Tuesday, 5K Scratch Race

One of the training items I have learned to love this year is all the extra easy Z1 road miles associated with pre racing. Today is no different. In the past I never would have thought about doing a hour or so ride on race day. I did these in South Carolina for nationals and because I drove here I had room to bring a road bike along to continue this style of training and warm up. So, back to the LA River, this time going South towards the Ocean and all the big cargo cranes along the shore. I made it to an area that was a bit confusing and I was closing in on more than half an hour. Nice ride, south is a bit more scenic than north. Still a bit depressing though as you ride along to see all the homeless camps set up along this area. There are even tiny little communities of make shift tents along the way, sad to see.

Speed sensors, Amazon Prime to the rescue, placed an order yesterday after my unsuccessful local search. Ordered 2 actually, 1 that arrived today for me and 1 for Linsey that will arrive tomorrow. None to be had in LA but from the other side of the country, no problem.

Lunch and off to the track for my normal warm up procedure, 10 minutes warm up gear on the rollers, 10 minutes or so warm up gear on the track with a huge number of other riders, so much fun. A few 1/4 lap out of the saddle jumps and then back to install race gear. FFWD 4 spoke race wheels for the Scratch. As other bigger races, we have 22 in our field, they split the field, half start on the rail and half start on the blue band/apron with a holder pushing them to start. I’m on the blue band with Linsey pushing me off. We ride a lap but 2 go off the front before the gun, the announcer is telling the field that we didn’t start, still 2 off the front, eventually I see another late start racer get pushed off the apron and join the field and after about 4 to 5 neutral laps we get a start. I’m near the front for a while, the race is kind of inconsistent and crazy, most of these guys don’t race mass start races so hardly any one shoulder checks before moving. Midway, everyone slows significantly out of turn 4 and I have to almost lock up the rear wheel to slow enough. A crash occurs, not sure what lap, 2 riders down, one gets back in the race. Neutral for another 4-5 laps. At about 7 or 8 to go a break happens ahead of me, I jump and close the gap to the front pack but that takes a lot out of me. With 3 or 4 to go the pace heats up and I haven’t recovered enough to sprint hard leaving me with 14th of 21 finishers. One in the crash was out permanently. Later it looked like a collar bone, his arm in a sling the rest of the week. I was happy to be aggressive during the race just wasted energy at the wrong times to get a decent result. Training Peaks says I had a Peak Performance power for the race, another plus. 20 lap Scratch race equals about 30 laps in Masters terms I guess.