Sunday, March 30, 2014

Cedar Hill Crit 2014

Sunday we raced our favorite local, kind-of-a-big-deal circuit race. It's local, which means we can pre-ride it (and we did a couple times). Getting on a course prior to race day is always good for me. For our Women 1/2/3 race, we had 22 strong ladies on the line--multiple ladies on 6 different teams (Team Belladium, 5; Clarksville Schwinn, 3; Scarlet Fire, 2; Tennessee Women's Cycling Project, 4; Team WE, 3; and Marx and Bedsdorf, 2) and unattached or solo (the remaining 3).

Start line

Team Bd representing at the front of the line

It felt like everything went right during our race. Team Belladium lined up early and in good position, and I maintained my good position throughout (good for me is at the front, I decided). I think I turned around maybe twice or three times (once for sure when the entire Clarksville team came up to the front; I was looking for my teammates to be coming up with them). The rest of the time I was only looking forward--that's the only way to race!

Although there weren't a lot of attacks, there was a lot of action. We had four primes in 11 total laps, and a few different people went for the primes to shake things up a bit. I went with two of the first three but did not make an effort to actually get the prime. I decided to go for the fourth prime and won it; this was about 3 laps from the end. At that point, I had already attacked once (created a small gap but was brought back), so I knew how my legs felt. While I was going for the prime, Jess C and Stephanie C came with me, and we had a small gap that maybe could have stayed away had we committed to it. But I knew what my team's plan was, and I wasn't going to do much work. Jess stayed at the front for too long (because I wouldn't come around and Stephanie didn't), and we got caught after about half a lap (one lap is 1.2 miles). Then it was time for me to sit in.

Stats from Strava

I wanted to get my teammates into the best position possible for the sprint, but with less than half a lap to go, I found myself at the back of the group (my own doing). We'd started to get a lead-out train going, but it was just too early. I did what I could and then backed off and planned my next escape. This was the only time all race I found myself behind the field, and I used that time for a quick recovery before I shot up the hill and around the group on the right. It was too early to start the sprint, but it was the right time to go, so I went. AJ saw me and came along, shouting at me (this was great--I knew she'd seen me and would have a strong sprint to the finish). A few of the other ladies who were on the left side with her picked up the pace then too, and we all sprinted it out for the finish. AJ finished 2nd behind a Cat 1 (so AJ was the first Cat 2!), and I finished 5th. It was about an ideal of a finish as I could have hoped, given how much I felt like I'd done during the race. Kat, Cali, and Shelly were racing with us also, but honestly, because I was toward the front so much, I saw Kat only a couple times (she also did some work and was at the front when I attacked) and Cali (who was next to me in a few places). I knew they were planning their finish (the most important part of the race) and after the race was proud of how well each of them raced and finished.

Cat 1/2/3 podium. AJ finished 2nd, I was 5th.
Mary won, Shera was 3rd, and Sierra was 4th.

2014 Cedar Hill Strava stats: 5/22 Cat 1/2/3, 50:31, 17.6 miles, 20.9 mph, avg 259W, avg 177 HR
2013 Cedar Hill stats: 14/20 Cat 1/2/3/4, 44:09, 15.57 miles, 21.2 mph, avg 182 HR
TBRA Results

The Cat 4s (Kim, Emily, and Alicia) raced today as well. Alicia won off the front (like half a lap off the front!), Emily finished 6th in the field, and Kim finished 15th of 20 (her first race!). I am super proud of these ladies too!

Cat 4 podium: Alicia 1st, Jennifer M. 2nd,
Steph H. 3rd, Megan A. 4th, Emily S. 5th

Emily's finish

Kim's group

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