Sunday’s regional race was a fast, hot and hard race. The course involved a mix of wide climbs, technical climbs and two key twisty descents. I was pleased to see the quality of the field on the start line with, among others, one of the best rider in the country who also races UCI world cups. We were starting with the juniors, which only brings more pain and speed to the experience. The race would not be easy; heat, humidity, fast guys, hard course and on top of that, a very hard race in the legs from Saturday. Nevertheless, it would be an awesome training and experience.
I dissected the whole race by laps (5) and analysed the datas for each key parts of the course where I could lay down the power. I will comment the first two laps as they were the critical parts of the race.
-Climb 1: approximately 2 minutes long and divided in two: a roughly 20 seconds, hard packed wide road leading to the second part of the climb which was a 90 seconds ascending singletrack with twisting sections and a few roots to clear.
-Flat: a wide, flat stretch of hard packed sand which leads in a slightly ascending singletrack. We had to make a 90 degree left turn at the end of the wide road to enter the singletrack.
-Climb 2: around 1 minute long, this climb was right after a technical rocky section. It was muddy, a little slippery and finished off with a wide gravel path where you could regain some speed before entering the wood toward the last climb.
-Climb 3: around 1 minute long as well. This climb was a semi-loose sand climb which lead to another short punchy climb before tackling the final descent.
Here is the analysis.
Final time: 1h17m32s
Normalized Power: 294W
Lap 1: 15m30s
Climb 1 : 1m50s / 385W AP / 857W max
Flat : 2m10s / 327 AP / 717W max
Climb 2 : 1m / 399w AP / 644W max
Climb 3 : 50s / 461W AP / 633W max
First lap involved a start loop to avoid a tight singletrack. The loop lead at the base of Climb 1. Another poor start for me but no biggie here as I was drafting off other riders on the flat and put the hammer down on the climb to enter the wood with a good position. That surge did have its cost with a max wattage of 857W to past other riders and averaging 385W for almost 2 minutes on the climb. I was on the wheels of the leaders but we got droped on the descent and I then stuck with 2 other riders, a junior and an elite. Once on the flat I had to put the hammer down peaking at 717W to catch the junior and the elite who took a little gap on the descent. I could see them at the base of climb 2 and I passed the junior, again, burning some fuel with a peak wattage of 644W and averaging close to 400W for a minute. I could reach the elite rider and draft him on the rolling part of the course leading to climb
3. At the base of climb 3, I just put the hammer down again, averaging 461W for 50
seconds and got rid of both guys, but not for long…
Lap 2: 15m17s
Climb 1: 1m45s 397W AP 924W max PEAK 10s 823W PEAK 20s 707W
Flat: 2m10s 324W AP
Climb 2: 1m05s 355W AP
Climb 3: 59s 415W AP
I started the final descent with a small gap and both guys caught me back at the base of the descent leading to the lap zone. I slowed a little and rode the first singletrack section at tempo pace leading to climb 1, as I knew it would be hell at the bottom of the climb. Got out of the wood first and started the climb at a pretty high pace between 600-650W but the elite rider attacked as he wanted to enter the second part of the climb with a good position. I responded to the attack with a peak wattage of 924W, peak 10 seconds of 823W and peak 20 seconds of 707W. I could keep my position but I entered the second part of the climb in the wood redlining big time. Finished the climb at a good pace nevertheless with an average power of 397W for 1 minute 45 seconds and started the descent. The rest of the race was ridden with the junior getting close to me on descents and me taking gaps on every climbs. It was an awesome race, pretty hard with an interesting tactical game played in the first two laps.
Here are the other laps datas.
Lap 3: 15m43s
Climb 1: 1m49s 373W AP 675W max
Flat: 2m17s 290W AP
Climb 2: 1m07s 352W AP
Climb 3: 55s 404W AP
Lap 4: 15m47s
Climb 1: 1m50s 371W AP
Flat: 2m15s 289W AP
Climb 2: 1m10s 345W AP
Climb 3: 51s 422W AP
Lap 5: 15m11s
Climb 1: 1m54s 349W AP
Flat: 2m19s 289W AP
Climb 2: 1m13s 338W AP
Climb 3: 55s 394W AP
Overall I was pleased with the result (2nd). The training was very good, both for the skills and fitness! Looking forward to my first provincial test next week-end, most likely in muddy conditions, for a change…