February 10, 2009
By Julie Porter
Julie, slicing into the first turn at the Cherry Pie Criterium
We prayed for the weather to hold and it did. Like always, I love to ride in the cooler weather and with very little clothing.
I raced the 35+ category first (headed out with the 4’s). It was the largest crit group I have every been in. Somewhere around 55 ladies. I was prepared, had my race bike, and felt good. My goal was to stay in the front 1/4 and really watch the dynamics to be prepared for any surges. I used the big ring for the hill climb and it worked for me. Steady and powerful would move me up towards the front to get around the “U” turn early. Mountain bike skills help in the tight turn! Race was solid and I ended up 5th in the 35+ and came in about 12th overall. I was happy with that as I wanted to finish with the pack and have something left for round two.
Well, let’s just say I am not ready for “Bike Girl” stuff just yet. The Pro/1/2/3 group was also very large. It ended about 1/2 the size though as the riders bailed, got pulled, or just died. I hung on for dear life for 4+ laps, got dropped off the back for about three laps then finally pulled. I was not going to quit until they pulled me. My legs had something left so I plodded along in the wind.
It was great training, a safe day, and I had yummy pizza on the way home. What more could you ask for? I don’t know where I finished but it was not last! That is always a bonus.