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Pineapple Hill Road Race - Cycle

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Wahiawa, Hawaii
United States
80F / 27C
Total Time = 2h 03m 12s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = M23-34 Cat 4/5
Age Group Rank = 1/
Pre-race routine:

Took some additional rest days from Sun-Tues after the mountain bike race. Sunday was just because I was tired and Mon/Tues was due to working an overnight shift. Still could have rode, but I was just lazy and felt like my body was responding well to rest.

I did take the time to switch to 52/36 which I thought might be helpful for the finishing stretch at this race as we have a slight downhill tailwind section running into the finish line. Also replaced my chain in the process and everything was running really smooth on the bike. Did a semi hard ride Thursday and felt pretty good. Minor issues getting the Quarq to settle into the new slope, but by Friday all seemed good. Just a short 15 minute test ride Saturday.
Event warmup:

Just rode around for 20 minutes.
  • 2h 03m 12s
  • 42 miles
  • 20.45 mile/hr

First lap was pretty mellow. Sau and I spent quite a bit of time at the front just cruising because nobody else seemed interested at doing work or setting a decent pace. Carl and Bobby eventually would move up front but the pace was very much group ride-ish. Matt Leo would go off the front a little but nothing crazy and would fold back in after a few minutes. Sau was doing an awesome job of following my instructions not to surge and encourage other riders to do some work.

As we ended lap 1 and headed towards the start/finish and I missed my bottle feed. I started with a half full bottle and I was already empty due to the hot and humid conditions. Sau had my back though as he still had a full bottle. On the descent Cody got away a little bit but I was just sticking in the pack. If someone wanted to chase him down, it wasn't going to be me or Sau as I wasn't affraid of Cody going solo for the last 2 laps. Sure enough, he came back to us.

The start of the second climb was much the same as the first. Sau gave me a couple of drinks from his bottle which I really needed. I was okay with a sprint finish, but if we kept this moderate pace up, I was getting worried that the skinny guys would be too fresh on the last lap and could throw down a serious attack on the last lap's climb. So midway into the climb I made a hard acceleration off the front. My goal wasn't go get a gap, but just to start shaking things up and get guys to play their cards now. We all came back together shortly, but nobody counter attacked. At the very least though, I got Carl to come to the front again along with Bobby. The two other Quick Release riders continued to just sit in.

I was feeling good...and at this point I took a gamble and changed my game plan. I figured there were only about 6 players left in this race (Myself, Matt, Carl, Tim, Bobby, and the other Quick Release rider) and if nobody attacked yet, then nobody was feeling strong enough to do I attacked again with hopes of splitting the group. I got about 50 yards and noticed that Carl and Bobby were chasing. Perfect. I kept a steady tempo until they bridged and we had just crested the main part of the climb and we could work together to lengthen the gap. I knew Sau wasn't going to contribute to the chase, so it was basically 3v3 and I liked my odds.

I encouraged Carl and Bobby to work together with short pulls through the rollers and they obliged...but I could tell they were not as comfortable as I was. After I got my bottle at the feed to start the last lap I they were having trouble keeping up. I slowed a little as I felt I still needed their help. But as we descended for the last time, gravity of my fat ass took over and I opened up a gap. I got to the bottom corner with a 200m lead but decided to ease up a tad and let them chase me down not only so I could work with them, but to give me a little time to let my HR settle while theirs would still be on the red line as we started the last climb.

We got back together and did some good rotations. I could tell Carl was struggling as he missed one turn but I kept encouraging both of them that we needed to go all in as the chase was in sight...around 60-70 seconds back. At this point, I figured I was going to either have to go off solo, or let the chase group catch us and try to win in a sprint. I liked my chances either way, but when you're racing Cat 4/5, there's always a chance you can get washed out heading into the line because someone does something stupid. So I figured the time to go was on the last kicker just after the false flat. I surged just a hair hoping one of them would come with me to work with me through the rollers, but they both dropped off. Within a few minutes I had a 100m lead.

I still felt good. Pushing around 260-280 watts but my HR was pegged in the upper 180's. Normally it never gets that high unless I'm really throwing down on a steep climb...but the legs were responding. With around 4 miles to go, and just rolling terrain left, I had Phil Ligget's annoying voice in my head saying how I'm turning myself inside out...blah blah blah...LOL. I was 98% sure I had it in the bag but I didn't want to leave anything to chance in case I somehow crashed in the last corner or something.

I looked back a few times and noticed it was only Carl chasing as Bobby had got dropped which increased my chances as Carl would have to bridge solo...but I still knew that the chasing group likely had 4-5 guys in it, and if they worked hard together (even if unlikely) could make up a minute or so on me. They were nowhere in sight, but I just kept the hammer down. HR drifted up to around 195...which is pretty crazy as I was on pure adrenaline. I did manage to back off a hair though as I didn't want to cramp up for no reason.

I took the last corner carefully and it's just a 1 mile straight shot to the finish. With 500m to go I looked back and Carl was just making the last corner. It was a done deal. This is only my second road race win, but the last was so close at the line I wasn't even sure I won. This was nice to be able to sit up and smile, point to my team name on the front of my jersey and give a double thumbs up for the camera.
What would you do differently?:

Maybe start with 1.5 bottles and opt to pick up the 2nd bottle on either the end of the first or end of the second lap. Other than that, I think I made the right moves.
Post race
Warm down:


What limited your ability to perform faster:


Profile Album

Last updated: 2014-07-14 12:00 AM
02:03:12 | 42 miles | 20.45 mile/hr
Age Group: 1/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Avg HR 175, 195 max, Avg Power 228, 251 NP, 857 max
Wind: Some
Course: 3 laps of Pineapple Hill. 14 miles and just over 1000' feet of climbing on each lap.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 88
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

2014-07-14 7:23 PM

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Subject: Pineapple Hill Road Race

2014-07-15 4:06 AM
in reply to: #5025705

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PEI, Canada
Subject: RE: Pineapple Hill Road Race

Congratulations Jason!  Great job sticking to your plan at the first and adapting as required later on.

2014-07-15 11:07 AM
in reply to: #5025705

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Guilford, CT
Subject: RE: Pineapple Hill Road Race
Great work Jason!
2014-07-15 12:21 PM
in reply to: #5025705

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Houston, Texas
Subject: RE: Pineapple Hill Road Race

Nice work, Jason!  I appreciate reading all the strategy that comes into play in bike racing.

2014-07-16 9:42 AM
in reply to: ligersandtions

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Austin, Texas
Subject: RE: Pineapple Hill Road Race

Well raced!!!  Congrats on a not-even-close win - no doubt about who crossed first this time!

Amazing to read how you approached the race.  So much to think about (especially when you're redlined) - awesome job and terrific write-up.

And way to punish the skinny guys!  


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