Saturday, January 3, 2009

How do you recap 5  days of racing without boring everyone?  Briefly... in incomplete sentences and grammar that would insult most people.

The days were all pretty similar but just different tracks.  Wake packing your bags for the 10 hours at the track...Kelyn made and packed dinner for all of us because no restaurants are open in these small towns past breakfast...more coffee... share the one computer with internet... listen to my sick house mates coughing... pack car... eat a couple hours to a new track... find out where we will be sitting all day/night...start the 10 hours of warming up/racing/cooling down.

Burnie track.  It was so cold.  So cold. 

A couple fun notes about the Carnivals- the numbers they give you everyday go around your waist with velcro, are thick plastic, and just flap out in the wind.  I hated them the first day because they are huge and just flap around but by the last day I loved them.  They are so much easier to use with no pinning and everyone has the same flapping problem.  They print a huge program everyday- gives the history of racing at that track including who has won the big races dating back in the 1930's, lists all the riders and their numbers, the program of events with their very specific time and they pretty much stick to the schedule within the minute, advertisements, all the heats and handicaps, etc.  The kids in each town line up around the track and want high fives every time you ride by.  There is lots of down time, lots of warming up again, lots of looking for empty rollers, lots of planning when you should eat/drink/go to the bathroom/etc.  I was told not to worry about race wheels- whatever.  I may have been the only Elite male or female to race on heavy old clincher training wheels.  

This is the only day we got to set our camp up inside... so much nicer.  I guess that is what you get for being the first athletes to show up in the morning.  

Racing went well and I started to figure everything out by the end.  Australian style racing is different- different races and a different style.  Each day for the woman consisted of 2 handicap races (1 big money/longer distance one and one shorter race), a scratch race and/or points race.  The points race was always the UCI event for women.  The men's UCI events were the sprinting events- keirin, team sprint, sprints.  I wish the women could also have sprint stuff but I enjoyed showing that this sprinter actually has endurance also.
In the beginning of the week I was worried about not making the finals in the events and occasionally landing a podium position.  By the end of the week I was deciding how to make the final with the least amount of energy spent, coming up with a good strategy for the finals, landing the podium consistently, and enjoying the endurance races.  The last day was the best one for me- 1st in scratch, 1st in points, worked for a "team" that landed 3rd in the big money handicap.  Collusion in the handicap racing is fun!
My friend and host back in Melbourne said he received the race reports from someone in Tasmania that told him I was "one of the top 3 females" for the week.  Nice.

This is me taking a solo flier in the points race.  I don't think they thought a sprinter would stick it out there alone... but I did... and I won!

This is my quick report.  I have lots more to write but need sleep.  Today I got off the boat from Tasmania, repacked all my belongings at my old host house, caught a cab to the airport, didn't get on the flight I wanted, rented a car, came back to the host house, slept for 5 hours, and now I want to go back to sleep for the night.  More in the morning!  Cross your fingers that I make tomorrow's flight back home!

1 comment:

JT said...

Wow Carri - that looks amazing! Thanks for sharing. Happy New Year!