October 30, 2017
I’ve continued to race each weekend because I am having a lot of fun. I am also able to work hard in the races and really “hurt”. That sounds like a bad thing, but for me it is terrific. It means that I am rested and in shape and thus I can dig very deep and really push myself hard. It is a difficult sensation to describe, but when you are in shape and rested there is a level you can get to, an effort you can put forth, that is just not there at other times. It is almost as if you can recruit more muscle fibers to work, and your heart and lungs can push more blood and oxygen. You can bring out a huge effort and it feels terrific to know that your body and your mind have such a large capacity.
On October 22nd I raced in Lower Salford Township at the Crossasaurus Awesome Race (No, I have no idea where that name came from). We had a very competitive field of athletes on a fast course. I’m still not front row in the starts so I have to fight my way forward in the opening lap of the race. That is exactly what I did here as I was about 20th position as the race opened up and 11th after the first lap (but tacked onto the back of the lead group into the 2nd lap). On lap two is where the attacks began from everyone causing the race to fracture. I fought forward into 6th place but the leaders were gone.
In my group were 7 guys all of whom were fighting for position. I continued to fight for control of my group and to try to break guys off but it was to no avail. Nobody was giving an inch and a few were throwing down attacks of their own. Greg Ferguson and Johan Anestad each put major digs in forcing me to search for more power to bring them back. At last we came into the finale with still 7 of us, but I held the lead and sprinted early distancing the group to come in 6th (only 8 seconds off 5th).
The following weekend, October 28th, I raced in Highland Park, New Jersey in a Mid Atlantic Series race. We had 54 very competitive athletes at the start. As I had zero points in this series I was given a 4th row start position (which is far from ideal). I hoped for some luck at the start to find some space to jump up to the leaders but this was not to be. The guys in from of me started slowly and I was swamped from the get go and stuck toward the rear of the race. No problem, I just had to patiently work my way forward.
As the race strung out in the 1st lap, I pushed forward every chance I could working up to 22nd position going into lap 2. Here I attacked hard and rode my fastest lap of the day bringing myself SO VERY close to the large lead group and up to 13th position. I continued to push my body and drive forward gaining several more positions and coming oh so close to the group fighting for 5th place. I ended the day in 10th 18 seconds off the 5th place finisher.
Although I have not been racing at the front yet this season, I’ve had loads of fun. Each race I had the chance to fight forward and each time I did actually get close to the lead group. I’ve been able to really push my body (and mind) hard and drive my limits. I feel like I have improved in my abilities and technique. I’m not through yet; there are more races to come and I WILL race with the leaders before the season is through.