Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Kitties tear it up in the 'Noke!

This Fourth of July weekend, Jen and I were Roanoke bound. The ID3 is an omnium consisting of a 1.87 mile time trial and two downtown crits. We both competed in this last year and really enjoyed it, so it has become a staple on our race calendar. With so many from local teams competing in this race, it was a great way to get away for the weekend and still feel like you’re with family during the holiday. The only bummer was that the 4th landed on a Monday this year instead of a Sunday so we missed the fireworks…not that it would have mattered due to the torrential downpour!

Saturday’s Mill Mountain TT
The first of the three races was the 1.87 mile time trial. You may be thinking, “Hey it’s barely even two miles…how difficult could it be?” I invite you to try it out next year and see! Though this climb isn’t incredibly steep, due to the short distance you’ve got to push it to the max and there are little to no opportunities for recovery. The main thought going through my mind during this race was “It’s supposed to hurt, it’s supposed to hurt”, and hurt it did. When I asked Jen how she thought she had done, she basically said she was enjoying the ride and forgot for a moment that she was actually racing, until she realized close to the end that she was supposed to be holding off her hubby and our Manderkitten, Tim, who had started 2 minutes behind her. A few hours later, we were incredibly excited to see that Jen came in first and was this year’s “Queen of the Mountain”, with a time of 11:58. I came in with a time of 12:11 to secure the second place finish.

Sunday’s Downtown Criterium
The second race of the weekend took place in downtown Roanoke and was a fast, 5-corner, 1KM course with a particularly interesting section consisting of a 180 degree turn onto brick. This is my favorite of the two ID3 crit courses simply because it’s short and fast.
The initial few laps were held at a steady pace until we heard the first prime called out and we found ourselves sprinting to the line. Throughout the 45 minute race Jen and I took turns issuing attacks off the front, in an attempt to make a breakaway from the pack. With less than ten to go, Jen made an attack which I countered when she was brought back by the group. Though I was not able to make a solo breakaway, Emily (Tradewinds) and I were able to sustain a widening gap for the rest of the race. I came in second at the line and Jen won the field sprint, taking third for the day.

Monday’s Downtown Criterium
The second crit and last race of the weekend also took place in downtown Roanoke and was a technical “L” shaped course with a slight uphill finish. Early on in the race, Emily and a Virginia Tech rider had a gap from the rest of the pack which Jen and I spent about a lap closing down. With the heat picking up and the pace quickening, several primes were called with the group sprinting to the line on each. After being first to the line on one prime, Emily made a breakaway from the pack with Jen shortly bridging up behind her. The two worked together and were able to hold us off for the rest of the race. For the last several laps, Rebecca Keller (Dire Wolf) and the VT rider took turns setting the pace as I sat second wheel. On the last lap, Rebecca stepped it up and made an early move for the finish. Shortly after the last turn I came around her and was able to take the field sprint and secure third for the day. I heard later that Jen had an incredible sprint behind Emily and that the two road around for a lap after the race unsure of who had reached the line first. Emily ended up taking first for the day as well as the overall win for the omnium. Jen took 2nd for the omnium/“Queen of the Mountain” and I finished third.

A huge thanks goes out to the promoters of the Roanoke ID3 for a fun and successful race/holiday weekend.

Till next time,

“Crusher Cat”

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