Race Report: Prospect Park USCF Cat 4

By the numbers:
Final position: 8/57
9 laps @ 3.4 mi/lap = 30.60 miles, averaging 23.9
Average HR: about 150 (low!); Max HR: about 178.

Overall: A good race! I placed! I even won $30!

Cat 3 Upgrade Status: 0 upgrade points, 1 top 10 finish, 3 pack finishes. (Needed: 20 pts OR 25 races.)

I was exceptionally well prepared for this race. I took yesterday easy by working from home, and took a nap during the middle of the day. I got enough sleep, ate properly, and hydrated properly. I even managed to empty the ol' digestive tract before the race. The single bottle of Perpetuem I had for the race proved to be a good idea.

Thumbs up on the equipment, too. I decided to run my Flash Point FP60s. What an efficient, wonderful wheelset. What a good idea.

It's amazing how much I can tell about a racer just by looking at cues. There are the obvious tips - such as a person's body fat percentage and cadence - that tip you off to major things. But, the subtlety in looking at someone's pedal stroke to see how tired they are, or of looking at how out of true their wheels are to know how technically savvy they are, that's just cool.

After reading Prehn's book, I learned that it doesn't take strength to win a road race, just smarts. I made a point of sitting in with the pack and staying out of the wind whenever possible. I knew that each and every break would be caught, and I was right! I was lazy, but stayed toward the front with the rubber side down.

A major part of my win was just spotting someone who knew what they were doing, and staying with them. I noted early on that rider 423, a man named Austin, knew what he was doing and had an easy time of staying toward the front. Instead of thinking about staying forward, I just remembered to not let Austin out of my sight. This meant not dropping too far back, and not passing him. It turned out to be an awesome tactic.

Dave was right there with me for this race. He should have stayed out of the wind a little more.

Always learning. Always improving.