I'm at the front at 60 MPH --
evidence that I can descend, at least when pushed!
The post on sailing with the family that I planned for tonight has been delayed due to more pressing topics, namely this weekend's Fitchburg-Longsjo Classic.
I'll be heading to the four-day stage race on Thursday morning, bringing two bikes and a car load of other assorted crap. This will be my first stage race as a cat II, and probably the most-legit race that I've ever done.
Ironically, I'll be using the same bike in this year's TT
albeit, with a more legit TT set up this time around (thanks Mark!)
I last raced Fitchburg in 2006 with BVF team mates Scott, Adam, and Chris. It was my last race as a 4, although I didn't have anything to show for it.
I believe he was third, but it might be second,
hard to say
My fitness is most definitely well off-peak, and I'm starting to feel a bit of a mid-season burnout coming on. Truth be told, I nearly didn't register, especially when all but one of my team mates (Jesse, and he'll be doing the pro/1 event) decided not to race, but I opted in at the last minute. I'm racing, I guess, for the sake of gaining experience in a longer, harder race, and for truly earning that mid-season break, which will now come one week later, beginning with the end of Fitchburg, on Sunday afternoon. Also, this will probably be my only opportunity to do a cat II- only race this year.
I'm hoping that a short break will have me rested and excited to start training for some of my favorite events, which come later in the season.
As for Fitchburg, I was leafing through the tech manual yesterday, realizing that this will be the first race I've ever done where teams are expected to bring caravan vehicles. Needless to say, I will not have a vehicle in the caravan, and will be relying of SRAM Racing Services for spare wheels, in the event that I suffer a flat. But, that level of support is indicative of the level of racing at this event, and I'd be lying if I didn't say that I'm feeling a little intimidated.
So, here I am without the best form, grasping at straws for motivation, and stressing about everything that I have to do to get ready to go. To make matters worse, we had a torrential thunderstorm blow through here this afternoon, which washed out the Tuesday night world championship ride, so I was at home riding my rollers, stewing about how tough the race was going to be, and how slim my chances for any kind of a result are.
I somehow managed to make it nearly to the end of a two hour roller session (the longest I've ridden inside since the weather got marginally nicer), when the movie I was watching finally started to get interesting. I'm not going to tell you what the film was, because it's embarrassing.
Suddenly, I heard a thud. It was my front wheel hitting the floor. I looked to down and to my right, realizing that I was about to become very intimate with the kitchen floor. Although I seemed to teeter there for ever, I somehow wasn't able to clip out from my pedal, and before I knew it, I landed on the ground with a second, louder, thud, my rear wheel still spinning furiously in the air. I've been riding rollers since I was 16, and this was a first for me.
I blinked, relieved to find that I was OK, and also relieved that no one had been around to see this disgraceful transgression -- I could just picture my room mate coming out of her room gasping "Oh my God, are you OK?" -- I got myself out from under the bike and stood up.
Best of all, I had wisely kept my hands on the handlebar, sparing myself a wrist injury.
"Well, that's it," I thought, "rock bottom." Surely, it couldn't possibly get any worse. Suddenly, I started to feel a little better about Fitchburg. After all, no matter what happens -- even if I get dropped in every single stage -- I know that I won't fall off my rollers.
How do I know? In the name of insurance, I'm leaving them at home.
P.S. This post was written from my sofa. After six long months, I finally have internet at home!