Tag Archives: French Broad River Classic

From the Red River Gorge to the French Broad River

There is some interesting Tour news today. You can go to any number of sites to read about it. I can’t talk about it here. I’ll just say, “Bummer, Levi, heal soon and come see us at the USA Cycling Professional Championships.”

Here is another update on the Hincapie Development Team that today will be finishing up their Tour of the Red River Gorge UCI Invitational.  They have to be super pumped right now and who knows what will happen going into tonight’s criterium.  Good job guys!

In the 91 mile road race a break of about 20 riders formed and built a two minute gap on the field.  HDT made the break.  It was Ty Magner who made the winning break and with 2K to go there were 13 of them. Unfortunately, he got detached in the sprint at the finish and was 11th.

Tyler Karnes was in the next group and finished 17th while Strad Helms (34th) and Blair Turner (51st) were in the next group.  A.J. Meyer broke a pedal but still managed within the cutoff. Aubrey Moore was ahead of him in 58th.  With the solid finish by the team, they moved up a spot to 6th in the team classification.

Of course, what might have been of more interest to them was the fact that they are sharing the facilities at the University of Kentucky with a bunch of cheerleaders who are there for a camp.  1300 of them to be exact! That could explain the look on Tyler Karnes’ (front) face in the below photo. Blair Turner is seated behind him.

Photo by Joan Hanscom

Photo by Joan Hanscom

I’m leaving today to head up to Asheville for the French Broad Cycling Classic.  I hope to catch some of my teammates participating in the time trial and then take a car along tomorrow’s route.  I hear it is super tough.

I do believe I am ready to give it a go.  Last night I went out for a ride with friends along the base of Paris Mountain. It was hard to hold back at times, but I knew I couldn’t push myself.  Just once did I get in behind Louis and unwind it a bit. Still, by the time we started up Altamont, I was feeling pretty good.

On the mountain, I simply tried to find a cadence that would allow me to keep a steady tempo.  Tyler was right on my wheel talking smack.  I just grinned to myself and keep going.  He stopped talking, but I could glance back and see his wheel right off of mine.

Then I heard him start breathing. I did my best to control my breathing. I wanted him to think I was breathing easily through my nose.  Still pacing myself I kept the pressure on him.

Then I heard him exclaim, “Pait!” I knew I was dropping him at that point.  Soon I was alone with the main group behind and only Art in front of me.  Since I wasn’t pushing it, I figured Art would be waiting for me at the top.

Well, coming around a corner near the top, I saw Art going into the next one.  By the time we reached the yellow sign that marks the beginning of The Wall section, Art and I were on the same straight.  I figured I just needed to keep the same pace and I could get him by the end.

Once on The Wall, I realized Art had picked it up a bit.  I had to stand and pick it up myself if I hoped to match him.  We went into the final pitch upward near neck-and-neck.  Finally, I inched ahead and came across the line.

The climb gave me lots of confidence going into the race Saturday.  It wasn’t my best time (13:29), but that is only a minute and fifteen seconds or so off my best.  The good news is that except for that final 20 meter push, I had kept my heart rate at a reasonable average on the climb and really did not feel I worked that hard.  I’m happy with the base of fitness I have.

My WKO+ seemed to confirm this.  The ride put my the graphs on my Performance Management Chart into positive territory.  If the chart is telling me what I think it is, I should have a good day tomorrow.

Here’s hoping! Of course, there will be a report here at LowCadence.com.

Wish I could see myself as some others do

This weekend is the French Broad River Classic.  It is a race in Asheville, North Carolina.  It is my plan to participate in the road race.

This year is supposed to be a pretty tough course.  There are supposed to be several climbs of over three miles.  The course covers about 40 miles.

I’m not thinking that much about it.  I’ve kind of changed my approach to racing.  I had started out the year trying to arrange my riding schedule around the races.  Now I am being less strict with my riding leading up to a race.

The reason is because I was starting to lose the fun of riding.  I’ve always tried to take the approach that I race to ride – I don’t ride to race.  It doesn’t mean that I don’t want to win.  It does mean that for the amount of time I ride, it doesn’t make sense to spend it worrying about the few races I attempt.

So, Monday night I put out my effort on Paris Mountain.  Tuesday night I jumped in for several laps in the 25.5 mph A group for just under 30 miles.  Thursday I want to ride with my pals.  Friday I’ll head up to Asheville and do some spinning there.  Then Saturday I’ll give it my best shot.

I’ve had plenty of people asking me if I was planning on doing the race.  They keep saying that I’ll do very well – that it is “your kind of course.”  I’m not sure how to respond.  It has been so long since I have participated in a road race, I don’t know what is going to happen.

It is more fun to think about last night’s ride.  It was a hot night at Donaldson Center.  I figured I would give it a good push for the early part and then pull off toward the end.

Things got started early.  In the first lap a group attacked.  I was coming up behind Kirk Flinte and since he had Tweeted earlier that there wouldn’t be anyone getting away, I joked with him that they were getting away and he needed to go get them.  Well, he did!

I got on his wheel with several other riders.  Kirk pulled us for a massive amount.  Then I rotated up to the front and pulled us to the tail end of the breakaway.  The usual suspects came through and I jumped on their wheels.  Not smart.  I couldn’t hang on.

I ended up helping to pull back two more breaks in the first two laps.  In the third lap I started to slip back through the field and crossed the start finish near the tail end.  Then I just took a final lap to wind down.

The way I plan to approach these Tuesday night rides, I’ll get up there in the front and try to stay with the Cat 1 and 2 riders as long as I can.  Sure, I’ll get dropped, but each time I may be able to stay up there a little longer.

Besides, it might make those Cat 4 road races seems a bit easier.