First Race: need some tips



Cruzzer08

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Jul 19, 2004
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I'm getting ready to do my first race this weekend and I would love some tips from the experienced racers. I'm 23 and I ride about 200mi.+ a week and keep about a 19-20mph average. This race is 26 miles but there arn't any Cats, 1st gets $250. They didn't really advertise it to well so it sounds like there will only be about 20 riders. Closed course, relitivly flat. Any tips or words of advise would be greatly appreciated.
 

wardie2000

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Jun 9, 2003
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Do you know how you compare with the other riders?

But as a general rule, in a large pack try and stay in the first 15. This allows you to draft, but still be in a position to go with any breaks. If the race is quite small, i would guess that there will be lots of small attacks. You can't go with every break, try and find out who the strong riders are, remember there number and keep an eye on them.

If you feel good go for it, but don't attack for the sake of attacking.
It's a short race so i would guess it will be a bunch sprint.

Good luck

Let me know how you get on
 

Cruzzer08

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Jul 19, 2004
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As far as comparing with other riders, I really just ride with my dad and brother-in-law but I am allot stronger then them. I rode with a club last weekend and those guys do allot of races including multiple century’s a year and they kept commenting on how strong I am. There were a few climbs where I stayed with whoever was in front and they seemed to be hurting allot more then me. So I think that I will be able to stay up with the front but I don’t know anything about racing strategy.
 

wardie2000

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Jun 9, 2003
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You said this is your first race. You will learn so much in this race.
The race is short, so there won't be much need for strategy. I think about saving yourself either for a last ditch attempt near the end, or a bunch sprint.

But if you see any strong riders go, have a go with them.
But just take in as much information as you can.

I don't know how long your season will continue for, but over here in the UK i have 2 races left. Remember what you learnt this season, and use it for next season. By this time next season you will know the local riders, courses and more tactics.
 

Roy Gardiner

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Sep 15, 2003
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Most important thing is to stay safe.

Don't be right on a wheel as you hit a corner - if he slows you have a good chance of going into the back of him.

Don't do anything sudden, like braking or switching your line.

Pick someone big who looks like they know what they're doing, follow the wheel.

If you get too close to the front, you'll get involved in the through-and-off line. Don't worry about that but go through smoothly without sprinting or slowing.

If you're there at the end, sprint. But don't sit up if you blow, keep going or someone will go in the back of you. Don't, really don't, switch in the sprint; hold your line.

If you're there and don't want to sprint - I can understand that, it's dangerous! - then attack with 800 yards to go. Eyeballs out, don't look round, don't stop. If someone catches your wheel, fair enough, it's your first race. But if you get a gap, you've a chance. Either way, flat out to the line.

If, as is in fairness much more likely, you get shot out of the back, don't take it to heart. Eddy Merckx didn't win his first race.

Be safe, have fun. Let us know how it goes?
 

Cruzzer08

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Jul 19, 2004
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Thanks Guys that really helps I'll give it a try and let you know how it turns out
 

Cruzzer08

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Jul 19, 2004
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Came in Second!! If you don’t count the tandem. Turns out the prize money was only for the marathon runners but nobody knew that until we were all sitting on the line. Crazy course too, there was 2 dirt road sections each about 800 yards my 700x23's got pretty squirrelly and the washboard threw my front derailleur out of adjustment. I also didn't reset my computer at the start of the race so I don't know how long it took me (less than a hour 15 minutes though) but I did notice and reset at the half way point so the last 13 miles I kept a 19.8mph average. It was allot of fun but as far as racing goes I don’t know how much of this ride was actually helpful.