I had a rest week leading up to the neocx #5 euclid race this weekend so I was expecting to feel good. The good news is I felt good, but the bad news is I didn't win. But I figured out a few very obvious things I need to work on, and the best part is I wasn't losing that much time at all running with fresh legs. Therefor I am not tempted to run at all.
I put in toe spikes and rode as much I could with momentum then really pushed myself on the runups. Having ok fitness but not much form, I seem to be able to recover if I just push myself but not try to win the race running.
So onto the things that need immediate work. I crossed lines a bunch in the mud to not fall. I didn't ever fall and I dabbed a total of once in the whole race. I probably need to take a little bit more risk on flat, tight turns and just fly through the rut instead of gently crossing over it safely.
This slow crossing of the ruts lead to a difficult acceleration at a very low cadence. Note the effort and "heel scrape" needed in this picture. I was nearly falling off the back of my saddle trying to restart in a few sections. This would make sense since the lowest cadence for intervals I have ever done is probably 85 rpm. Then, once I could going again I would settle into my usual 95 or so rpm. In a true muddy situation (this race was more wet than muddy) I would probably need to drop it down a cog to maintain traction and really propel myself forward. I also got lazy once the front group of three got away. Zak Dieringer was slinging to his quote "best race ever" when he noticed I instantly put ten seconds into him once I saw him. I told him yes, I was riding a comfortable tempo trying to not mistakes then once I saw the need to put in a real dig, I did so.
Boring real race report: Got the actual holeshot. Front group got away in said "grinding the gear" sections on the second lap. Kind of broke some spirit when it started raining again. Stayed steady and Brett Davis yelled at me to stay on it since one of the front three would have a mechanical. As if he heard it, JawnP broke his chain when he finally got a gap. Watched him take off leg warmers so he could run to the pit. Laughed hysterically. Rode into 3rd then almost got caught by said JawnP after he got his pit bike. I guess it was pretty spread out even though it was only 50 minutes. So yeah, 3rd place woohoo (sarcasm in place for last sentence)