Middle aged man in Team Oregon skinsuit on a cyclocross racing bike, face contorted with visible effort

Race Report: GPRT #5 (Ninkrossi)

Published 2014-09-29


First ever race in Category B. Inauspicious but not embarassing finish. 27 of 50.

Not too much to say here. Weather started cool, rain two days prior meant no dust and solid footing. Tacky. By race time it was humid but not exactly warm. (Well it got plenty warm inside my skinsuit.)

Last year I joked that about half of the Cat C field is “second year beginners;” the implication is that my good base fitness and a favorable strength:weight ratio carried me through my good season last year. Conversely in every category above I can expect that I no longer have this advantage and Saturday’s race proved it. This is one my most favorable venues (hilly! bumpy! no recovery!) and none of it mattered. I’m in a category now where no one sucks.

I have never worked so hard for 27th place.

The only notable race moment was when, at the finish line on Lap 3 someone was ringing a large cowbell that I misheard as the finish bell I thought, “dang I left a lot more gas in the tank than I reckoned, I better cross the red line this lap.” Clearly, I was already sublactic and kind of hallucinatory — this was barely 25min into the race. So at the end of Lap 4 I heard the line official calling “two to go! Two to go!.” YIKES. Somehow I was barely passed laps 5 and 6, but the other fields — another novelty after Master’s C — began passing me. With great courtesy I must admit.

I haven’t raced with a computer since 2012 but this was the first race where I wondered what my splits looked like. Surely Lap 4 was my fastest, but how were 5 and 6? Slower or faster?

Other notes:

  1. Trepiditious handling and especially descending hurt me. I was worried about my collarbone but I also know these are perennial weaknesses.
  2. Still love the venue. Free beer. Great spectating. You can see the entire race from at least two vantage points.
  3. In Cat B the snake does not eat its tail. Racers are more closely clustered, less than 6min between winner and last non-mechanical racer. Everyone has baseline fitness and competence.
  4. Kids and family did not accompany me.