Monday, January 2, 2012
New years week
Really amazing couple of days to transition between 2011 and 2012. Hectic for sure, but also a really nice travel experience, fantastic racing, and lovely company with my wife and me getting a weekend away from the kiddo to celebrate our anniversary.
Racing-wise, there's a lot too say but I'll try and keep it to the business:
Wednesday night in KC- Got in a group with Steve Tilford and Brady Kappius after the first lap. Felt very good but regretted the last minute choice of putting a file tread in the rear, as I found myself slipping out in some of the corners. Great race with Brady, we were back and forth the whole race and it came down to the last stretch where he jumped the barriers and I ran. I then missed a pedal and he got a gap which he held to the line. I'll take 3rd to Brady and Tilford and ended up with a great USAC point value for that race.
Day 1 @New Years Resolution- drew a starting spot almost dead last. Fought hard and ended up riding around 12th-13th for most of the race but faded towards the end. With 2-to-go I came through the start/finish and got pulled unexpectedly with the guy who ended up 15th, so I finished 16th. I was surprised and disappointed to get pulled when I did, but I rode a clean race despite struggling with the high-end fitness. So, I let it go and planned for day-2.
Day 2- I was stoked. I had a great NYE/annivesary with my wife in downtown chicago and managed to get to bed at a reasonable hour. I woke up feeling good, drew another almost dead-last starting spot, but was ready-to-go. Pretty much all went according to plan. I tried working together with a bunch of the guys riding around me, but it is really hard when the wind is so destructive and the mud, so sucking. Anyway, with 3-to-go, I figured it was our last lap. I worked my way up and came across the line around 13th, only to not get pulled like I expected. So we headed back out for another lap, knowing full well that Trebon and Powers would be lapping us. The guys finishing 13th-17th managed to last until about .25 of the lap, at which point we were summiting mini-Mt Krumpit part 2 and the pain-train was beginning the ascent. I decided to not get in their way prior to the sand pits so pulled over. The guys I was with didn't take the same approach, so I was gapped badly and ended up getting pulled at 16th position, but was scored as 17th. Considering my wife was pitting for me (so I wanted to do her proud) and I felt so good and thought I planned well, I was pretty bummed with the result. But, there isn't much I can do.
At this point I'm having a hard time finding the motivation to summon much enthusiasm for this last week. Sometimes bike racing is just plain frustrating and there isn't anything you can do about it. Sometimes you try and do the right thing, whether it is be nice or get out of the way, and you end up getting ignored, run-over, or just plain taken advantage of. But that isn't just bike racing. That's pretty much life.
I guess the drain on my motivation has to do with what looked like a good plan on paper, not feeling as good in reality. My wife and I planned our anniversary in Chicago around the UCI chicago race. I was then going to spend the next week doing some experiments in my old bosses lab at Notre Dame, and as such, would be away for an additional week. South Bend is currently getting pummeled with snow, so I'm stuck in Chicago alone because my wife flew home today. All I can think about is getting home. Racing next weekend seems like a joke compared to getting home.