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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Mansfield Ontario Cup #1 Pre Race.

This upcoming weekend will be the first race of the Ontario Cup race series. As per the last decade, the opening race will be held at the Mansfield Outdoor Center just north of Orangeville.

Mansfield is non technical, fast, and relatively flat. There is only one significant hill near the start/finish area that will hurt on the 4th and 5th laps. At this point in my racing 'career' the technical nature of a course hardly scares me. While I wouldn't consider myself a superb bike handler, there really isn't anything I haven't seen before. The most difficult part of this race will be the pace.

This will be my first race in Pro/Elite.

I remember being 16 years old and racing the beginner categories being awestruck at the pace of these guys, and thinking that they must be genetic freaks, and that It would be impossible for me to ever reach that level. Well now im there. Although, my variety of Pro/Elite is of the slower, barely hanging on variety.

Since this is the first race, I am interested to see if the dynamic differs from Senior Expert which I raced last year. My target goal for the race is to finish within 12% of the winners time. This would put me roughly midfield.

My race weekend starts Friday, with a pre-ride where Ill probably ride 2-3 laps, maybe one of them at race pace, the other two being used to practice lines. Saturday Ill be working at the shop, but will start consuming an electrolyte based drink throughout the day. Dinner on Saturday will be pizza. Sodium and carbs mmmm.

Sunday Ill be up at 9:30, throw down some Oatmeal, and maybe munch on a bagel or something on the car ride up. Ill likely have an XL coffee as well as sipping some Eload. Ill take a few pictures of the 11:30 race, cheer on my friends, and then start my warm up at 12:45. Ill most likely do a 15 min tempo ride with a few short intervals to get my legs primed. Then ill line up.

I anticipate three caffeine double latte powergels. Likely on laps 1, 2 and 3. As well as three 500ml bottles with gatorade supplemented with eload caps and some added salt.

These are my three main goals for the race:

1- Nutrition. Make bottle consumption priority, even if it means letting go of the train of riders.

2- Pacing. Dont start hard out of the gate. Its a 5 lap race. No need to burn matches in the early stages.

3- Ride smart and fluidly. Tons of energy is wasted when singletrack technique gets sloppy.

The rest is up to my heart, lungs and legs. Ive trained better than the past, Ive logged more mileage at this point than ever before. My top end power has definitely come back in the last 2 weeks (see last post).

Lets get this show on the road!

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