I finished in the middle of the pack--not sure of my exact placing yet. have to check BikeReg soon. I loved it. A lot harder than road racing and crits--I was basically completely out of breath for 45 minutes straight! My arms and ass and hands were really sore as well. But I'm hooked. It was fun. Cross riders are a different breed of people altogether.


sounds like you enjoyed it alright, pity about the puncture. So when you doing another one?
thunderthighs

coaching is a field i hate, becuz i believe its all about the athlete not me.

i can give u some ideas, i gotta be there..

lwhen ben johnson made his second comeback, i was there with him, i wa sinvited to the giocchio del giuventu..youth games..

the women killed this scorpio, damn women!!!!

ciao
CapeRoadie

kellyrocheearly wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:
kellyrocheearly wrote:
so how did the first Cross race go Cape?


I blew out the bead on my front tire and neutral support fixed me up with a really nice Zipp carbon tubular. But for one lap the tire kept hitting the brake pad--really annoying and it felt like it was a lot of extra work! I crashed 2X negotiating tight turns on off-cambre downhills, but wasn't injured. I finished in the middle of the pack--not sure of my exact placing yet. have to check BikeReg soon. I loved it. A lot harder than road racing and crits--I was basically completely out of breath for 45 minutes straight! My arms and ass and hands were really sore as well. But I'm hooked. It was fun. Cross riders are a different breed of people altogether.


sounds like you enjoyed it alright, pity about the puncture. So when you doing another one?


The neutral support guy named "Merlin" (his real name--no relation) gave me a new tire, no charge, after the race. Cool guy! A "pay it forward" sort of thing. Now I have to do something nice.

Next race may be Wrentham on Dec 2. We'll see.
CapeRoadie

thunderthighs wrote:
coaching is a field i hate, becuz i believe its all about the athlete not me.

i can give u some ideas, i gotta be there..

lwhen ben johnson made his second comeback, i was there with him, i wa sinvited to the giocchio del giuventu..youth games..

the women killed this scorpio, damn women!!!!

ciao


So what does it cost to get you here?
mr shifter

CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
yes thats what iam saying, those pic are beautiful.. nice opart of teh country

iam a colorado fan.. the place in the USA...

ciao




Come visit us on Cape Cod in the sumer.  Colorado is great (I'll still take San Francisco) but there's no ocean.


Sorry but I can't resist this one!!!!!

At the time you wrote this I was in San Francisco and watched the sun go down at Pacific Beach and also at Santa Monica and further south at Imperial Beach with temperatures of 91/86/83/81/81.
Oh a couple of misty/low cloud days in S.F. and it poured with rain throughout a football match in Berkeley.
The TV weather channel showed some horendous weather in your part and thro the North East and I felt very lucky.
Yes me and my walking stick do still get around!!!!
So how did you make out in that weather?????
CapeRoadie

mr shifter wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
yes thats what iam saying, those pic are beautiful.. nice opart of teh country

iam a colorado fan.. the place in the USA...

ciao




Come visit us on Cape Cod in the sumer.  Colorado is great (I'll still take San Francisco) but there's no ocean.


Sorry but I can't resist this one!!!!!

At the time you wrote this I was in San Francisco and watched the sun go down at Pacific Beach and also at Santa Monica and further south at Imperial Beach with temperatures of 91/86/83/81/81.
Oh a couple of misty/low cloud days in S.F. and it poured with rain throughout a football match in Berkeley.
The TV weather channel showed some horendous weather in your part and thro the North East and I felt very lucky.
Yes me and my walking stick do still get around!!!!
So how did you make out in that weather?????


Sorry, mr shifter, never saw this!  I rode Wrentham and it was sooooo cooooooooold I thought my arse would freeze.  I overdressed, and got way too hot.  Lesson learned.  Worst race I ever rode.
mr shifter

CapeRoadie wrote:
mr shifter wrote:

Sorry but I can't resist this one!!!!!

At the time you wrote this I was in San Francisco and watched the sun go down at Pacific Beach and also at Santa Monica and further south at Imperial Beach with temperatures of 91/86/83/81/81.
Oh a couple of misty/low cloud days in S.F. and it poured with rain throughout a football match in Berkeley.
The TV weather channel showed some horrendous weather in your part and thro the North East and I felt very lucky.

So how did you make out in that weather?????


Sorry, mr shifter, never saw this!  I rode Wrentham and it was sooooo cooooooooold I thought my arse would freeze.  I overdressed, and got way too hot.  Lesson learned.  Worst race I ever rode.


Thanks for tidying that one.

That about closes this Dr Fuentes Consulting Room for 2007 !!!!!

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