Thursday, June 28, 2007

East Coast Part I



Ok... more details! I just had so much fun these past couple weeks, I need to share.

After arriving in the middle of Wednesday night/Thursday morning in Trexlertown, PA, my first race was Friday night. For those who don't know, Trexlertown is a small town in the middle of nowhere. The main attraction for all the surrounding towns is the velodrome which draws 1,000+ fans for the Pro races. For cycling... in middle of the US... it is awesome!

Friday night was the Keirin Cup. Sprinters from around the world came to T-town to race. On the men's side, the fields were deep with names from around the world. On the women's side, there were a couple international competitors. The biggest name of them was Christine Muche, the German National Champion in the keirin and sprints... oh, and, the 2006 World Champion in the Keirin. What have I gotten myself into? I have not even raced any local track races this year and I am about to get on the track with a World Champion in her event? Has someone given me a lobotomy? Well, the good news is I made the finals. There is something to be said about this. The bad news is that I missed my move in the finals and ended up 6th. I got the cobwebs out and felt good about gaining some confidence back on the track.

Racing ended super late on Friday and it was hard to wind down. So, at about 12:45am Saturday morning, I was still up playing on my computer... reading Cycling News, stalking people on their blogs... you know, the usual. I got a phone call from Anna Lang (Anna enters stage right in what will become the next 1.5 weeks of cycling fun!) explaining that she just heard through the grapevine that there was a NRC crit in Arlington, VA on Saturday (now today). We dicovered this was only 3.5 hours away... so what the hell! I am in!

I pick Anna up at 7:00am and we are off. We get to Arlington, VA only to discover that it is really Washington D.C. O.K... blonde moment. (no offense Heather and Betsy) We were in D.C.! Look- the Washington Monument... that was our first cule.

While warming up, I hear my name called. Hmmm... Anna is right next to me... who is that. Bunny! Seriously? Bunny is here from West Virginia! Who knew? It was so cool to have a teammate in a race unexpectantly.

All was good in the end... Bunny was 20th and in the money for her first NRC crit!! Notice how excited Bunny is to pick up her money... this is old hat to the Aaron's girl.I can't even believe she was nervous. Girl has some skill. I ended 4th and was pretty damn happy. I did learn a lesson though. As we approached about 250 meters to go, I was sitting on Laura VanGilder's wheel. Two girls started to squeeze me, one of either side of me... trying to get Laura's wheel. I hesitated and missed the jump. From now on- Cari does not hesitate. Cari will stick out here elbows and act like a sprinter. I didn't let those girls on the wheel but I missed Laura's jump. UGH. Anna, who I will now call super-fast-cool-girl came in 2nd to Laura in a photo finish. Final: Laura V 1st, Anna Lang 2nd, Rebecca Larson 3rd, Cari 4th.

After the race, we were talking to some of the other girls and found out there was another crit with big money in town. It wasn't a NRC but all the same girls were going to do it. Bad news- Anna and I brought no extra clothes, toothbrush, etc. Good news- we don't care because we are having a blast driving around racing our bikes.
I made a couple phone calls and found a place to stay in Annapolis which was about 45 minutes away. Check out the sweet pad where we stayed! The woman who owns this house is my step-mom's best friend for 30+ years. What tops off the cool factor for the whole weekend was that my step-mom was flying in that night to see her friend. Fate! So, Anna and I chilled in this sweet house on the water and got to hang out with family/friends. Nice!

Sunday's crit was at RFK Stadium and it was blistering hot! I barely warmed up because I was afraid of getting dehydrated. You can see what Anna was doing to warm-up. I won't be long in my race report and will skip to the fun part. The race director announced there was 4 primes in the race; I had decided not to go for any and save my energy for the finish. Today, I was going to make the podium! Well, my competitiveness got to me and in the 3rd prime I found myself on Laura VanGilder's wheel. She was going for it... crap. That means I need to go for it. I found myself in an all out sprint against Laura. Nice... won that prime! We took a look around and realized we had such a gap on the field that we started working it. My problem was now that I was totally blown. Ok, I may have a sprint but now I need to recover. I think after a couple minutes, Laura knew I was not going to be much help and she attacked me. Yep, you can have it Laura... I am in the hurt-box. I made it peacefully back to the field- which basically means my arse got shelled and I caught my breath while waiting for the field. Anna bridged at one point up to Laura but ended up joining us again in the field. I think we might have been more fun. Or, maybe Laura is just super strong and blew Anna off her wheel too. Well, the plan didn't stick because I ended up going for and winning the 4th prime too- with 3 laps to go. Not smart. I didn't feel great going into the last sprint and messed up the last corner ending up 6th. Laura finished solo for 1st. Anna took 2nd in the field sprint, Rebecca Larson took 3rd again.

This is me with my step-mom, Sherry.

All in all... fun weekend of racing with super-fast-cool-girl Anna. It makes me want to fullfill my dream of having a RV to drive from race to race. Any takers? Who wants to join me?

Cari

3 Comments:

Anonymous dq said...

WMMB needs to buy us an RV!! You can drive it, Cari. Just pick us up at the airport. :) Nice job on the races!! You didn't tell me you got a spring from LVG!! Wooooeee, remind me to lead you out next time. Can't wait for superweek. Thanks for the fun update and good job racing!!

3:46 AM  
Blogger KatE said...

Cari!
I'm down with the RV. Do I need to get my CDL??? Perhaps we can hire someone to drive us around... a driverboy/mechanic... (kinda like a pool boy, but for our RV...).

Great race reports- super encouraging.

~kate

10:23 AM  
Anonymous dq said...

what is a cdl?? Cook/driver/laundry dude? I'm up for that. Someone please do my laundry!!! I'm trying to keep my house clean for realtor and it's killing me. I'm dying to make a mess!! Oh, but I digress. Yes to the RV!!

1:39 PM  

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