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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post

    So passing everyone at 20 mph on a recovery ride must be a cat. 3 or lower order thing, right?
    Surely you're getting all of this "knowledge" from verbal communication with all of these riders you're observing, right? They're telling you all this in the second or two that they're passing? And you're passing it on as the bastion of information that you always are?

    Or do you have a separate radar for every categorized racer that instantly links to their strava and trainingpeaks account so you know exactly what type of ride they're doing in the context of their yearly racing and training plan?

    Inquiring minds want to know...
    Last edited by pedalbiker; 09-12-2017 at 02:33 PM.

  2. #52
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    Several times this year I have passed cars (or trucks) on my bike, how can I tell what Cat they are?
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  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    Surely you're getting all of this "knowledge" from verbal communication with all of these riders you're observing, right? They're telling you all this in the second or two that they're passing? And you're passing it on as the bastion of information that you always are?

    Or do you have a separate radar for every categorized racer that instantly links to their strava and trainingpeaks account so you know exactly what type of ride they're doing in the context of their yearly racing and training plan?

    Inquiring minds want to know...
    We in the lesser ranks could care less what these fast dogs have in their training plans. If they pass at 20 mph, they become very tempting targets for a chase. With me, it operates on a more basic, instinctive level, and requires restraint to hold off. . That's when this old dog is feeling good. Other days, I just try to stay out of their way.

    Strava? Nah. Easy enough to go by their visible signs of fitness, lean body mass, effortless cadence, and they pass everyone, never the reverse except around rest stops. They're always the rabbit and I'm the dog, salivating once again. Some riders sprint to stop signs. I chase down faster riders. Similar variable length interval training benefit. More fun, too!

    Nothing more pleasurable than once in a while, getting to be the rabbit. Knowing a rider going a mile or two faster is closing a gap behind, is about the best motivation there is. Blows 'em away when as they get closer, you slowly increase speed, so they have to work harder just as they think they've captured the prey. When they pass, you're also pumped up enough to grab their draft for a spell while they're recovering!

    This is no game to play with the big dogs, agree. We know our place and play amongst ourselves.

  4. #54
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    I have to agree with Fredrico.

    It's just being human. Admittedly, it's silly, but my heart honestly sinks a bit when someone pulls up on my left and passes with a smile. It feels like there's an unspoken exchange of knowing regarding relative strength.

    Conversely, I do feel a bit of satisfaction as I "eat" other riders. I don't rub it in, I'm just doing my thing. But I can't lie and tell you it doesn't feel good to chase and eat. If nothing else, it's causing you to work out harder.

    I'm not maniacal about it. Its harmless. Sometimes you crush, sometimes you're getting crushed.

    I remember once trying to keep up with some guy much older then me. I didn't want him to see me struggling, so I'd wait until he got around a bend out of view then peddle my a*s off. When I reached the cars, his bike was already on the roof of his. Humbling lesson. And I think I could see a tiny smirk on his face that he knew exactly how much he buried me.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxKatt View Post
    I have to agree with Fredrico.

    It's just being human. Admittedly, it's silly, but my heart honestly sinks a bit when someone pulls up on my left and passes with a smile. It feels like there's an unspoken exchange of knowing regarding relative strength.

    Conversely, I do feel a bit of satisfaction as I "eat" other riders. I don't rub it in, I'm just doing my thing. But I can't lie and tell you it doesn't feel good to chase and eat. If nothing else, it's causing you to work out harder.

    I'm not maniacal about it. Its harmless. Sometimes you crush, sometimes you're getting crushed.

    I remember once trying to keep up with some guy much older then me. I didn't want him to see me struggling, so I'd wait until he got around a bend out of view then peddle my a*s off. When I reached the cars, his bike was already on the roof of his. Humbling lesson. And I think I could see a tiny smirk on his face that he knew exactly how much he buried me.
    I was riding yesterday with a very small (4) but elite group of riders. One was the 2014 US nat'l road champ and 2015 US nat'l crit champ. We had just finished a punchy hour and a half of vo2 work (at least for me) and working our way through another couple hours of tempo/SST with higher efforts on the shorter climbs. A solo rider was ahead going well up a slight incline. We tempo'd past, said hello, and just kept motoring. He looked to be laboring pretty hard when we past him and his response to our "hellos" was sort of passive aggressive. Hard to explain. A few minutes later he slowly passes us clearly all over his bike. Annoyingly, he faded and we tempo'd right past and luckily turned up a steep section where he went straight.

    You never know who is out riding, their history or why they are out riding. The guys I was riding with were not going hard for them and if they really opened it up could have dropped pretty much anyone with in a few minutes. Their tempo is my vo2 for all I know...

    Honestly, the guy we past looked to be a decent rider in decent shape. It would have been great to have him slot in and ride with us rather than try and show us how big his dick was which turned out to be not so big. Total wanker. But yeah human I guess. Or just no experience competing which is where I think a huge difference in attitude comes from. The guys that compete at a high level really don't care what you are doing. They pretty much know what they need to get done and aren't worried about drag racing some wanker to the top of a highway overpass.

  6. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    Ha, my genius is pretty much unequivocated.
    To you, I suppose.

    Takes what out, exactly?

    I'm merely pointing out how Fredrico et al know pretty much nothing about the subject they're so adamantly opining about.

    I'll be the token ******* all you want, but that doesn't negate everything I know about the subjects I comment on. It should highlight everything some posters don't, however.
    Perhaps a touch of anxiety...

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    They're telling you all this in the second or two that they're passing? And you're passing it on as the bastion of information that you always are?.
    I'll just interject, I have never had a bad encounter with any cyclist out on the road, MUT anywhere. People are pretty well behaved in public, just riding imho, no matter who they are (cat 1, grandma on a trike, family with kids all over, dudes on homemade ebikes). There is a kinship in the real battle .. dealing with inconsiderate cars. Just a lot less stressful passing or being passed by a cyclist than car traffic.

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodys737 View Post
    I was riding yesterday with a very small (4) but elite group of riders. One was the 2014 US nat'l road champ and 2015 US nat'l crit champ. We had just finished a punchy hour and a half of vo2 work (at least for me) and working our way through another couple hours of tempo/SST with higher efforts on the shorter climbs. A solo rider was ahead going well up a slight incline. We tempo'd past, said hello, and just kept motoring. He looked to be laboring pretty hard when we past him and his response to our "hellos" was sort of passive aggressive. Hard to explain. A few minutes later he slowly passes us clearly all over his bike. Annoyingly, he faded and we tempo'd right past and luckily turned up a steep section where he went straight.

    You never know who is out riding, their history or why they are out riding. The guys I was riding with were not going hard for them and if they really opened it up could have dropped pretty much anyone with in a few minutes. Their tempo is my vo2 for all I know...

    Honestly, the guy we past looked to be a decent rider in decent shape. It would have been great to have him slot in and ride with us rather than try and show us how big his dick was which turned out to be not so big. Total wanker. But yeah human I guess. Or just no experience competing which is where I think a huge difference in attitude comes from. The guys that compete at a high level really don't care what you are doing. They pretty much know what they need to get done and aren't worried about drag racing some wanker to the top of a highway overpass.
    Choose your "targets," is all I could say to this "wanker." Trying to pass 4 fit looking riders going at a decent clip on a climb is very satisfying--if you can do it. If I catch someone on a climb, I know right away what I'm up against. Sure, the couple who passed right before the familiar climb were riding better than me, but they did go awfully slow up the little climb that I wax regularly in a fast spin from the bottom. Rather than lose momentum stuck behind them, I chose to pass. I even said, "I always attack this little climb!" The guy on the Pinarello, in a Mellow Johnny jersey, didn't take it kindly.

    If 4 riders had passed me and slowed to crawl like that, I would have passed them, too, but in any case, wouldn't have worked beyond what I was sure I could do. The rider who passed your group apparently was going flat out, testing his power against your group. He bit off more than he could chew, but hey, how else ya gonna get better, right? Guys who used to do that to me when I was riding faster, I usually took as a compliment. 4 guys passing doing tempo I might have tried at one time to latch onto the back, but if I don't expect to stay with them, I let 'em go. More often than not, they'd get uptight when an interloper joins, not knowing my capabilities or experience, so I generally don't do that anymore.

    You seem to be more generous inviting wankers to join your group. He found out quickly where he stood, though, right? That could be why he didn't smile and ask to ride with y'all. . Like I said, this guy was really showing respect, seeing if he could match your ability.
    Last edited by Fredrico; 09-13-2017 at 09:56 AM.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    I knew I'd get into trouble with that generalization! Forgot to mention Fuji and Giant. Fitness minded, hip, educated urban dwellers, trained up in spin classes, now putting on gloves to attack the MUTs. They're not ready to spring more than $1200 on a bike, but they still want to be competitive. They always look good.

    Around here, NVA, lots of upwardly mobile adults in their 30s-40s are into it, and you see lots of Treks among the more style conscious riders. They're no doubt a pleasure to ride.
    That's it, I'm definitely hitting the MUT for a competitive loop around Arlington on my Trek tonight; I need to be with my people.

  10. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    We in the lesser ranks could care less what these fast dogs have in their training plans. If they pass at 20 mph, they become very tempting targets for a chase. With me, it operates on a more basic, instinctive level, and requires restraint to hold off. . That's when this old dog is feeling good. Other days, I just try to stay out of their way.

    Strava? Nah. Easy enough to go by their visible signs of fitness, lean body mass, effortless cadence, and they pass everyone, never the reverse except around rest stops. They're always the rabbit and I'm the dog, salivating once again. Some riders sprint to stop signs. I chase down faster riders. Similar variable length interval training benefit. More fun, too!

    Nothing more pleasurable than once in a while, getting to be the rabbit. Knowing a rider going a mile or two faster is closing a gap behind, is about the best motivation there is. Blows 'em away when as they get closer, you slowly increase speed, so they have to work harder just as they think they've captured the prey. When they pass, you're also pumped up enough to grab their draft for a spell while they're recovering!

    This is no game to play with the big dogs, agree. We know our place and play amongst ourselves.
    All that to say you have no clue who a cat 1, cat 5, or cat 7 is.

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvber View Post
    To you, I suppose.


    Perhaps a touch of anxiety...
    Anxiety regarding what, exactly? Your responses are becoming increasingly random and nonsensical.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    You seem to be more generous inviting wankers to join your group. He found out quickly where he stood, though, right? That could be why he didn't smile and ask to ride with y'all. . Like I said, this guy was really showing respect, seeing if he could match your ability.
    Hadn't thought about it that way. Perhaps. I sincerely hope he had a good ride.

  13. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    All that to say you have no clue who a cat 1, cat 5, or cat 7 is.
    Your response doesn't help, pedalbiker. Care to fill in some of the blanks? How do you work with the other traffic out there on the MUT? We who have no clue are keen to know how the big dogs are thinking. Often we get the wrong impression.

    BTW, I raced the local club/USCF crits when lowest grade was cat. 4, so am quite aware of the increased fitness required, mental as well as physical. Used to ride 12 miles across the Potomac River to the race, did the race, and rode home. Those were the days! Entering the sport in my low 40s, I was late to the game. By age 50, I'd reached my potential, pretty much, and have enjoyed a healthy lifestyle ever since.

    No longer dream of running with the big dogs. I don't know how they do it.

  14. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    Your response doesn't help, pedalbiker. Care to fill in some of the blanks? How do you work with the other traffic out there on the MUT? We who have no clue are keen to know how the big dogs are thinking. Often we get the wrong impression.

    BTW, I raced the local club/USCF crits when lowest grade was cat. 4, so am quite aware of the increased fitness required, mental as well as physical. Used to ride 12 miles across the Potomac River to the race, did the race, and rode home. Those were the days! Entering the sport in my low 40s, I was late to the game. By age 50, I'd reached my potential, pretty much, and have enjoyed a healthy lifestyle ever since.

    No longer dream of running with the big dogs. I don't know how they do it.
    I don't train on a MUT. I can think of possibly three times in my life I've ridden on a MUT, and not one of those was during a training ride. It's not a place I would ever even think about considering to do any training.

    You still haven't explained your "impression". You're an expert on identifying a Cat 1 as they pass you on a MUT. That's essentially what every one of your posts on this thread is. But how?

    Because call me crayz but I can't roll up on a group ride with guys I don't typically ride with and just start randomly picking out cat 1s, 2s, 3s, etc., even after riding with them for a couple of hours.

    So again, what's this magical radar you possess that allows you to immediately pick out a cat 1 that passes you on a bike path and then magically decide that said cat 1 is irritated as you try passing them back? Because that's your entire premise, right?

    You must have some type of cycling voodoo!

  15. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    I don't train on a MUT. I can think of possibly three times in my life I've ridden on a MUT, and not one of those was during a training ride. It's not a place I would ever even think about considering to do any training.

    You still haven't explained your "impression". You're an expert on identifying a Cat 1 as they pass you on a MUT. That's essentially what every one of your posts on this thread is. But how?

    Because call me crayz but I can't roll up on a group ride with guys I don't typically ride with and just start randomly picking out cat 1s, 2s, 3s, etc., even after riding with them for a couple of hours.

    So again, what's this magical radar you possess that allows you to immediately pick out a cat 1 that passes you on a bike path and then magically decide that said cat 1 is irritated as you try passing them back? Because that's your entire premise, right?

    You must have some type of cycling voodoo!
    So that's not cat. 1s out there TTing on the MUT at 20+ mph? They must be pretenders in the lower categories, possibly not categorized yet, dreaming of joining the cat. 4s! These guys are brutal on the club rides. But I've never tried riding with the A group, so wouldn't know how gentlemanly the cat. 1s work together. They're always at least a minute ahead of us wannabes. So I apologize. I'm talking about a different group.

    Now that you mention it, riders can't comfortably maintain 20+ mph on a MUT, so they ride on the roads. I used to avoid the MUTs in the good old days, too. The roads are in much better shape around here. We'd meet on Beach Drive in DC and go out into the counties in MD. So yeah, its the pretenders acting like big dogs on the MUTs, not the serious racers.

    Trouble is, as DC area develops, the nice country roads are rapidly disappearing, while simultaneously new bike trails spread out across the suburban sprawl. So the MUTs get crowded with more fast guys. A few years ago, the Reston club, 30-50 riders strong, always tore along an 8 miles section going out to a loop on lightly traveled suburban roads, terrorizing walkers and bird watchers.

    I once tried to catch the B group coming back. Saw them waiting on the opposite side of the road crossing, did a quick U turn and saw how long I could hold off the pack! Took 'em three miles to catch me. I knew they were chasing: the first guy to pass almost fell off his bike and slowed so quickly I almost hit him!

    So you guys never play those games when an opportunity strikes out of the blue, outside a sanctioned race? Do tell.

  16. #66
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    "Sure, the couple who passed right before the familiar climb were riding better than me, but they did go awfully slow up the little climb that I wax regularly in a fast spin from the bottom. Rather than lose momentum stuck behind them, I chose to pass. I even said, "I always attack this little climb!" The guy on the Pinarello, in a Mellow Johnny jersey, didn't take it kindly."

    This will happen to me on a regular basis. I tend to work harder on hills than I do on the flats - I have always enjoyed climbing and feel that it is better and easier to work a little harder to get it over with than to loaf along and lose momentum. However, on the level sections I often ride at an easy cruise. What this means is that some people will ride by me on the level stretch just before a climb and then lose a lot of momentum on the uphill gradient. I am not trying to race them, but I don't like to ride up hills that slowly so I will pass them as I spin up the climb and then see them pass me by later if the road levels out once more.

    Now the strong riders will leave me behind no matter what the gradient...
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

  17. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredrico View Post
    So you guys never play those games when an opportunity strikes out of the blue, outside a sanctioned race? Do tell.
    I do all sorts of race sims on group rides in which we do race sims (sprints, koms, leadouts, etc.). But I don't try to play games with people that aren't playing games.

    That would reek of a "I don't have any idea what the intent of your ride is, but I'm going to try to make it about me as much as possible" attitude.

  18. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    I do all sorts of race sims on group rides in which we do race sims (sprints, koms, leadouts, etc.). But I don't try to play games with people that aren't playing games.

    That would reek of a "I don't have any idea what the intent of your ride is, but I'm going to try to make it about me as much as possible" attitude.
    Well, it would sure be "about me" when you're in race, right? When I pass someone and he responds by trying to keep up, or pass me back, it becomes about two riders, not just me. Easy to tell who's game and who isn't. When speed becomes unsafe, as it frequently does on an MUT, I back off immediately. The limits posted on MUTs are 15 mph for a good reason. The only vehicle that goes faster is a bike.

    The games riders play riding in a group are in a different dynamic than riding alone. Riding alone its not that hard to figure out who's game and who isn't.

    I drive my car the same way, key being situational awareness and maintaining my place in the flow. Can't stand it when stuck in a group of cars fighting tail gating each other and switching lanes to be top dog, so I try to maintain speed on the empty road in between. If I'm going faster than the pack, I try and get as much distance as I can on them, because when the front drivers see me pass, they without thinking often try to match my speed. Then it turns into a race. The lead driver gets out in front, then slows back down to the speed limit and slows the pack down. None have to guts to exceed the posted limit, although the cops almost never ticket those going up to 10 mph over the limit.

    These are problems inherent on MUTS, mostly. Riding on the roads is mostly free of traffic moving SLOWER than bike speed. I never try to latch into the draft of a passing car except in the city. . And its all for reducing the speed differentials with cars as much as possible, so drivers have plenty of time to plan their move. Much safer than not.

    Riding on the MUTs brings out similar behaviors. Very disorganized compared to a group of racers out on a training ride, so sure, racers wouldn't get into it, the cat. 1s, that is. . The wannabes are out there every day proving their worth. Good for them. Most of these riders welcome competition, IME. I never consider it a big deal. Those who do consider it a big deal are guys like this Mellow Johnny jersey on his Pinarello. They're always fun to play with.

  19. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradkay View Post
    "Sure, the couple who passed right before the familiar climb were riding better than me, but they did go awfully slow up the little climb that I wax regularly in a fast spin from the bottom. Rather than lose momentum stuck behind them, I chose to pass. I even said, "I always attack this little climb!" The guy on the Pinarello, in a Mellow Johnny jersey, didn't take it kindly."

    This will happen to me on a regular basis. I tend to work harder on hills than I do on the flats - I have always enjoyed climbing and feel that it is better and easier to work a little harder to get it over with than to loaf along and lose momentum. However, on the level sections I often ride at an easy cruise. What this means is that some people will ride by me on the level stretch just before a climb and then lose a lot of momentum on the uphill gradient. I am not trying to race them, but I don't like to ride up hills that slowly so I will pass them as I spin up the climb and then see them pass me by later if the road levels out once more.

    Now the strong riders will leave me behind no matter what the gradient...
    Exactly. A situation I face daily on the MUT.

    So much easier to attack the hill from the bottom and just keep up momentum as long as possible. And if you finally slow down, the legs are in the proper mode to hold off the burn.

    Your distinction between strong riders and lesser mortals is apt. Climbing separates the veterans from the newbies. Don't know why Mellow Johnny slowed so much and then took it so hard, probably his girl friend.

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    One funny MUT experience along these lines happened to me a few years ago. Every year the STP (Seattle to Portland, or as I call it, the Great Northwest Lemming Migration) uses one of the MUTs in my county as part of its route. I was riding a few miles of that trail as part of my ride that day. Since this was an old logging railroad bed, it has slightly more elevation changes than most Rails-to-Trails conversions - but they still aren't much in gradient.

    Anyway, I was cruising along maintaining a reasonable speed, passing a few and being passed by a few. The woman comes by, hammering along on her aero bars and then a couple of hundred yards later the gradient went up to a whopping 2%. Sure enough, she lost momentum so I went by her. A couple of hundred yards later the gradient eased and she came charging by again, then the gradient went up a little bit again and she lost her momentum once more. This happened about four times in six miles. I found it highly amusing.

    When my turn off came up I told the riders behind me that I was slowing for the intersection and turn and heard from the one right behind me "Sorry to see you go - you were setting a nice steady pace."
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

  21. #71
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    Get a cyclocross bike. Just as fast as a road bike & you can hop the curb & pass them on the grass or sidewalk. I will not confirm or deny that I do that.

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