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  1. #1
    Hello from the islands!
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    First Race - Questions

    Hello from the islands! I decided to do a road race a few weeks ago put together by a local cycling group. I think I want to do more.

    I've mainly been trail riding in the past 6-8 months (on my cyclocross). I know I have a lot to work on in terms of training, nutrition/ hydration, bike set up (slapped on skinny tires on an otherwise original 2007 Bianchi Volpe setup ), etc. but the race was so fun!

    The race was 3 undulating loops on the road (no steep hills) that (someone told me after the race) was 30 miles in total distance. It had a bit of headwind going north. The fast group formed up ahead of me; I was in the back with the slower riders. There were 17 riders who finished ahead and 5 riders who finished after me (small group, yes). It looks like the riders in the peloton finished at about the same time - 1:31 while I finished at 1:45.

    Given that the main peloton was bunched up at the finish, and (maybe 8-9) riders may have had the same finish time within 1:31, what would be the best race strategy? Is it to stay with the pack and break away towards the end? Or (if someone was fast enough) do you go out fast and maintain the lead in front of the pack for most of the race?

    I am still learning and am very appreciative for your advice. Thank you, all!

    Island Volpe

  2. #2
    Token Sprinter
    Reputation: RaptorTC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    It really depends on what your strengths are. For example I know its in my best interest to try to sit in the pack and go for the sprint at the end. However, I have teammates that are really good at long sustained effort that are more suited to trying to win it in a break away with a few other riders. However, trying a solo break probably isn't wise unless you're way stronger than everyone else, and even then your chances aren't great since most fields in beginner races are really antsy and pull breaks back really quickly.

    I realize that isn't exactly helpful if you haven't discovered your strengths, so I'll give some simpler advice. In the next race just do everything you can to stick with the lead pack and plan things out from there. Once you're in the moment you'll have a better idea of what your legs can do and you can plan further from there. Once you get a few races under your belt you'll start getting a better idea of what works for you.

  3. #3
    Hello from the islands!
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Thanks, RaptorTC.
    Your break down makes really good sense. Happy riding!

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: DocRogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Good advice given to me at one time: Don't get dropped.

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