Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Sturbridge RR

Sorry this has taken me so long to post, life's been a bit hectic. Here we go...
In retrospect, I shouldn't have raced Saturday. I had a crazy week with ups and downs. Medical testing on Tuesday meant 36 hours without food (don't worry - just a check up - and the results turned out very positive!) then Tuesady, Wednesday, Thurs, Fri, and Saturday nights I had rehearsals and performances for the musical 42nd Street, in which I performed on FOUR instruments. Yes, four: flute, clarinet, soprano and alto saxes. It was lots of fun, especially because I played beside some of my former students who are awesome girls getting ready to graduate and head off to college. :) I really wanted to get a picture at the last performance to post on my blog, but when I went to take the pic, I discovered I had left the memory card at home!! Oh, I hate when I do that. So, I'm left with a Kodak moment in my mind and none to share. (Sorry, Dad, I know you hate those Kodak references, since you've worked for Polaroid for as long as I've been alive.) Anyways, so crazy me, in the midst of all this and working, I did not miss a workout on the bike. Even while in calorie defecit from the fasting for medical testing. Ok, I didn't complete all my sprints that day, the anesthesia still had me a little loopy, so I went easy and just did some jumps and spinners. But I rode. Friday night I had only 6 hours of sleep, then I headed off to the race with my awesome temamate Susanne for a 10:15 am start in Sturbridge.

It was only my third race this year, but so far all three times lining up at the start has seemed so surreal. Like I'm on Mars. I feel like I hardly know anybody! There are so many new faces, new kits, new bikes. There's a lot of new blood in the pack. This is a great thing, except when some of these new riders are very strong but wild on a bike. There were some super sketchy bike handling maneuvers during this race. I was truly frightened a couple of times. One girl LITERALLY went across the entire field from the right to the left side on a decent (when we were spaced a little more liberally) without even looking over her shoulder! The majority of the pack was left hitting our brakes while dropping our jaws in astonishment. The same girl locked it up in the 270-degree right hand turn and almost took herself out, and she also took me out of contention in the final sprint with a crazy swerving and slowing up move in the final 150 meters. I was left with no choice but to let up on the pedals and veer to the side, almost crashing and taking out others behind me, like one of my favorite girls, Marianne, who had quite a lot to say after that fiasco. Look, if it's not common sense to hold a reasonably straight line when you're accelerating to 30+ mph on bikes with bodies all around you and nothing separating the skin on your ass from the asphalt except a thin layer of stretchy fabric then you could do us all a favor and at least READ the USCF rulebook, which spells it out for you! Grr.
Under "General Racing Rules" page 35, articles 106 & 107:
1O6. No rider may make an abrupt motion so as to
interfere with the forward progress of another rider, either
intentionally or by accident [relegation or disqualification;
possible 20 days suspension if a crash results].
1O7. Dangerous Rider. Any rider who appears to present a
danger to the other competitors may be disqualified by the
Chief Referee, either before or during a race.
This is from section 4 of the rulebook, which refers to stage racing, but same concept:
4H8 Sprints
(a) Failure to maintain line during a sprint or other
First offense: $35 fine and relegated to
back of group
Second offense: $70 fine, relegated to back of
group, and 1 minute
Third offense: $140 fine and
(b) Extremely dangerous behavior in a sprint
$140 fine and disqualification

I finally just looked at the results for that race... turns out her teammate won! Ha! What do you bet she was trying to BLOCK me in the final sprint, since I had outsprinted said teammate for the win last weekend, and I was in good position to win again!?!?! Yes, you've made me mad. Intentionally threatening my safety and that of all the women around me over the finish of the Sturbridge RR? Really sad.
Like I said, lots of new blood this year....

(more to post on Sunday's race, coming soon)


Michele said...

I said this to Marianne too: lodge a protest with an official. Stop the madness!

I'm glad you're both okay. It was scary out there.

afl1976 said...

stop the madness is right!! I'm glad to see I was not the only one scared... but it's early yet... we can only hope this all irons itself out. If any of us win the lottery, let's make a pact to buy rollers for the entire pack.

Anna Milkowski said...

Oh yikes! I am worried. I can only imagine Marianne's thoughts! Congrats on such a rocking start to the season, Rebecca.