I was excited to do this race again after doing well last year in the 4′s. On paper the course doesn’t look exciting but the wind, rolling terrain and 180 degree turns make it interesting. It was cold and the weather looked threatening but we luckily it held up and we saw only a few snow flakes throughout the day. I got a short 10 minute warmup on the trainer and started toward the back of our 47 rider field. I was able to move up a bit when the lead moto took us the wrong way towards the shorter version of the course. Some people followed it for a few seconds while others including myself realized sooner that he was mistaken and turned the right direction. Eventually everyone was together again going the right way.
Last year this was probably the most difficult race I did all season. I had raced the cat. 4 individual time trial in the morning and had agreed to do the cat. 3 team time trial with my teammates Peter and Brad, who are both really strong time trialists, in the afternooon. I thought the time in between the two races would be enough to recover but I was wrong. By the time we started the team race later in the day I knew I was in trouble right after the start, my legs were burning and I was struggling up the first climb after we passed Lefthand Canyon. The rest of the race was miserable, I felt really fatigued and it was a torrential downpour while we were out on the course. Getting a good draft meant getting water sprayed all over you which made breathing difficult. Peter and Brad had to keep waiting for me and we ended up finishing 6th which was very disappointing considering how strong those two are.
I was determined to do better this year even if it meant skipping the individual race to make sure my legs were fresh so I could hang with my teammates.
This was a hard race. It was chilly with temperatures in the low 50s and the wind was blowing strongly from the west. This was a different type of course from the standard road race since it was 66% paved with the rest being dirt roads. We started with 57 riders in my category and we were combined with 43 riders in the 35+ SM3 category, so our starting group was 100 strong.
This year will be my third road season and second cyclocross season. I’m currently a cat 3 on the road and will be soon in ‘cross. I’m still a 4 in ‘cross only because I haven’t gotten around to requesting my upgrade yet, but I did get enough upgrade points last season. I could do a few more races as a 4 to see if I could sneak in a win before being forced to upgrade but I think I’d be better off and feel better getting experience in the 3′s.
This was a great race and the course was a lot more fun than I had remembered. I first did the Louisville Crit two years ago as a Cat 4, back then the small climb made me suffer and I barely hung on for a placing just out of the top 20. This year it being my first crit of the season I wasn’t sure what to expect.
It was one of the warmer days we’ve had so far this year and really windy. My objectives were simple: ride smart and finish strong.
During the last few years I’ve done a lot of road racing and last year I started racing cyclocross. To get things started on the new blog, here’s a quick review of my new Rudy Project Sterling helmet and Noyz glasses which I’ll be using for the road racing season. I’ve been using the combo for a few weeks now and I’m very happy with both.
After finally getting my first personal domain, ryanmtaylor.com and after doing websites for other people for years now I decided it was about time for me to have a blog. I’ll probably write a little about everything going on with me and whatever is on my mind. At the moment I’m gearing up for the Colorado Cat. 3 road racing season and starting the process of looking for a new job.
Here we go!