Sunday, May 13, 2012

Incheon Rally Road Race

12 May 12-

Post TdK I had a weekend off and worked the weekend duty.  I was up to 11 days straight of work which isn't anything crazy, but I was really looking forward to this weekend as it was going to be 2 races in 2 days.  Today was the 40K RR (road race), and tomorrow would be the 22k hill climb, 9k of which would be up the climb.

I had talked to a friend of mine on what the strategy should be for today, and we have started to pick up on some things about the Korean road racing scene.  If you can get a decent gap and start to get out of reach the peloton will just shut down and assume they cannot catch you and just fight for 2nd.  So he told me to just go from the gun and see what happened.  I had JY from my team and Aaron and Luis in the field, so they could control the peloton if need be and JY would be able to win the field sprint if I could stay away.  The other interesting thing is it was grouped by under 40 and over 40, but we all started together.  There was 123 people on the entry list, but I would estimate about 80-90 people on the start line.

Once the gun went off it took me a few seconds to get clipped in but I was still out front.  Once that right foot clipped in I put the hammer down, probably a little too much as my 10s power was 888 watts.  It worked though and I opened up a small gap.  Then the first corner came and I overshot it and ended up on the opposite side of the center divider, which I think caused some more confusion to the group, but 200m up the road there was an opening in the divider and we got back over to the right side of the road.  The course had a few turns early on and that is where I wanted to try and maximize the gap and get them to think that I was going to stay away.  By the first main long stretch I looked back and there had been one guy trying to bridge but he was back to the group by then and it looked as if I had opened up a 30-45s gap, so all was going good.

Then at about 20 minutes into the race when they came at me on the opposite side of the road, it was really confusing.  I had the lead moto so I wasn't worried about me going the right way, well I mean he did take a wrong turn or two, or at least attempted to.  So at that point I knew something was wrong, either A the moto took me the wrong way, or B the chase pack took a wrong turn.  Come to find out they had taken a wrong turn, a couple to be exact.  At that point I kind of had an idea that the race was going to be screwed up, but I kept hammering away and just followed the moto.  I kept looking back on some of the straightaways and couldn't see anyone so I throttled back just a bit as I knew I had to race tomorrow.

I came to the final turn to an empty straight away and no one in sight behind me.  It was a good feeling to have won the race, but it was a bittersweet feeling as well.  I really would to of liked to know if I could of stayed off the front solo.  In the end I still took home the pay check, but they DQ'd the 1st main pack that took the wrong turns which sucked because JY had won that field sprint and put him 2nd across the line.

It was a good way to kick off the start to a 2 race weekend, and I am looking forward to the hill climb tomorrow as I think I have a good shot at the podium, 99% sure JY will be kicking my rear up the mountain though.

Thanks again to everyone for all of the support and a special thanks to the US Military Cycling Team fueled by FRS, Primal Wear for the awesome skin suit, Honey Stinger for the great nutritional products, and WATTS/Storck Cycling of South Korea for all the logistical support.

Link to ride on Strava:
Results: 1st out of 76 (123 on start list) Link to Results: Click Here
 Luis, myself, and Aaron, the guys I train with at Osan.
 Waiting for the prize $$$$$
 The traditional Korean bow and nod
2nd Win of the season!

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