Some Friday Night action...
Headed out to the track in what felt like the first day of summer racing this year. It wasn't unusually warm - but it was dry. Since I was going to head over to Cheney that night (a four hour drive), I raced the first and last women race and the Cat 3 men's point race.
This first photo taken by wheelsinfocus.com is evidence of how hard I'm pushing... notice the body language? I'm giving it everything I've got to get some points. And it looks like Annette is too!
In the 6x5 points race, Annette and I both contested as many sprints as possible. But in a field of about 30 guys, our work was cut out for us! After the second to last sprint coming into corner two, I motioned to Annette for an attack and thankfully she was game. We put 1/2 lap into the guys before they even knew what hit them.
Bilko, being the wonderful announcer that his is in never giving the race away to the racers, didn't mention it to the racers. So Annette and I swapped leads for the next 5 laps, digging super deep and keeping the fellas at bay. Why didn't they chase?
Looks like they were thinking about it....
But alas, no one caught us. I had to dig DEEP. Check out this rare photo of my pain face. Winning the final sprint put me into 3rd for the Cat 3's! Not bad, not bad! But I did feel it the next day, that's for sure.
I had to lay down for a while after that one. The sky was spinning. Those are the kind of races and efforts I live for.
Next up? The woman's points race. With sprint every four laps. We had a really small turnout - ladies where are you??!!!??? But everyone came ready to race so although our field was small, it was competitive. Amara always comes ready to play and she pipped me at the line for a sprint...
No worries though - as I put her to work for the final couple of sprints. After that move we had a sizable gap over the field, so we kept the pace up and put some time into the field. Not only did Diana Boursaw catch my pain face in the cat 3 race - but she also caught Amara's!
At one point Amara said, "I'm not going to sprint Jen!" or at least I think she said that? Too funny. She did really well though - and I'm stoked to have done some two up team pursuit with her!
That night, Chris and I drove to Cheney, a town about 15 miles outside of Spokane for the Senior State Crit Championships. We got in at 2am and were up at 8:30 so Chris could race in the Cat 5's. The fields were small - with only 8 guys in his field. But he finished! And beat one guy! Not bad, not bad at all!
My field was bigger than expected with 12 super fast ladies ready to throw down for a state title. Bikesale.com had the best representation with 4 ladies, followed by Group Health with 3. Then there were several solo riders - including one girl from Montana who was ready to throw down and collect all the primes. The course was selective - requiring not only semi-sustained climbing ability but downhill cornering and a headwind, power section. I have to be honest - my legs felt terrible. Track racing the night before and a four hour drive? Not the ideal prep - but I gave it a go and suffered with the best of them.
Bikesale kept the pace high - with Lise being on great form - leading the pack for over a lap and shattering the field. Lise can also corner like a madwoman - and it was super fun following her amazing line down through the turns - she is so steady. The hill was interesting - shallow then steep, then shallow but taxing on the legs. By the finishing laps my mind had to will my body to keep pushing. We did about 20 laps? And each time up the hill someone would push the pace. It was brutal. And awesome! Late into the race, with 5 laps to go, a $50 prime was announced and all I could think of was gas money! Plus I had great positioning - third wheel with Lise leading, Alison second and then myself. I sprinted 100% to the line and barely pipped Lise. That time up the hill I was in a dark, dark hole. I was breathing hard, mouth open, legs exploding, foaming at the mouth - and somehow managed to hang on. Going into the bell lap, it was everything I could do to latch on the to bikesale train - but was positioned too many wheels back (5th I think?) so coming out of the final corner, I sprinted to the line to get third, silver in the state. Morgan won - great job for her! It's great to see team tactics come into play and pull off the win - congrats to them. It took me near two hours to feel normal again. Icing on the cake, for sure!