Monday, May 12, 2008

Bear Mt. Report

Heading to Bear Mountain:
After the Ft. Ritchie Crit Kate, Evan and I loaded into Kate’s Honda Fit and headed to New York for the Bear Mountain road race to take place the following day. Turns out you can cram a lot of shit up in the Honda Fit. I was really rather amazed, especially considering we were operating without a roof rack. Our inventory included the following:

- three bikes
- three people
- three helmets
- three pair road shoes
- three bags
- four gallons of water
- 12 bottles of beer (evan’s prime prize)
- one floor pump
- one set spare wheels
- yoga foam roller thing
- eight bananas (give or take)
- one folding chair
- ….hmmmmm and some other stuff

Oh, and we were lucky enough to end up with the DELUXE room at the Days Inn in Nanuet. That's right, D-Lux....

The course:
4 lap course of roughly 14 miles each (56 mile total) with a 3.5 mile climb per lap. Aside from the climb, it was a pretty chill course, oh, and it had a downhill finish.

Race Report:
Back in the winter I expressed a desire to learn to love climbing as much as I love birthday cake. Still a bit of a disconnect there, but I thought going to Bear Mountain was a good step in the direction of improving my climbing skills.
(photo credit:

I’m still trying to figure out if I operate best using an associative or dissociative approach to dealing with pain and suffering on the bike. I think most of the top athletes in any endurance sport tend to use an associative approach by tapping into their pain as a kind of a masochistic fix. The Buddhist in me would like to us the dissociative approach, but I can’t seem to convince myself that the pain is just a state of mind. I should do a lit. review on this at some point.

Things were going ok until we hit the climb for the second time. My legs got heavy, my quads were throbbing, and a gap opened up between me and the lead group. I new I could probably catch them on the flats just after the climb. This was a mistake. I should have just absolutely buried myself …did I have it in me though …still trying to figure that out.

Just after I lost contact with the lead group the sausage parade came through (men’s pro1/2), passing myself and the other small group of ladies I was with. Immediately upon passing us they sat up, creating a sausage road block, therefore sealing our fate of chase group for what would be the remainder of the race. Oh well, that’s racing for you. That’s the price you pay for losing contact.

Meanwhile, up front, Lorena was turning the screws and really putting the hurt on the women’s field. Unfortunately, no one was willing to go with her on any of the breaks she initiated. The course is a little counter intuitive. It is a climber’s course; however, it doesn’t really do much to reward a pure climber in the end because the climb is located so far from the finish. So even if Lorena had gotten away on the climb on the last lap, they would surely catch her on the long flats. In the end it came down to a field sprint which resulted in Kate and Lorena taking 5th and 6th respectively. The podium was swept by the Canadian crew... this seems to be a habit.

As for me, I found some ladies to work with. I fancy myself queen of pace line organization. It’s a lot like hosting a party (click invite on right). I have a knack for it. I rolled in somewhere ….not in the top ten.


Cat 1/2/3 Women, 56 miles, 55 starters
1. 232 Beth Miller, North Atlantic-Velo /
2. 244 Jen Stephenson, Team Ultralink
3. 205 Joanie Caron, Equipe Cascades
4. 231 Sinead Miller, UPMC Cycling Performance
5. 214 Kate Fiore, HPC Powered by Altarum
6. 204 Lorena Candrian, HPC Powered by Altarum
7. 210 Sabra Davison
8. 217 Audrey Friedrichsen Scott, Bikeway/Verge Sport
9 230 Alyssa Mellon, Team Ultralink
10.237 Lucie Poulin, Le Yeti


Lorena said...

Could you please print out some of those invitations before the next race? We can carry them in our jersey pockets and pull them out as needed. I sure could have used your paceline party planning expertise at Bear Mtn. Maybe the Canadian women were shy about working in a paceline because they weren't sure if they were cordially invited to the break away group. I didn't know that hospitality was the key! Perhaps offering a drink would help too.

Anna said...

I think the carrot approach always works best. Although, pace lining off the back of the field is a lot like combining efforts to survive after a ship wreck. Social norms might work differently when pace lining off the front. I'll let you know next time I'm up there!!!

As far as the Canadians go ...maybe you should put a Canadian flag sticker on your seatpost for the northern races?

Chickin said...

That song "Blame Canada" from the South Park movie is stuck in my head right now... Nice job at the races this weekend and I love Lorena's new nickname Stormin' Mormon. Now I just need a good one for Anna!