Saturday, March 29, 2008

EV Spring Series - Snake Hill - 8th C group

Escape Velocity Spring Series - Snake Hill course (new this year.) managed an 8th.

This course is similar to the Armstrong Road RR course. In fact it climbs the same hill (about 90m of elevation) from a different side and uses the same descent. But it plays out differently. Armstrong does the clime in 3 short climbs with some flattish bits in between. Snake does it as one steep climb.

Armstrong has gives you about 2km to get your breath back after the descent before starting the climb. Snake gives you over 7km to do the same.

The climb itself was being done in under 2:00 by the stronger riders. I wanted to keep it over 2:00. So always tried to be at the front at the bottom and then set a pace that would get me to the top just back of the leaders. Close enough, with enough other riders, to be able to bridge back. Even if it took 3-4km after we got through the descent.

This left enough in the legs so that on the last climb I could attempt to stay towards the front. This worked reasonably well, managed to stay within site of the first two groups (4 and 3 riders respectively). And had two other people to work with, around to the finish. We couldn't bridge up to either group, but neither where we caught by anyone else.

So a better result than Armstrong, where I was minutes behind the lead group (2nd or 3rd chase group back....) The difference was the harder hill. Longer hills are better for me (although at 2 minutes, still not long enough...) and with a longer course to work back. The bridging back was hard, but at (typically) 250-300 avg. watts not enough to be to worried about. Especially as long as I had 2-3 other riders to work with.


Mark said...

Bryan was in the race as well and I asked for his climbing data. So according to his Garmin the distance is 0.6km, average grade 10.4 and max 15.4. I think my legs "agree" with this data as I struggled up the climb using my 39-27. Yet for the laps I was in the pack I passed you. I think your tactic could have worked for me if I have better time-trial pace endurance which I am still working on. At the end I have to catch you and the other guys and ran out of people to and legs to work with. All in all I found a lot of positives for my first road race in 2008. See you on the road!

Stuart Lynne said...

Well that happened to me too. The last climb split the group up badly and each emerging group of riders worked hard to stay away from any chasers.

I'm not sure what happened behind me. But in front there was a group of four, another group of three, and then my group of three. That's the way we came out of the climb and that's the way we finished.

BTW I had forgot to put on my 12-25 so was doing the climb in my 39-23 :-) I can climb faster than I did. I just couldn't have done it faster seven times.