Today I drove to my friend Gavi Epstein’s house. He’s only 20, a Cat-II, and racing full-on for Sakonnet next year, doing a full schedule packed with NRC races. A good gig, a strong rider. I was excited to do a long ride with him…
We rode up to the Nyack Ride, met the ride on the rode, and latched on. I felt good, just sitting in, keeping the wattage in check. We stayed in the middle of the peloton, staying within our prescribed zones. That kid has a hummingbird heart, though, so any acceleration and he’s saying, “My heart rate is 168!”
I sat in for a good while. Mike and some other riders went off the front between the two reservoirs. I gave it steady gas up the climb, then descented. I turned around and was in No Man’s Land. So I jumped ahead to the group. Once there, the peloton closed, so I jumped, giving a 60s effort. Matt went with me, and we had a nice gap, but December’s not the time of year for that type of ride, so I shut it down.
On Piermont Road, before the sprint, attacks went flying left and right. I sat in tight, riding in the peloton. In the end, it all came back together, just before the sprint! I was licking my lips. Last week, I wanted to contest the sprint but did not because of traffic! So this week I wanted to open it up. Into the sprint, I was near the front. Gavi went first. I was on his wheel, accelerating. On the climb, I sprinted hard, coming by, hoping the peloton didn’t fly by! I gassed it to the line. I turned around and had a nice gap. Usually, I get trounced in this super sprint, but I’m honing that skill (at least I’m trying to!).
Then Gavi, Mike, John, and I rode around steady. Mike turned off and we went up to the orchards, climbing steadily. Nice ride. We rode well together. Gavi was adamant about riding two men abreast, inches apart!!! Helps the pack riding skills, I suppose.
All in all, a good ride. I felt good, considering the week’s miles. My sprint numbers are getting better, and I’m trying to get better at the entire dynamic in the peloton, actually executing the perfect sprint. April is not that far away. I’ve decided that Battenkill-Roubaix, 80+ miles, is my first A race. We shall see. Hope everyone enjoyed the good weather this weekend.