Not much to say about this one. I raced in the 35+ Cat 3/4 making this my first "Cat 3" race since 1998. It was a good confidence builder to be able to hang in without ever really getting into any distress. There were a few moments of "asses and legs" but it wasn't the kind where guys are coming around you and you're thinking, "uh oh." The course is fun and looks hilly on the profile but I found the climbs to not be much of a factor. That said, team tactics (and another team's complete LACK of tactics) allowed four or five guys to use the bigger hill to slip off the front leaving the pack sprinting for crumbs.
Jeff Miller's report told me exactly what to do. He sprinted for the last corner, held on and managed second. I saw the way clear to do that but the small pack was spread across the road and I hadn't been bold enough to move up on the descent. One guy did sprint forward to take the last turn (and won the field sprint) but then there was a compression through the corner and I didn't risk it. I cruised up the left side of the road and had PLENTY of spurt in the legs but was boxed in and had to be content with watching four or five guys duke it out while I tried to bulldoze the fading rider in front of me out of the way (mentally, of course). I ended up 10th overall and was the 2nd Cat 4. So a good time, a fast-ish race and a great confidence builder. And, as it turns out, that's my second best result in a Cat 3 race in California.
One big take away from this race is that I've become used to riders on the track riding straight. I must have had to brake to keep from getting my front wheel swept 100 times. I suppose that's my own fault for being such a gutter rider and for not being a little more aggressive, perhaps.
Somehow I always end up showing up to races when Steve Anderson is snapping away. I found him afterwards and said "hey" He hadn't seen me in the race and wondered if he'd caught me. I guess he did!