Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

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Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby md6 » 09 Sep 2015 09:59

Dulwich Paragon Club Championship Novice Road Race
Organiser: Dulwich Paragon CC
Venue: Hog Hill (Redbridge) Cycle Circuit AKA the Hoggenberg
Format: Closed circuit road race 3 laps warm up, 25 mins racing +3 final laps. Total distance 22k
Cost £5 - no freebees or anything but prizes for the podium.

So this was my first step into road racing. The course is 2k in length with a fair old climb and some tight technical curves, in total we raced 21k and climbed 300m and were riding clockwise.

The field numbered 22 in the end so was reasonably large and of a real mixed ability. The course started with 3 laps paced by some cat 2 riders, gradually increasing to race pace. It was a good chance to learn the lines, get a feel for the strong riders and generally get to know the people around you. The first lap was uneventful and reasonably slow - at about 18mph, the second at about 22 was more eventful as I was carved up on one of the tighter turns when another rider got his line wrong. I decided that I would follow his wheel from further or make sure I could see him before the corners from that point on.

Lap 3 and the cat 2 riders pull out of the way and instantly theres an attack at the front. I was sat at about 15th wheel at that point and saw it happen, thankfully it was on the down and flat section. I pushed hard down hill as the bunch started to split and made the front group of about 10. I settled into the middle of that group and stayed there for a lap or two gradually aiming to move up the bunch on the flats and downs. Unfortunately as we hit a very technical section (a right hairpin followed by 2 90 degree lefts) that led into the climb there was an attack - I was still coming into the first hairpin in 7th or 8th and the front of the bunch went. By the time I was through the curve and able to start accelerating there was a gap. The front 5 were gone, and really attacked the hill putting some gaps into me and the people I was around.

The hill was starting to be a problem now, it is fairly steep - I think that it is around 10 to 12% at the top... but it increases all the way up so as you start to get to the top it gets steeper. This was starting to be a problem, but there is a drop afterwards followed by the 'alpine bends' back up to the start/finish line. I was starting to get dropped by the end of the climbs an was having to chase back on during the descents and on the flats. The accelerations out of the bends we really starting tt hurt me and the hill was killing my legs. Every time I closed up on the bunch I dropped off on the hills. I had to get into TT mode and just keep the effort even, I couldn't deal with the constant changing pace.

as we got into the last 2 laps I was closing on the bunch in front of me. There were about 5 riders there and they had stopped working together which meant I could start to close up on them, I was starting to feel sick and my legs were ruined. Then I hit that bloody hill again. and there were nothing in my legs. I came to a virtual standstill, and could hear that the front riders were being cheered over the line to start the last lap. Head down and go for it.

the last lap was just awful. I was hanging off the back of the 5 riders in front who were all bunched up - I think a few of them were trying to save something for the last hill and I was getting closer. Then as I neared the back the tight turns and again there was an attack. I couldn't respond and I couldn't get up the f**king hill either. iw as out of the saddle fighting my way up and over I put in an effort to try and close back up on the stragglers from the group in front who went too early, I had 15 to 20 m to make up, we hit the alpine bends, down to 10m, through the second bend 7m, we hit the final bend and I was still5m back from the 2 or 3 who were sprinting for the line. Not enough road to catch them so I checked no one was behind me, and sat up and spun in with a HR of 180, barely able to breathe, and legs done, I felt ruined and rolled over the line in 11th place.

my hands were shaking, I felt like puking and I could barely walk. And. It was f**king awesome!

As I had expected there were around 10 people I expected to be stronger than me, particularly up the hill. It was steep and the constant increase in gradient made it really hard to settle into a rhythm. Going up it 11 times also made it a pain with the total climb of 300m in such a short distance really made me suffer. If there was less climbing - or less steep climbing I think I would've done better, I also missed the move as I was sitting too far back in my group when it happened to get further up the field. The accelerating from corners and over hills is something i'm not used to either, but all in all it was really good fun (if that's what one could call it) and I've learned a fair bit to be better next time. I think that i'll have a proper go at racing next year...maybe
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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby IanM » 09 Sep 2015 11:40

Ace! You make it sound very tempting, yet horrifically painful at the same time :) I like the idea of the cat2 riders setting the pace to start with, to give you time to get used to it.
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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby Jack Hughes » 09 Sep 2015 12:28

I've looked on Endo for this activity. I had a strange compulsion to look at your heart rate data. Sounds like an ace thing to do :D
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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby CCS » 09 Sep 2015 14:55

Well done!
Sounds great / horrible!
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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby King Sad » 09 Sep 2015 15:46

I just had a look on youtube at the circuit and I can see what you mean about the climb :o Looks a great set up.

Well done :D Echo the idea of the 'pace setters' to get things rolling. :D 180bpm :o awesome :D
It seemed like a good idea at the time :? .



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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby md6 » 09 Sep 2015 16:02

This is a link to the Garmin data (hopefully it will work for anyone who wants it)

https://connect.garmin.com/activity/891913280

HR mirrors the course profile quite well I think...
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Re: Dulwich Paragon Club Championships (Novice Race)

Postby md6 » 09 Sep 2015 16:08

CCS wrote:Well done!
Sounds great / horrible!


It was both those things, in equal measure! Ok not quite equal, it was much more horrible than great until it was over
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