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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Ready for the crit? Not Rhett

Last night I wanted to ride, but couldn't decide if I wanted to go to Donaldson Center or try riding intervals of Rhett Street. I contacted my friend David and asked if he would like to ride and which one he would go for. We decided on Rhett.

The idea was to do intervals of Rhett Street in preparation for the crit in October. I figured that the street would be where you would make it or break it in the race. If I could get used to riding it and find the best rhythm for the stretch, I would have a better chance of making my first race a success.

It didn't happen. David and I arrived and there was much more traffic on the street than I thought there would be. Plus, I had overlooked that Augusta Road cuts across Rhett Street and we would have to stop every time we got to that point. Rhythm? What rhythm?

Okay, so not all is lost. I figured that I could practice that turn off of Camperdown onto Rhett. It is a sharp left turn directly into a short climb of 20 yards or less. I tried it a couple of times, but it wasn't worth it. It is such a blind turn that I could see myself coming around the turn and end up on the grill of car!

The only way to pull this off is to go out there real early in the morning and ride before there is traffic. Even then, I don't think it would be close to replicating what will happen during the race. At least I have some idea of the topography of the course. I can find safer places to work on those elements.

We ended up going to Cleveland Park and riding and riding for an hour or so. I guess we should have gone on to Donaldson Center instead of trying Rhett. Oh well, you live and you learn.



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