Friday, June 17, 2011

Hellyer Get Ready for Summer #5: June 11, 2011

In a fit of ambition to upgrade I decided to enter the cat 4/5 field instead of the cat 3/4 field. At GRFS #4 there were 19 4/5's but on MY race day there ended up being only seven of us. Since that field is less than ten, no upgrade points were up for grabs. But once racing had started and I knew the numbers, it was too late. Fizzle.

Kieren: Racers line up beside each other based on a random number draw, the motorcycle goes by and everyone sprints to get on the motor. After three laps of pacing the motor pulls off and it's a two lap free for all. Or something like that. Maybe it's a 1K free for all? Each heat only has six or seven riders (I know Ted is going to read this and pound himself on the head that I could have such a vague handle on the technicalities of this race but, whatever, go with the flow dude.). Since there were only seven of us there was a heat of 4 and a heat of 3. I ended up in the second heat of 3. The first two riders advance to the final. I gave a 87% effort on my sprint and got pipped for the heat win on the line but securing second was all I wanted. I turned lap cards for other races for awhile until my Kieren final. I was second wheel until the motor pulled off then a couple passed uptrack. In the sprint I could see my way over the top and past to take the sprint and, yay, my legs followed my eyes. Win!

Snowball: The winner on each lap gets points. On the first lap, 1 point, second lap, 2 points, etc. so the last lap 15 is worth 15 points. I took laps 3 and 4 but then Dexter snuck off the front. No one wanted to reel him in and, in all honesty, I think some beginners (I refuse to call them n00bs) got a little confused about the part where there was a race going on. We finally got him back with four or five to go. I took at least three of the last four sprints but it wasn't enough and I was 2nd.

Miss-n-out. I'd like to have this race back. The last place person on each lap gets pulled then the last three sprint it out for 1,2 and 3rd. With four to go I TWICE had my front wheel swept WHILE I WAS IN THE SPRINTER'S LANE. I went into bitchy whiny mode and started yelling at the two rule breakers. The officials pulled me and I proceded to let them know exactly how I felt that they weren't enforcing any delegations for dangerous riders (all calmly and sweetly of course). I'm pretty mellow except when it comes to dangerous riding and then I get a little stupid and self important (I like to think of it as self preservation). I calmed down a bit and had a good talk with the official. I completely disagree with him but he said if I wasn't getting physically pushed into the apron it's my fault for "being intimidated." (Again, he says intimidated, I say safe).

Points (15 lap points every 5 laps): Knowing that my miss and out failure probably lost me the omnium I took out my frustration on the first two sprints, winning them both. I sealed the win with a 3rd on the last sprint. Maybe the officials were mad at me since they somehow scored a three way tie on the first sprint. No matter, it didn't really change the overall results.

So a mixture of emotions to take home from this one. Losing the omnium by one point (out of 22) kind of sucked. And turning into a whining baby in the miss and out wasn't anything to be proud of (though I did make it up to the two guys I yelled at: that's the nice thing about the track is that the shit that happens in the race usually doesn't make it into the pits; at the cat 3/4 level anyway...). I was happy to be able to win track events in each year I've been on the track now. And bringing home a red ribbon always makes the homefront take notice. But in hindsight, I really wish I'd done the 3/4 race. I think I had good enough legs to have been competitive and forth place in that race would have netted more upgrade points than the zero I got in my race. Oh well. More positives than negatives overall.

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