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June 2014

RR: Tennessee State TT

June 14, 2014


The TN State time trial was the first race I did when I moved here two years ago. I flew here on a Thursday, checked into a hotel in Brentwood and on Friday, went to MOAB Franklin to pick up one of my bikes. The guys gave me directions for a ride right out the door and man, it was HOT and HUMID! In the line-up in 2012, I ended up right behind Tammy so she was one of the first people I met here, and now we're on the same team! That race was fun – I was 4th in the 20K Merckyx division (no time trial equipment), riding about 17.1 mph.


Fast forward to this weekend. A lot has happened in two years – lots more work, lots more travel, a real winter (SUCKS!), buying a house, a very, very stressful fall 2013, xx more pounds, and a lot less riding the bike means I am far from the fitness I used to have (but I WILL get it back). So my goal was to just ride within myself and use my new bike (Quintana Roo tri bike). I've only had a few rides on it and no extended time in the aero position, so I was a little worried I'd be riding too much on the bullhorns (definitely NOT aero).


Chrysa picked me up at 6:00 AM and it was actually a little cool. Way better weather than 2 years ago. We drove down to Lascassas and met up with Corrine, who was doing her first ever race. FUN! They'd posted the start list and my start time was 8:25. Get checked in, pin number, get warmed up, then it was time to go line up. There was one other woman in the W55+ division and she was from Indiana. She stated 30 seconds in front of me in full-on aero gear (wheels, skinsuit, booties, etc.)

  State TT Start

Starts were 30 second intervals. Clip in, 10, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, go. I'd started too fast in the last TT, so I eased into the first mile. The course is an out and back with a slight false flat and even though it wasn't hot, there was a definite headwind. The IN gal was down the road so I rode controlled but wasn't very happy with my slow speed. In fact, I was in the small chainring most of the way. One good thing is that I was able to stay aero almost the entire time. When I got within a mile of the turnaround, the men coming back all shouted “TAILWIND!” They were right.


Hit the turnaround and clicked it into the big chain ring and coming back, I hit 22-25 mph most of the way, with a few times much higher, once hitting 33 mph. I got to the 1K to go sign and that seemed like the longest kilo ever! Crossed the finish line at full speed and then shut it down and spun around for 20 minutes to loosen up my legs.


2012 20K time: 40:09

2014 20K time: 43:55

Goal for next year – sub-40:00. 

The IN gal dusted me, but, since she's not a TN resident, I am the TN W55+ State TT Champion. Thanks to the women of Tennessee Women's Cycling Project and everyone who's drug me out to ride, to ISM Saddles and Quintana Roo. Now to do the new bike justice.

  State TT Podium




Race Report: Rockabilly Omnium


Rockabilly Ominum

May 31 – June 1, 2014

Jackson, TN

  RGP number

I hadn't really planned on doing these races since I'm vastly undertrained, but I did get 6 days in a row riding in California in mid-May and a few days prior, decided to just go and have fun. It would be a good way to get some enforced training in. W4s could either do the W4 22 mile RR or ride with the 123s in the 44 mile RR.


Friday afternoon I picked up Emily and we were off. We got to the hotel, got checked in, picked up our race packets, then met up with Kristi and Chrysa for dinner. Back to the hotel to figure out when we had to get up and leave and it was then, I had my first “What the hell am I doing?” thought.




Saturday morning we were up and out the door fairly early for our 8:00 AM road race start. It was then that I was really getting nervous. My last road race was in 2009, back when I was decently fit but just a week post-crash. Now, I was way out of shape and a lot fatter. Note to self – rectify this!


The W4s RR was 2 laps of the course, about 22 miles total. TWCP had me, Emily and Paige in the race, plus about 8 other ladies, mostly from the Memphis area. Warm up on the road, then time to line up. The first half mile was neutral roll-out (similar to Snelling for your NorCal readers), then a right hand turn and up a hill and GO! There was a little too much braking and hand signals (just ride over the small cracks please, no need to point them out) but the group stayed together. The right turn came and going up the hill, I was off the back. Well, a nice solo ride. But no, I get to the top of the hill and there is a lone rider not that far ahead! Hammer the slight downhill and catch up with her and we chat and she says, “Let's ride together”. OK by me! She was from Memphis and knew the course, so that was good. The course was flat to rolling, so I got on the front for about 80% of the time and just rode tempo. She kept commenting on how strong I was, which made me keep going.


We go by the finish line and headed out on the second loop. The hills on the neutral rollout were a lot easier when I could take them at speed (use that momentum!), but the right turn hill that dropped me the first lap got me again, but I got to the top and thought, “I don't have to do that again!” Somewhere about 2/3rds of the way through the second loop, I got a gap on my riding partner, and to be honest, I was just wanting to get finished and if I had to sprint her out for “not last”, well, the track legs were getting ready. We get to the 1K sign and I KNOW I can ride hard for the kilo, so I picked it up. At the 200m sign, I took a peek back and saw someone in blue (she was wearing blue) – CRAP! Seated sprint! I crossed the finish line and sat up and the person in blue was a Cat. 5 dude. A few minutes later my riding partner crossed the line. I thanked her for motivating me. Finished 10/11. But hey, finishing was the main goal.



  RGP TT Start

Later Saturday afternoon was a short (5 mi) TT, back on the same RR course (only the opposite direction). We'd left and went to eat, then laid around the hotel until time to come back and get ready for the TT. It was hot and humid (like 85F) and as we were hanging out at the truck, the local TV station had a reporter onsite interviewing people, so I chatted with him.


Lined up for the TT start and I took the first mile out too hard. We made a left turn, straight into a headwind. Since the TT was so short, I'd just ridden the road bike. I do wonder what my time would have been with my TT bike. I ended up sub-17 minutes, which had been my goal, but I could feel the tiredness in my legs. Again, finished “not last”. But had fun. 9/10


Back to the hotel to shower, then the team went out for dinner.




After the TT, teammate Paige was sitting right near the top of the omnium, so the team goal was to get her a high enough finish in the crit to be on the podium of the omnium (hopefully, the top step!) Our race was around 9:00 AM and after about 5 minutes on the rollers in the parking lot at 8:00 AM, I was drenched in sweat. Yes, it was going to be a hot and humid one early.


For the crit, we had a majority of the W4s field – me, Emily, Paige, Kristi, Karah, and Tammy plus Chrysa (who is officially on Team Novo Nordisk). Warmed up, did a few laps of the course – why didn't someone mention the two hills???? Lined up and we were off – up a hill. I was behind someone who had a little trouble getting clipped in, so I was off the back from the gun. I rode around solo and about halfway through, my legs started to cramp, so I put it in the small chain ring and just finished it out. The one very fun part of riding solo was being able to come down the backside hill and just rail that right turn at speed, taking whatever line I wanted. At one point in the race, I came up on the aftermath of a crash and slowed up to make sure Paige and the other gal went to the pit to get their free lap.


There was a strong headwind on the long finishing straight (and up the hill), which made it not so fun, but in the end, Paige WON, even after a crash mid-race, with Karah third and Kristi fourth. And with the crit win, she won the omnium! So a very successful weekend for TN Women's Cycling Project. 6/6 for the omnium.