It's been over 6 months since I last blogged due to the hectic lifestyle of a college student. Actually no, it's really just that I've been extremely tentative about continuing my blog, not knowing if blogging was “socially acceptable” in college... and it definitely isn’t – but oh well, here it goes…
I have a new team for the 2010 race season. Since, I’ll be spending the vast majority of my year in California (which by the way is mind-blowing!), I’ve joined a team based out here – the Webcor AV Bridge Team. It's a “U23”, elite development team with strong ties to the Webcor Women’s Pro Team.
While being out here, I've definitely noticed how much the people take a lot of things for granted. While on an everyday training ride, everywhere you turn you’re surrounded by pros and everyone here is just so nonchalant about it like it’s “normal” (!). To your right are national champions and on your left are the former/ and current world champions. For example, I didn’t find out until after the fact but apparently I was on the wheel of last year’s USAC president and current BMC team director on a group ride the other day. And just on Tuesday, while practicing for an upcoming TTT with Lauren, I saw Cadel Evans training in his rainbow colors with a BMC sag vehicle close behind.
Besides all of the all-stars here, the other thing people take for granted is the scenery – WHEW – gorgeous. Not only are these the most beautiful landscape I've ever scene but also the terrain is so much different. The climbs range anywhere from 3 to 18 miles. Some leading to the ocean, others to large farmland, others to the city.
It's Race Season Already!
Two weekends ago, my team and I rode to Fremont where an Early Bird Crit was taking place. When I got there, I learned that for Early Birds, they combine the Womens and Mens Pro, 1,2. I just about peed my pants. While I was registering for the race, none other than Daniel Halloway was registering next to me for the SAME race. Also present were Charlie Avis of Trek-Livestrong and a few other BIG names, not to mention a few Pro women. "I'm dead meat," I thought to myself, wondering how long I’d be able to stay in the 60-minute criterium. The crit was pretty much your basic flat, 4-corner crit with some serious winds. To my surprise, I stayed in the whole time! We averaged something like 29.5 mph and I was sustaining a constant 200 bpm, (max is 216) for the whole time. It was a lot of fun! It’s funny how the dynamic of racing with men is so much different. Some of them really hate you for being in their race and don’t believe you are fit enough, while others really hate you if you are ahead of them and keep trying to prove their “physical superiorness”, and then I guess a few just don’t really care.
Anyways, this last weekend was my first “real” race of the season – Cherry Pie Crit in Napa. Tibco had a really strong team there, setting up the sprint for Brooke Miller, which they did well. Then, my teammate, Lauren, got second which was awesome! It was an aggressive, technical race with a hill followed by a complete 180 degree turn which was slowww and then downhill and some corners and through a chicane. It was saweeet to be racing next to all of these amazing women.
These races have definitely put me in a different perspective than I had all last year - now finding myself more on the defensive than offensive. Hopefully, throughout the year, I’ll be able to change that and throw some good jabs in. I already feel a lot stronger since I’ve been training in California. This is also the first time that I’ve trained in the winter, since I started last February 28, 2009 with my very first race Froze Toes.
In addition to racing on the Webcor Bridge Team, I'll be racing for SCU so that I can compete in collegiate nationals in Madison, WI May 7-9. I’ve heard that collegiate racing is a lot of fun without the “stodginess” of regular road racing so I'm hoping for a good time. I’m definitely going to be focusing much more on USAC races which I think will develop me more as a racer.
Well, off to training camp in Menlo Park for the weekend.
P.s. I have decided to change my blog’s title from having anything to do with the nickname “Kaboom” because I don’t think that the Women’s P,1,2 peloton will appreciate having a “Kaboom” in their race :D