Monday, June 09, 2008

Looking good is important while suffering...

Any time you show up to Afton for a race, you better be ready to climb. Luckily the whole VeloRochester crew was looking really good in our new team kits while we suffered!
The MNSCS #2, Afton Avalanche, was a 24 mile bruiser of a course w/ 5000-6000 feet of climbing thrown in, and the median finishing time for the experts was over 2 hours and 40 minutes....good preparation for Mt. Snow.
The race started out up a small-ish hill (but big enough) to allow for "natural" selection. The Velo crew hit it hard of the start.
I got the hole shoot at the top of the first hill, and just kept it a at a good hard pace. To my surprise I was gapping the rest of the field. I wasn't trying to attack, as I knew it would be a long race to try and go solo from the start. However, by the top of Shady Lane (the first of several time each lap you fully climb the hill) I had 20 seconds or so on Ben, and I wasn't under too much pressure so I pushed it on the punchy climbs and technical descending portions of the trail. The gap continued to open and was nearly a minute by the end of the lap. After that, I just set a maintainable climbing pace and rode fast and smooth on the downhills. By the third lap, I had nearly 3 minutes on Ben and Jeff Herrera (who was up from Arizona), but my legs started to get crampy...I HATE that. There was lots of power left in them, but was unable to use it because they were freezing up...darn! I tried a different drink mix for the race and will be going back to my tried and true double top secret formula next time. I rode a pretty slow 4th lap knowing that I had time to spare. In the end, I had a little over 1.5 minutes on Ben. He rode a really strong race and a very strong last lap.
Fisher suffered a flat but hung with he on a typical Afton decent.
Tegan and others provide a great cheering section. If you hear a little voice saying "go, go, go" by the water stand, that was him=) Jen said that he cheered for everyone!
Thanks to Bruce at Skinny Ski for all the pics (except the one of Tegan..that was Jen)

Next up is Buck on Thursday and maybe the WORS Cup on Saturday. I hear the WORS Cup course is a fun one...the only down side would be that I have to start in the second row.


Jay Richards said...

Nice race Brendan. I talked to Don and he said all Pros and Semi-Pros will get call ups at WORS cup xc. Maybe see you there.

samo said...

Great job Brendan!You kicked it up some this year,your flying out there. I guess the title of mountain goat is passed on to you.Are you doing the omnium,or just the xc.Think I might do just the xc since it's early on Sat.
Be blessed!

Anonymous said...

Sweet result. Great to pull away and hold it there. Expect to see that secret recipe appearing here sooner or later. Need to spread the love.

Heath said...

Funny, "natural selection" sort of like age and/or calves! I like Afton start because gap and hill before woods does allow a sort out. Nice race pops. Great pics too. This Saturday will be my first WORS race. Hope to see you at the start line, the more MN in tow the better.

Richard said...

So, did Matt change the colors to match your team helmets?
Great job out there!

Brendan said...

HA! Secret formula...maybe but it is only useful for those w/ cramping issues in hot races.

I requested those team colors from the beginning (my beginning w/ velo roch). The change was enabled by switching clothing suppliers. Yes, it was important that they match the team helmets!