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Tour of the Catskills
Percy participated into the Tour of the Catskills 3 day stage race.
I took a good number of photos after my race was done each day, click the thumbs on left for more. Enjoy those -- let me know if you like to get full access to original images -- find/contact me via FB to get your access, seams about everyone is there!
Friday afternoon the prologue in form of a individual time trial started the race stage one. I felt in good and strong condition, even not having done much TTing at all this season. Put a little extra thoughts into optimizing the bike setup and taking full advantage of my latest toy, a power tap....[click read more]
Having collected enough data from intense training rides and races I had a pretty good idea of what power I should be able to hold -- but you never know your exact race day's performance until the day of true's comes. In numbers I had a to day best baseline of 260 Watts @ full 30min -- measured, not extrapolated or such. Per "theory" I should be able to put in a good 280 Watts. However -- I did my best and stuck to my goal not to let the current 30 second average reading drop below 250..260 Watts how much it ever may hurt -- I knew I should be able to sustain. And still I was able to get out higher power to nearly maintain speed over the rollers and give it all for the uphill finish.
In numbers 258 Watts average. 1:15 down on the best time in my field Cat 4B, place 15.
With this strong showing I was really happy looking forward to two more great days of racing.
The Devil awaits... this stage was pretty much strait forward and easy. The field stayed together all the way and was easy going -- possibly afraid of what there was to come at mile 55! At Feedzone 2 I was receiving two bottles of water from Paul (THANKS Paul!!) in a simple plastic shopping bag due to the lack of finding a proper musette bag last minute I had to struggle a few moments hands free organizing my bottles, stowing one still tangled up in this bag in a rear pocket for now. Yikes, a gap as the field moved on, but no big deal catching up after a few turns -- good. While moving easy on this big road Rte 32 I took one more chance to untangle this bottle and plastic bag and put it into the bottle holder properly. Just all set up in time for the devil ;-) so not attacks happening, great... until hitting the Devil's Kitchen. I moved a bit up to the front part of the pack while approaching the Devil and switched into my climbing mode and gears -- C11 Compact + 12-27 did just fine for me. On the way up I kept passing riders. Some even walking... Towards the KOM a huge gap behind myself and just a hand full of riders ahead in sight. I spotted a escape group of 3 riders and a few stragglers of other fields. I tried to catch up, but on my own I did not manged to get them. A little drizzle started and turned into steady rain on the last 5 miles -- actually feeling pretty good. Three or four riders came up on me and we pushed to the finish, two got dropped off again. Finishing 12th on stage 2, GC 16.
Back home. That drive back was annoying and stressful, worse than racing -- traffic jam on 87, moved over to the Taconic via 84, moving OK but all the way but congested crowds.... and terrible weather on Western LI, ugly but not wet out here -- got sweaty unloading all the stuff...
Ah well, there was also a race stage 3 today, almost forgot.... was kind of brutal, two major climbs with countless steeps and rollers in between -- this totally broke the race up, even longer story to be written.
Starting out neutral, fine. From mile 3 I was some where mid/front half of the field as a small break took off, it took me some time to get out and in front of the pack w/o crossing the yellow line plus bad rough road there.... I tried, got about 1/2 way up to the break as an incline started and I felt not comfortable that early to waist such energy and dropped back into the field. That was pretty much wise as the break fall apart and I think except one rider all got back in. A long fast downhill on big road 23....
then nice rolling roads but many steeps and kickers leading to the major big climb -- a good one. On the way up there a few steeps splintered the field quite a bit up into pieces and I be leave I managed to get back into the 2nd or 3rd small chase group -- may be 10..20 riders up ahead, not exactly sure.
At mile 30: Feedzone!! I got my bottle from Paul, all set. Moving nicely in a good small group with about 1 minute down on a I think small break away. Thanks Paul Coluccio for the water support + info about the gap -- 1 minute down!! Shortly after that stowing away my water I dropped/jammed my chain on the next incline and needed to get off teh bike to fix it. OK, not big deal... chasing back on -- almost there -- ping ping ping, what's that?!??! then Pffffffff -- jikes. Broken spoke (snapped in parts almost in the middle -- SAPHIM issue?? I heard some rumors.) on the rear wheel plus I think a related flat. However, the wheel car was right there and that swap worked pro like, they got my wheel ready as I just had mine off --- big thumbs up!!! However, my group was gone. I tried... but did not worked but a few riders of the next small bunch got to me. We, mostly me... kept chasing one rider from Danbury Audi stayed with me until the finish, we dropped all the others attempting to tag on ;-) With about 15 miles to go a road looking so familiar came up on us -- Airport Road. You know it, good. No? It's just one more feature to get some riders off there bike for no obvious reason -- but the grade... I new it and I knew I cleared it a year ago with that gearing I had now on my spare -- 11-25. And so I did this time again. Then just keep it moving, a endless set of rollers and a set of great downhills -- pushing it to the finish together with Lorenzo from Team Danbury-Audi.
Hard, hot, but great race -- a real race -- no kiddin around circles.
Or simply put: survival and minimizing time loss today.
Coming in still on 21st position, keeping GC 16.
However -- a really exceptional race and great long race weekend. Also big big thanks to all the great organization, support and volunteer people -- just every one and thing was outstanding!