Noda Grand Prix

So Sunday wrapped up my week-o-racing. I woke up feeling a little dehydrated but all in all, pretty good after Belews. One thing I’m thankful for is that I do recovery quickly and I was especially thankful for that this week/weekend.

This weekend was the first (hopefully annual) Noda Grand Prix. The event was put on by two riding buddies of mine and there was no way I couln’t race with it being 3 miles from my house! The women’s Pro/1/2 race was at 11:15 so I rode over to the race site to watch my teammates in action. It was a pretty “interesting” race but nothing terribly exciting. The race was supposed to start at 11:15 and I arrived just before 11, but they ended up being about 30 minutes behind schedule. So the morning included a lot more time on my legs waiting around than I anticipated but I rode home right after the P/1/2 race, ate a good lunch and opted for a nap before my race around 5pm.

I woke up from my nap feeling excited to go hard!  We had 4 Pain Pathways teammates in the race which was great. Lauren and I planned to go pretty hard from the start to see what we could do to shake a large part of the field. I got to the start line a little later than I should have and ended up having to line up 2nd row back, not ideal. I was right behind Lauen and figured we could still execute our plan, and we could of, but I totally dropped the ball in that department. I slipped getting clipped in and it took me 2 tries, which is WAY too long in a bike race, especially when you plan to attack from the start.

Nonetheless, Lauren got clipped in and was hauling bootie in an instant. It was all I could do just to get myself back into racing position after my clip in mishap, nevermind off the front! By the end of the first lap, Lauren and 2 or 3 other girls had established a pretty nice little break as I was working to get back into position.

By lap 2, I was back in action and ready to race. Knowing Lauren was up front in the break, it was our teams job to try to control the field and keep them from chasing the break. I will say I covered most all attacks and did a good job of that. Hajji was right there too riding REALLY strong and taking the lead for a little here and there. The other big team present in the race needed to get organized and start a rotating paceline to try to catch the break, but they didn’t seem to be doing that. About 3 laps in, Lauren had dropped the two girls in the break with her and she was out solo. Now, more than ever, it was more imporant for me to control the field and keep Lauren off the front. It was nice having to slow the field 🙂

Attack after individual attack was launched but we managed to keep the field together with about 8 of us. I was listening to the splits for Lauren go from 10, to 15, to 10, to 5, to 10, to 20 seconds lap after lap as we tried to slow the field. With just over 2 laps to go, I had a little gusto and decided to launch my first/only attack of the day. Luckily, my timing was just right as we had all just chased an attack and it seemed as though no one had much to react to mine. I was off the front pretty quickly and from there on out, it was an all out time trial for the last 2 laps to be sure not to be caught by the field.

Marianne said it looks like I'm smiling. I think dying is more appropriate

I was able to stay away for 2nd place, and Lauren was off the front in 1st. Hajji was able to sprint to a 3rd place finish in the field so it ended as a Pain Pathways 1/2/3 podium sweep! In my opinion, a perfectly executed race!

This was by FAR the most fun I’ve ever had in a 3/4 race; it was the same intensity as many of the Cat 1/2/3 races I’ve done and it was a great learning experience. It was fun to actually go head to head as the other girls were riding really strong!  But it’s always fun to win (or come in 2nd and my team to win) 🙂

I submitted for my Cat 3 upgrade today and I’m hoping it’s approved! I’m assured there’s no reason it won’t be as I have the points as well as the finishes, but I guess ya just never know!

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