My teammates took 2nd and 3rd in our Cat4 race, and 4th in the masters-35+ Cat3/4. Awesome. I am happy that they have performed, and expect that they will be upgrading soon.
Yet, seeing/writing as how this blog is all about me... I think I should focus on my performance and result.
You know that feeling... how it feels like to be left out? - that's how it feels from this race. I was left out, and nowhere did that feel most pungent than during the post-race discussions about how good your form is and how good you are right now and how good this teammate or that teammate is .. those comments were not directed at me, nor should they have been. Don't feel sorry. Get away with that. No one congratulates, commends, or cares about my mid-pack finish - least of all me. No one cares that I was boxed-in, that I still had matches to burn, that I still felt strong during the sprint, or that the 'yellow-line rule," slow race pace, dodgy braking from other riders, or moto-ref all may have combined to keep me front doing anything to move up. No one should bend an ear to listen to my post-race recap of the final meters and how I "felt strong," "finished strong", and avoided all the near crashes for a false opportunity at a result because of this or that, and everything else. No one cares how you feel stronger this year than you did last year.
I hate excuses. They are worthless.
Thus, my race day ended up worthless. I will not waste your time explaining each of the four laps in great detail, but they followed a fairly expected path:
- Lap 1: Slow pothole orientation with a heaping side of moto-ref horn-blaring - the hills were easy - I've seen these road before.
- Lap 2: Less slow with more of the moto-ref mating call to each and every road without a center-line - this moto-ref is an ass.
- Lap 3: Some found it fast, I found it expectedly paced. Any breakaway, I knew, would be caught and I was glad for finally having a faster pace to this lap. The moto-ref was enjoying his authority to relegating about 1/3 of the actual offenders to the "yellow-line-rule" he so passionately pursued - which is why riders kept blatantly doing pissing all over that rule.
- Lap 4: I was focused, but expected and actually hoped for worse. For half the lap I thought the moto-ref had taken a back-seat to let the race pan out as it may, but he kept his necessary-annoyance known, and "nowhere to go" is a lock-in unless you are in the top-10 from the final turn even though I apparently inflated my final placement after the team's excited post-race chit-chat. Honest mistake, guys. I know I was better than some, but obviously not as good as I thought today.
Needless to say, my race finished with a terrible top-20. I usually leave right after finishes to these races, but I stuck around to try to soak up some of the good vibes from the WWVC results (not to mention the next wave of racers lined up right behind my car so I was stuck for the next half-hour regardless). As annoyed as I am at myself, I was happy to see my teammates enjoying their results. I decided to hang around the registration/results paddock, yet unfortunately, I was well out of place. Honestly, I did not belong with the top finishers - even though they were teammates of mine. Through no fault of their own, I had teammates talking about how good the team was, looks at me and exclaim.... "oh and that you're am a good sprinter sometimes too." Yeah... I needed to go.
That is what happens when you get complacent. That is what happens when you get lazy. That is what happens when you lose discipline, control, and self-confidence.
Complacency is a virus.
I am sick of letting myself down and hanging on to this if I am just going to tell the same story over and over again no matter how "strong" I feel.
The only truly good thing about today for me is that my car did not fail after having me run it on "zero" gas for miles on end until my gps could get me to a gas station. I need to get my oil changed, a tire replaced, and apparently a brake replaced... I smell exploitation from a grubby gas station, no?
Tomorrow looks to be a solo ride.
Thanks for reading.