Racing the Pink Hurricane

June 7, 2010 · Print This Article

Turn off the Giro! The Heck with the TOC…

This is what you REALLY want to hear about.

The Flair-a- licious bellas headed to the balmy breezes of Bakersfield (not the usual heat measured in Kelvin degrees). Numerous emails flew back and forth deciding who should race in which Master’s category. We ended up with Sue Lo and I in the 35+ and Monica, Cammy, Andi Mackie, and Linda Locke in 45+.

As soon as we registered the entire Pinky team registered. I think they waited to see what we were racing before they signed up. Feh. They posted on their Pinky website the Pink Hurricane was coming to town. (soon to be downgraded to a tropical depression).

Bena ITT
What can I say about the TT? Well, it wasn’t hot or terribly windy, though it seemed to be headwind all the way. I started out the 35+, with a big gap between me and the 4’s so no help there. I was testing out my new speed suit so hoping for some added fastness. In my category was the pinky girl who smoked me at Madera so I had to really pull off a good TT.

Mike Hard, the official told me at the line I did the race more times than he officiated so I could read the rules myself. Which I did.
Rode hard, kept concentration, turned around the cone, rode back, crossed the line. and, well, yeah, I won by 35 seconds.

Monica was having trouble with her front derailleur and couldn’t go from small to big, and there is a pretty giant size hill, which you can stand and stomp or go small chainring and stay aero. I told her, no biggie in the biggie, but as I was riding up in my small chainring, I was thinking she would likely kill me for the advice.

Cammy had a great ride in her group for the win.

Stage 2 walker basin circuit race.

If you don’t like sprinting this stage sucks. Bonus points every lap, and with my group of 5 and going head to head against a sprinter, I had to do some semblance of a sprint each lap, but remembering I had a big old climb waiting for me that afternoon. Our meager peleton was 2 pinkies (Avalon former national team trackie from the 80’s and Janet G nice girl gone pink) and Julie from SJBC, another top trackie.

So each lap Avalon won each sprint, and of course the finish. Of note she was yammering to Janet, go harder, lead me out blablabla, and I’m thinking she could outsprint all of us even if we had a motorcycle leading us out! Let Janet save her legs for the hillclimb.

Havila Hillclimb

We hung out for a while then moved HQ to Havila for the hillclimb. Plan was Sue and I would ride together and get rid of everyone else. Popped Avalon on the 4 mile gradual rolling climb to the toe of the climb, rounded the corner and soon it was just Sue and I. I overcooked myself and was struggling, and offered Sue to go on, and leave me to the buzzards. She paced me and eventually I recovered and rode a good tempo. We rode together, and the glory was hers at the top.

I’m still hallucinating at the top and see Sue riding around, but what happened to her hair? Did she tuck it up under her helmet…No, its Monica!!! Holy crap she was just behind us, and kicked ass in her race.

Oh, yeah, she can tell you about her circuit race but she won that too.

The hill climb moved me back into first, Sue second. We gained 2:30 over the next climb finisher (Janet).

Woody RR

After getting back about 8:30 I was cleaning up my bike, and noted a nick and an aneurism in my rear race tire. crap. Had to ride my training wheel, which isn’t too heavy, but I love the lightness of the race wheels. Oh well, I had about 4 minutes to blow to keep my lead over Janet. The road course is full of bullheads making for a flatfest.

Anyway, short warmup, bunch of rollers till the big downhill. Which I think is a blast, and love to fly down it…in my moment of funnness, there is a cat 4 girl on the ground, support vehicle in the road, so we needed to go over the center line around a blind corner. Sue went to the right around the vehicle, through the dirt, and at that point I decided it wasn’t as much fun as I thought. All riders up and rolling, though marginally terrified. Avalon caught back on at the feed zone, rode with us on the descent, but was gone after the long climb.

Merrily we rode along, this time no descending insanity, chatted on the hillclimb, tempo’d along the way, Sue told me to go for the win, at 1 K I punched it, Janet couldn’t respond, Julie had fallen off on the main climb, Sue was pretty close behind, saw the finish tape pass under my wheel.

And just as I was stuffing my lungs back in my thorax, who comes by…Monica! By a country mile she grabbed first. Holy sh*t!

It was a bella trophy and GC sweep!

Will let them fill in their tales of glory! All I know is they rode smart and savvy.

We had a lovely and successful gang. No bitchin’, nothing but support and respect and bellavelolove among our teammies (I have been on some nasty ass teams and can tell you the bellas rock).

Side note….next year Masters Nationals will be in Bend. Masters squad will be on fire! I’m working on coordinating the masters team, so let me know if you want to have some fun!

—Liz Benishin
Northern Cali

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