Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tour of New Braunfels

After a solid month of consistent training, I was itching to race. So I joined some of my Brain and Spine teammates at the Tour of New Braunfels. Henri and I had some good naps Friday resulting in us arriving at the Super 8 around 2 am Saturday morning. But it was worth it having my soigneur by my side all weekend. Saturday was the circuit race on a 2 mile closed loop at Canyon Lake. It was terribly windy and frigid, but the 4s were racing with the women's open, so I warmed up in about 30 seconds.

The best part of Saturday was that I got to race with my team's women's 3s. It was beautiful to see our ladies going off the front, attacking and controlling the pace.

Teammate Kim Ciolli brings the pain to the women's open field during the Omloop Circuit Race.

I knew since it was a women's open I would have trouble hanging on, but I impressed myself by staying with the group for 25 minutes. There was this hill that everyone would sprint up and by the 4th or 5th lap, I was too far at the back of the group starting up the hill. My legs hit a lactic acid wall and I was dropped by the group. I think if I had been a little further up, I would have been able to hang on for another lap or two. I finished out the last 20 minutes on a self-prescribed ITT for training purposes. My only other 4 teammate, Allison Floyd, dropped her chain twice. However, our 3s did great and it was exciting to race with them, if only for 25 minutes.

 Omloop Circuit Race: The upside of getting dropped is that you get more vanity shots.

 Teammate Jenny Park prepares to win the Omloop Circuit Race.

Circuit race results:

1 Felton Anna Kindhuman sports cycling 
2 Moak Shannon
3 Acosta Barbara
4 Kurz Natalie Kind Human Sports 
5 Martin Kelley
6 Gendler Karla Colavita Racing Inc 
7 Kjellberg Kristen Team Seton Brain and Spine 
8 Floyd Allison Team Seton Brain and Spine Cycl 
9 Davis Kelley Velossimo Racing 
10 Bui Jane Velossimo Racing 
11 Simpson Sarah Shama 
12 Duong ChanTam T3Multisports 
13 Porterfield Haley T3Multisports Elite Junior Cycl 

Sunday the 4s were racing by ourselves. Two girls from West End Bikes in Houston showed up, joking around at the start line. They had only raced once before, and started pulling a lot off the front. I expected they would blow up, but they were strong! We chased down attacks by Karla (Colavita) while Faith (Austinbikes) and Allison earned 1st place puller awards. I managed to make it up the repeating hills without getting dropped, and even pulled a little bit. But I knew I was no match for the uphill sprint finish. Unfotunately Allison ended up pulling the group the last 1K and got sprinted past by most of the field. Shannon (Bike Barn) who had been hiding in the back the whole time, sneakily sprinted past all of us for a beautiful first place finish. I was happy with a pack finish, and the knowledge that I STILL need some work on hills. 
 Colavita's Karla Gendler and I race up a hill.

 Road race results:

1 Moak Shannon
2 Acosta Barbara
3 Manchester Audrey Southern Elite 
4 Atkinson Allison
5 Martin Kelley
6 Felton Anna Kindhuman sports cycling 
7 Gendler Karla Colavita Racing Inc 
8 Kurz Natalie Kind Human Sports 
9 Kjellberg Kristen Team Seton Brain and Spine 
10 Floyd Allison Team Seton Brain and Spine Cycl 
11 Miller Linda ALS-C3 
12 Watkins Faith
13 Baird Corey Velossimo Racing 
15 McCampbell Amy Cycle Camp USA 
16 Davis Kelley Velossimo Racing 
17 Dumouchelle Rebekah
18 Carbonneau Laura Velossimo Racing 
19 Seesholtz Holly
20 Cazares Mariana Laredo Cycling Club 
21 Bailey Debra Austin Flyers Women's Cycling 
22 Duong ChanTam T3Multisports 
23 Piper Tamera
24 Lash Alyssa
25 Sanchez Leticia Laredo Cycling Club 
26 DeMartino Denise CYCLE CAMP USA

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Seton Brain and Spine Ladies' Weekend

This weekend was my last before I start the 16 month journey to graduation. So of course, I spent it in Austin with my bicycle, and the ladies of Team Seton Brain and Spine.

Saturday morning we met at 9am at the Veloway, a 3 mile closed loop in south Austin, for a skills clinic. We practiced tight turns and picking up water bottles.

Showin those water bottles who's boss.

We also practiced scary things that might occur during racing, such as bumping up against other riders, and hitting the wheel of the person in front of you. The event culminated in the circle of death. We drew a circle by putting our water bottles on the ground, and then rode our bikes in said circle. If you were pushed out of the circle or put your foot down, you were out. Eventually, it was down to me and a new girl Faith, a commuter with newfound road and cyclocross skills. We were a pretty even match, and landed on a foot at the same time, resulting in a draw. But then we went at it again, until while pushing Faith with my shoulder, I lucked out and she put her foot down seconds before I lost my balance. It was so much fun! I can wait to teach some of the Aggies these drills.

Sunday we went for a 72 mile ride, and almost everyone showed up!

8 am meetup at Pure Austin

We left from Pure Austin Fitness, one of our rad sponsors, and headed southwest via Fitzugh. There were a few parts of the ride that were sketchy, with angry drivers, but we remained in one piece and the amount of hill-age was about perfect. I had just switched saddles and although my butt bones were screaming out from mile 30 onward, it was much better than the other saddle and riding on my girly parts. I felt really, really good on the bike. My back hurt less - I think because I wasn't constantly trying to push myself back onto the saddle. I could feel my previous level of fitness returning in my legs. In addition to feeling like I was on tiger blood, I had an amazing time chatting with my teammates on my first long ride with them. I couldn't have spent my last weekend of winter break in a better place.

Time for tacos in Dripping Springs