Wednesday, April 12, 2006

PIR #1 4/11/06

PIR: an ongoing Tuesday night series that races around the LeMans racetrack at Portland International Raceway. It’s basically a criterium without any corners. It’s dead flat, a bit windy, and it seems like you’re always turning one way or another. On this particular night we did 14 laps, which turned out to be 28 miles.

The race: Fields are combined to make the packs big. As a 3, I have two options. I can race in the 3/4 combined field, expect to win and probably lose, and get no upgrade points even if I do win. Or, I can race in the 1/2/3 combined field, get some great training in, race with the big shots, and, though I would never expect to get them, have upgrade points waiting for us at the finish line.

It’s a short race and the pace is high. We went 28.8 mph on average with my max speed hitting 37.7 (on flat ground, dammit). We were booking, I thought, but Molly says it was a slow day. With nothing to lose, I raced pretty aggressive, often striking a match or even two to bridge or fill gaps*. In the second prime, I was sitting pretty coming into the last 300m, like 4th wheel. So I leapt. And then they started coming by me. No, no, blowing by me. Lesson learned. My heart rate stayed, despite my gasping pleas, at 195 for the duration of the following 2 mile lap. Ouch.

So, I knew that in the finishing sprint I wouldn’t be overtaking any of these sprinters, so I should start first. I came into it 2nd wheel, and jumped early (like 300m) for a long, long sprint. The pistons kept firing for what seemed like an eternity and only 7 guys got around me (albeit pretty humiliatingly quickly). 8th place. I’ll take it, with a big ol' smile.

I think this is the beginning of the prime sprint that learn't me some humility; I'm jumping around the orange guy, and everybody else is about to rocket by me:

*Obscure lingo lesson for mom and dad: the hard efforts you can kick out in a race are like a book of matches. Stronger racers have more matches that burn brighter and longer, but everybody’s only got so many. In a final sprint, you take whatever’s left of your book and torch it.


Blogger Patrick said...

And Sauvie Isle is where we make our match book bigger....

Except geez dude, am I going to be able to hang with you these days??


7:45 PM  

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