My legs are feeling good, the weather is amazing and PIR is tonight...but I can't race! Its been a quiet few weeks since I last raced and its hard watching guys I've been racing against (and even beating) getting results. I see a particular rider in the results posts and think about how I could have beaten them...its killing me!
Had talked to my co-worker, who is just getting into road racing as a supplement to his off-road racing, about leading him out in the 4/5 race. Its a bit of a risk, the 4/5 race. You never know who is going to come out and pose a serious danger to himself and everyone else. I've had pretty good luck out there. Only taken down once, at low speeds. It pretty much amounted to falling over half-way in the grass. But I've heard/seen several bad take-downs because of over aggressive/stupid/ambitious riding. Happens a lot with the 5's. Delusions of grandeur, I guess. We're all entitled to a bit of it as cyclists...after all, why do we all go out weekend after weekend, getting our buts kicked by some of the same riders we know are stronger? But the chance to lead out a friend, see them take the line in a full-on sprint for the win would be worth the risk. That's pretty much how it always is...worth the risk. And me? I got a win in the same race last year. All things considered, a modest win. But a win, and that is unlike second place in ways I can't describe. I dreamt about it as a junior, never realizing it. I allowed myself to dream about it again in '06 when I lined up again for the first time since '89. Worth every bit of pain, torment, sweat and fear leading up to that moment- worth every bit of failure, set-back, and negative internal monologue. In that instant, I shut up the voice of failure. For a moment it looked away, pretended not to notice I had just kicked its bitch-ass. I'd won. I want more. I want more. And any amount of effort, dreaming, and planning is worth the risk of getting another. Always worth the risk.
I took the shims out from under my cycling shoes this morning before my commute based on the theory that the shims might be exacerbating my leg problems...While it's hard to tell immediately if this will be an improvement, I definitely wasn't feeling the same pressure on my hamstrings. I'm hopeful that removing the additional leverage of being almost 5mm away from the pedal spindle will translate into less pressure on my bunk legs. Anyway, I'm more flexible now, and I may not even need the added angle on the shoes..that may be part of it too. We'll see.
I got a call today from RC about my NEW new white-hot Tarmac Pro SL frame waiting for me. I wanted to run down to pick it up as soon as I heard it was in, but couldn't...damn job.
In the continuing quest to dial in my riding position/kit/feeling of seriousness as a racer I said 'go' on this recent acquisition even though my current Tarmac Pro is probably sufficient and something I could work with. Even though every day I ride it, it doesn't feel quite right.... But I'm glad that now that I have it, and that I waited for the white one, when a black one was offered. Its pretty slick...and PRO. Now all I need is a set of carbon tubies to round it out...and some wins. Pictures to follow. Problem now is how to keep it clean!
Maybe I'll restore my vintage Cinelli..I've been thinking about doing it. Can't decide if I should go totally retro, put on all the old Campy, or make it relevant and put some click-shifting on. I've already got the tubies on the way courtesy of Challenge Tires. Thankyou! One pair for the track bike (vintage Holdsworth, circa 1989) and once pair for the Cinelli (circa 1986), and one pair for backup. Sounds like the Cinelli should go old-school...I'll just rock it with six on the back and friction shifting. Pictures to follow.