I want to start criteriums.

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by JohnnNguyen, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. JohnnNguyen

    JohnnNguyen New Member

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    Hey guys! As you guys can tell by the title, I would like to start competing in ameteur criteriums.

    I've been riding for fun for about 2 and a half years, riding about twenty to thirty miles a day. As of lately, I have been riding at a brisk pace (maybe 15 to 17 mph) for about 30 to 40 miles every session.

    To get to the point, I would love some tips on getting up to criterium level. So far, I've gathered that I should join a cycling club, and let them kick my butt a good bit until I can keep up. One problem I am facing are hills. Where I live is full of short and steep hills with almost no flats. What can I do to hit the hills with a good speed with out half killing myself and how can I train for criteriums in general? What are some good distances, speeds, techniques, and cross training ideas?
     
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  2. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    That's a big subject, but you're on the right track. Start by finding a local racing club that accepts newer riders. That is probably the most important step as many of your other questions will be answered if you do that.

    But overall, you'll need to keep riding a lot. You'll need to ride faster over time as your fitness improves. You'll need to develop very good cornering skills to race crits and mostly you'll need to learn to ride fast on other rider's wheels and to ride safely at speed in large groups on tight courses. Joining a good racing club is the best way to get started but keep riding and ride a lot until you find a good club.

    -Dave
     
  3. JohnnNguyen

    JohnnNguyen New Member

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    Thanks for the advice! about to see if there are any clubs near.
     
  4. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Find an empty industrial park or one unused after hours. Go kill yourself doing intervals going around a 4-corner square about the size of a city block or two.

    Practice cornering close to from the curb, seeing how fast you can corner over busted pavement, manhole covers, wide paint lines and slick bricks.

    Go into a cemetery with paved, narrow access roads thru it. Take the tight corners as fast as you can. Your line will be perfect or you'll be kissing headstones.

    Find some more experienced training partners and bang handlebars and shoulders with them. Get used to incidental contact.

    Find out where your local Tuesday/Thursday evening World Criterium Championships are held and start racing the 'B' race. Get dropped. Get back on. Get dropped. Get back on.

    Get yourself a junker, used frame and beater components that work, Consider it a sacrificial pile-o-parts. Get yourself a half-assed decent wheel set with good tires to race on.

    Practice hard to NOT say, "Hold your line!". Practice harder to power away from guys that do.
     
  5. JohnnNguyen

    JohnnNguyen New Member

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    oh thanks! Hopefully I won't be kissing headstones.... but really though, thanks!
     
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