After attempting to race the Suisun crit, I was convinced my 2015 season was over. I dropped out of Suisun 30 minutes into the 50 minute race, unable to produce any more power in the 100 degree heat and smokey air. I chalked up my poor performance to a string of interruptions in training. The month prior to Suisun, I went to Kentucky for a long weekend to see friends, went to a conference in Berkeley and was off the bike for half a week and then went backpacking in the Desolation wilderness for another long weekend. I was not getting quality training in by any means. So after Suisun, I took the Garmin off my bike and just started to ride for fun. And I had a lot of fun in the feedzone at Winters RR on Saturday, supporting Diane and Dani. But when Sunday rolled around, I couldn’t resist racing on a course that I love and which is only 20 minutes from my house.
The Vacaville crit is extremely technical and has a great hill. You cannot ever get bored on that course. And because the course is technical, one can sit in a good position without having to fight for wheels. There are not many places on the course where you can move up, and I was pleased that on one of those stretches — the hill — my legs were feeling great. However, I still kept it conservative because I didn’t have confidence in my fitness. Diane kept it conservative because she was feeling a little pooped after the Winters race. We covered moves, kept the pace high, and generally were just going to wait until the end of the race to do things. Sadly, Diane flatted with about 1/3 of the race left, and when the mechanics in the pit went to change her wheel, her derailleur hanger snapped off. So I was left on my own and decided at that point I would be doing zero work. I had no problem staying 2nd, 3rd, or 4th wheel through the last few laps but my sprinting legs are rusty. Having rusty sprinting legs is kind of like being an impotent bike racer for me, since that’s what I do best, but I couldn’t be disappointed by my 4th place finish in the race given the distractions of the past several months. I had a blast racing and can’t wait for next year. Or next week, when I’m racing the Giro in SF.