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Olomana Road Race - Cycle

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Waimanalo, Hawaii
United States
Tradewinds Cycling Team
75F / 24C
Total Time = 1h 48m 28s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = M18-34 Cat 4/5
Age Group Rank = 2/14
Pre-race routine:

This would be the only road race I do all year after finding out I got into Kona. I had to defend my title from last year and the course is probably the safest in Hawaii as we get one full lane plus the shoulder blocked off on the highway and basically a full lane closed off in the back roads.

Bike training leading in was going well with good power, but I lacked the volume only riding 3x a week instead of 6-7x a week in normal bike racing training. Still, I was setting personal bests for power in my hill training workouts so I figured I was ready. Looking at the starting list for my division, I wasn't afraid of anyone. All guys I have beaten in the past with one military guy I didn't recognize...but he had very average results racing on the mainland.

My strategy last year was to sit in the pack and see what happens. Turns out the pack stayed together until the last lap when I was able to launch for the win during the last stretch. This year my goal was to try and break the race up early to avoid a crash. Test the field out the first 2 laps and either try to get away in a small group or possibly go solo. Winning was not the top priority rather than keeping the rubber down. I didn't want a bunch sprint finish like last year.
Event warmup:

Rode 1 lap.

It was raining in the morning so the roads were wet to start, but it showed signs of promise that it may dry out.
  • 1h 48m 28s
  • 36.5 miles
  • 20.13 mile/hr

First lap and we are pegging along pretty quick through the highway section. Jeff launches on the first climb and Wing chases. I tell everyone else to let them go as that's a suicide move considering who they are. Jeff has really upped his game this year to my surprise, but that move was just dumb and he's got a lot to learn about bike racing. They got maybe 50 yards and we reeled them in after the end of the first lap.

So we're back together for the 2nd lap and somehow I'm out in front into the headwind on the highway. Normally I'd never be in this position, at this point, but being up front was safer on wet roads and it was starting to rain again. I didn't push too hard though. When we get to the set of climbs I just mark everyone else and there's no action. But when we hit the downhill rollers Jeff attacks again...I need to talk with that guy...bonehead move again...we reel him in at the end of the lap.

Third lap is when the fireworks happen and it starts to rain again. On the first climb Bill comes around and puts a hard surge. Not an attack but just a surge to see who will come with him. Basically the move I eventually wanted to make, but not this early. I go with him and the race behind us shreds apart. I take one short pull through the downhill rollers and we finish the 3rd lap with about a 20 second gap. We agree to work together, but that didn't last long. He took a couple of pulls and on the first climb of the 4th lap he pegged me. I looked down at my power and knowing we still had over an hour of racing left I knew I couldn't hang on to this pace and my mind convinced me Bill would blow up if he kept this up. I needed time to recover and settle my HR and saw Jeff behind me about 10 seconds so I cruised it a bit to let him catch up.

Jeff and I started the 5th lap together and I could tell he was still a bit jumpy. The rain picks up again and it's dumping now. I tried to tell him to calm down and we needed to work together if we wanted to catch Bill and also hold off the guys that were chasing about 25 seconds behind. I also noticed he didn't want to take very many pulls on the highway section into the wind...not sure if he was suffering or if he was just trying to play it smart. I mean, are you already racing for 2nd? In any case, Jeff was strong on the climbs as he's lighter than me and there were a few times I struggled to hang on to his wheel but again, on the downhill rollers it was basically me in front as I wanted to get completely out of sight from the chase group.

After lap 6 we noticed that the chase group was gone and got word that we were down 3 minutes on Bill. Lap 7 I couldn't tell if Jeff was getting tired or if he was just easing up as I could see my power dropping a bit.

After lap 8 we get word the lead is down to 2 minutes, but Jeff and I are both fading a bit...power dropping even more, but I also notice Jeff is not as strong on the on lap 9, I surge ahead on the 2nd climb and put a 10 second gap on Jeff. So this is where I would test him...was he really struggling on the downhills or just sandbagging. I needed him to show his cards. To my surprise I was pulling away so he wasn't faking this whole time. I put my head down knowing I was TTing the rest of the way out. Got word the lead was back up to 3 minutes, and I knew the only chance I had was a bonk with 3 laps to go...not that I was that much farther from cramping either.

Lap 10 and Jeff was basically out of sight behind me now. I eased up quite a bit knowing I still had around 25 more minutes of riding and didn't want to blow up. I coasted and tucked a lot more of the downhills while still pushing the climbs. I knew there wasn't a pack chasing, so if anyone did catch me, I wanted to be fresh enough to put in the effort and drop them on the last stretch.

Lap 11 and I notice on the lower hairpin that Richard has bridged up to Jeff...shit...he's charging hard so I have to get my act together. My quads are starting to tingle but I'm relatively okay.

Last lap and I push the highway section hard to try and break Richard's will. Push the next two climbs with decent power and look back to see him quite a ways back...there's no way he's catching me. I recover a bit on the downhill rollers and cruise it up to the last climb towards the finish. In hindsight, I should have looked back one more time because Richard was still charging but I managed to coast over the line 7 seconds ahead of him. That would have been pretty embarrassing if he nipped me at the line.

What would you do differently?:

Ride more. I could out TT Bill early in the season but when roadies start riding 5+ times a week and triathletes still only ride 3x, that's when you start seeing the difference.

Post race
What limited your ability to perform faster:

Not enough total miles. Training power was good...but considering I was putting up similar power numbers riding twice as much volume last year it wasn't that good. Similar to swimming and running, you gotta put the volume in.

I also took each of the 24 turns very slowly...probably lost at least 90 seconds here compared to how Bill would have been taking them once the race broke up.

Last updated: 2013-08-12 12:00 AM
01:48:28 | 36.5 miles | 20.13 mile/hr
Age Group: 2/14
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
AP 195, NP 238, Avg HR 176, Max HR 191
Wind: Some
Course: 12 laps of Olomana
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence: 89
Turns: Below average Cornering: Below average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

2013-08-12 11:22 AM

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Subject: Olomana Road Race

2013-08-12 12:20 PM
in reply to: #4826933

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Houston, Texas
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Nice race, Jason!  It's so interesting to read about the tactics of road racing -- so different from triathlons, very interesting.
2013-08-12 1:57 PM
in reply to: #4826933

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Austin, Texas
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race

Nice race! 

It's fun to get a single sport, open race in every now and again, huh?  I'll probably stick with running, though, as it's less likely to change the shape of my collarbones...  Wink

Glad the rib/chest/whatever pain didn't act up, too.

So, is this it before Kona?


2013-08-12 2:07 PM
in reply to: ligersandtions

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Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race

Originally posted by ligersandtions Nice race, Jason!  It's so interesting to read about the tactics of road racing -- so different from triathlons, very interesting.

Yeah--it's a totally different world, but I can see how one can really help the other.  Very cool, detailed description. Congratulations :)

2013-08-12 2:16 PM
in reply to: mcmanusclan5

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Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Originally posted by mcmanusclan5

So, is this it before Kona?

Pretty much.  I'll be doing the Waikiki Rough Water Swim for fun on Labor Day.  It's the only part of the original Ironman on Oahu that I haven't done yet (I've done the 112 mile around the island road race and the Honolulu Marthon a few times).


2013-08-12 2:19 PM
in reply to: #4826933

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Englewood, Florida
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Pretty cool stuff, thanks for the detailed report. It is an interesting insight into a different world.

2013-08-12 2:54 PM
in reply to: Jason N

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PEI, Canada
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Great race and RR Jason, thanks!  I am thinking of doing my first road race this weekend.
2013-08-12 6:33 PM
in reply to: #4826933

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Bellingham, WA
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Nice race Jason.  I do not know much about road racing but sounds like a pretty smart move on your part to change race strategy given the wet weather.
2013-08-12 8:28 PM
in reply to: popsracer

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Payson, AZ
Subject: RE: Olomana Road Race
Sounds like you raced a smart race Jason.  Your right though, when you're only riding 3x's a week it's super tough to hang with those roadies
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