It happens to every racer, bar none: getting dropped. After MONTHS of training and investment, you find yourself alone — off the back, struggling. How do you find the wherewithal to keep going, much less to be at your best? Here’s what happened to me in my second race of the season, a “C” race.
Oxford Road Race: April 24, 2016
- “C” race: training only; no wild efforts. Stay controlled
- Finish with main pack
- Immediate attack early in first lap
- I foolishly initiated a chase, and was subsequently dropped
- Finished 10th out of 14 riders
Initial post race observations
- What is it about “stay controlled” I don’t understand?
- If you’re going to try to bridge, COMMIT to it
Us “mature” riders are a stubbon lot and it’s painfully clear that I wasn’t paying attention to my own Race No. 1 notes, other than my positioning at the beginning was great. Click and watch below for all the gory details, and hopefully you’ll glean some helpful tidbits that will keep you from making the same mistakes I did.
Here’s one major tip:
Unless you absolutely positively know for certain that you have in fact been mercilessly dropped, don’t give up the attempt to claw your way back to the group.
For example, if you're riding along for 30 seconds or more and the peloton is 20 yards or so away, stomp on those pedals and drown yourself in lactic acid to close that gap now! In this scenario, you're riding along at the same pace but expending far more energy than the pack that is oh-so-near. You're not dropped... But if you stay back there, you will be.
Watch the video for more.