Monday, July 30, 2007

Womens Racing 101

Okay, you all are sick of hearing about our racing, so now it is time to work on your own race stories and blog entries. Come join us and have a little fun!!!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Superweek: Day six | Whitefish Bay

It felt a little like the last day of summer camp after racing with everyone for the last week. Familiar faces chatted pre-race, promised to exchange contact information and laughed about how our nerves had been gone for a few days. My heart rate at the start line had gone from 125 (first race) to 77 (today).

I did get to do my first "call up", where they announced the overall series leaders and we got to roll up to the line first (and could pick the best spots). That was kind of cool. Then it was down to business and we started off at a good pace. I really didn't know what to expect from everyone; there was brief conversation about attempting a break halfway through, so I tried not to do too much work before midrace. Not too much happened until a girl took a flyer and NO ONE chased. Before long she had a 20 second gap and I knew I didn't want to get second place to her for lack of effort. Rae, my new friend from California, started to rally some troops and we worked to bring it back. I had done more work than I wanted, but didn't want to go out today not having worked.

After that, there were a few attacks, I bridged to one, but quickly conceded, since the trailing pack was close on. I don't think anyone wanted much to get away today. Deep breath. OK, back in and recover for the finish. Some spark was missing in me today, I guess. With two to go, I found my wheel again (same Flatlandia rider that had now won 4 of the 5 races). And then Amanda Miller (Atlas) came along and I thought that was OK, too. Sitting third on bell lap the pace was not nearly high enough to stave off a hungry pack on the LAST day. I knew there was an attack waiting to happen and watched for it. It came on the long back stretch and I was quick to latch on. As soon as Flatlandia came over and got on, it stalled the pace leveled and again, all the chasers in the back who were still gunning surged up and going into the third turn we were A LOT more bunched up than I wanted to be. On the quick stretch before the last turn I completely lost my head in the surge that was happening. I also lost about 12 positions. Yikes! I panicked and made up a bit of ground before I hit the turn (in which I had intended to be 2nd or 3rd wheel). That was my race. I lost it in some random 100 meters a quarter mile from the finish. I lost it in a blur of panic. My wheels rode off to first and second place. I managed to mitigate the damage by passing a few people in the 300 meters I had left. I managed to hang on to 8th.

That was not the way I wanted to finish up but in the end, it didn't hurt my overall standing and I still finished 2nd in the Omnium. Still, I get to think the whole 6 hour drive home about how I should have jumped earlier. How many times have I said that this week? It's just that I would rather have gotten 8th place by making it a guts race and taking my chances. I would rather have made 7 people pass me rather than me being a big chicken.

What a week.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Superweek: Day five | Brewer's Hill

The key word here seemed to be "hill". On the fifth day of racing it seemed like the key word in the pack was "survival". OK, so that was my plan. There wasn't a whole lot of aggression in the group that morning as there was only one or two attacks that quickly got soaked back in.

Road conditions weren't the greatest, either: potholes, manhole covers, gutters, grates and divets kept everyone cautious and heavy on the brakes through turns. An uneventful hour of racing (thank god!).

With 5 to go, Carrie yelled at me that the race was to the last corner (implying that whoever got there first would stick with it for the finish). I stayed safe and quiet and got on my wheel with two to go. Bell lap went as expected and I chickened out in taking the last turn (at the bottom of a long, bump-ridden downhill) and conceded to sit second behind the series leader (who'd won 3 out of the 4 races so far).

Her record would improve and her overall lead on me would grow as I just couldn't get around her on the last climb. Damn.

One more day. (thank god)

Superweek: Day four | Kenosha

Day four course brought in some fresh legs for the weekend. Unfortunately, those fresh legs didn't help much in working to cover a break that started early and stuck for 44 laps. Four or five laps in an attack through the start/finish caused a crash that forced all but three riders to brake and swerve. That split second and the hesitation of the wary pack in the next 100 yards gave the break a handy gap that they never let go.

We quickly started working, recognizing the week's overall leader was charging in the break; but the lack of consistency and organization saw the gap growing to 20 seconds. Finally, four of us got our heads together and started eating away at the seconds. I think we were down to about 12 seconds when the break caught onto a lapped rider. (This part is unverified, but I've had several witnesses say that rider took some pulls on the backstretch for the break). All I know is that our consistent, brisk pace that was gaining saw our gap growing again. I kept driving the front with a few others and got attacked just after a pull. I saw some fresh legs come around and the girl on the front yelled at her for not working, and quickly got on her wheel. Whoever was in front of me took inventory around her and let the gap get out of quick reach. I knew I just lost my train to the break and I felt helpless about it. I was in denial, thinking we'd use them as rabbits and eventually could bridge to the break; but that small bridge attempt took one of the pack's hard workers and the chase was again too unorganized to answer.

At that point I conceded to be racing for 6th place. I heard the 30+ second gap announcement and told myself to sit in. 21 laps to go. I took a few more pulls, covered an attack or two. Tried to initiate one and quickly got swallowed up. I was tired and spun and was starting to worry about my finishing sprint capabilities. I was thinking about a break attempt with three to go and was trying to pool together with the girls I'd been working so well with. No dice. I committed to sitting in with 10 laps to go. No losing my position to the 20 or so racers who'd been happy to ride along in the back. I stayed in the front 10 and with three laps to go sat third. On bell lap, the riders were spread across the road--no one wanted to pull that last lap. Finally a good effort was made and I was sitting third, then second behind a girl hitting a good enough pace to string it out.

I hit my gas at the last turn and gave it all I had all the way to the line. I kept my eyes on my bar and watched for a wheel that might come around me.
None did and I hung on for my 6th place finish--winning the field sprint. Small, silver lining to my gray cloud of a race. Too much I wish I could go back and do.

Two more days.

Superweek: Day three | Sheboygan

It was raining when we left Milwaukee, but we were optimistic it would clear up along the 50+ mile drive to Sheboygan. It did, for the most part; but we warmed up to the sound of thunder...Three top 20 finishes today for the team. Siobahn, Ekaterina and I all hung in through relentless attacks to the finishing sprint. Rhiannan's time is coming and we're gunning for her to hang on tomorrow. We all know what it's like to see a three foot gap, turn into five, ten and then you're off the back. It's a split second decision that gets harder to make the more you're hurting.

It seemed like every lap had a rider off--never much organization, but required consistent chasing. I once bridged to a Mercy rider and we worked for a bit, and gladly let a third (Comedy Central) rider take a turn pulling. I thought we had a promising gap, but turned out that they'd trailed on the last bridge and had strung it out to catch up. At least they're taking us seriously.

That was my first "attack" ever in a race, or at least my first whole-hearted attempt to get in a break. It's a bit scary, there's a certain amount of vulnerability and gambling involved. How much do I give? How hard will they chase? If they catch me, can I get back in and recover? What if they counter my attack and I have to suffer to hang on to the pack?

I went into today's race fairly blind. I rolled up to the start to find my HR monitor had lost its signal (needs batteries, I think) and my bike computer magnet wasn't lined up. I had no idea of my speed or HR effort and after training for so long with it, I found it a bit hard to gauge myself...I don't think it hurt me, I don't think I would have done much differently but it would have been nice to know what the speed the pack was holding and chasing with and what I needed to push to stay off the front. I looked down at my speed, only to find out that it was apparently 12:47pm. Not helpful. Damn.

It started raining with two to go...just big, slow drops at first and then a steady rain that made it very difficult to see on the last lap. I was sitting third heading through the start/finish when they rang for the "bell lap". The overall leader was pulling and was followed by a 16 year old that WAS NOT going to go around to do any work. So, the Flatlandia rider took us around the course in the rain at a good steady pace. The combination of pace and rain stifled any attacks on the back half, which surprised and pleased me. I jumped on the small rise just after turn 3 (of 4 turns). We all stayed in formation around the last turn, even though I made a decent attempt at getting past the leader in the corner. She squeezed me out and I had to feather my brakes. That move left me a big gap to cover in about 200 meters and I just couldn't ever get it. A couple more inches would have given me second place (Photo finish!). Oh well, a podium's a podium, right?

I should have jumped just BEFORE the hill. I waited too long, I think. Live and learn. All in all, yay for today.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Superweek: Day two | Greenbay

XPLANE Team Revolution had two top-ten finishers today! Woohoo! Me in 6th hole and our 16 year-old "composite rider," Siobahn Jones hung on strong to sprint for 9th. That rocks! I also saw my personal highest heart-rate in the sprint. 194! If not for that, I'd be kicking myself for not hitting it harder sooner. I put myself in a bad place that I couldn't make up.

Today's race was a flat, windy course in a somewhat deserted industrial-park-like location. No offense to the city of Howard, WI, but this race is not one of my favorites. A two-hour drive from our host-house in Milwaukee is no fun, add that to the spectatorless race on a windy, open course. Ugh. Not my kind of race.

I figured no attacks would stick today, given that to be out of site of the pack the leaders would have to be nearly a half-mile ahead. I went into the day with a conservative attitude; I covered too much yesterday, I was going do my share of work, but, for the most part I wanted to sit in, stay out of the wind. I did that. Which, really, kind of makes for a boring race. Sit. Wait. Pull. Sit. Cover. The last two laps were miserably slow and nerve-racking, no one wanted to work and the whole field just in one big lump going snail's pace. Dangerous.

On the last lap, I spent the whole front stretch fighting a girl for 3rd wheel. We're bar to bar, neither budging. I knew I'd get it with my inside position on the first corner. I did. And then consequently lost it on the head-wind back-stretch where things got messy as a restless pack of racers decided to jockey for position while doing as little work as possible.

Somehow, I ended up fighting that same girl on the back-half and was out in the wind uselessly, stubbornly fighting. I should have just went on. I didn't know if I had enough for the sprint and was too conservative right there. Or was I just too stubborn to give up my call on the wheel? Whatever. I gave it up on the 3rd of the four corners as people seemed to swarm around right before the turn. I lost a handful of positions in the acceleration into and then out out of that sweeping turn.

Impatient racers jumped early, at what must have been nearly 400 yards, to a visible finish line that was too tempting. It apparently must have also been enough of a motivator, because again, most of those early jumpers hung on to their positions. I made up a few places in the early part of the "sprint" but didn't gain anything on the last 300 meters.

4 races left! Hydration, burritos, sleep. Wake up and kick some ass. That's my plan.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Superweek: Round 2 | Day one

In the video, I'm seen between the two leaders. Video quality isn't great, but you can see me chugging up that hill!

Whew! I shake my head in disgust as I remember that race today...I quit early. It's that simple. I lost at least one, maybe two places because I COASTED--stopped pedalling--before the line. Actually, I thought I quit at the line, but it was the WRONG line. And I am dumb. Why race my butt off for an hour and 25 miles worth of racing to give up one half second short? You can see my legs just hanging there while Carrie's telling me not to quit. If this video had better resolution and slow motion you can actually see the line I sprinted to, me realize my mistake and flail to make it up and throw at the line. No dice. 5th.

What's the difference between 5th and 3rd? A really big deal? Just $10? We'll see.

Here's my dim recollection of the race:
It started out aggressive, more so than I was giving credit to a 3/4's race. There was a steady incline after the first turn and a brisk start and an attack on the second lap dropped quite a few in the back. Then a crash on that same hill in the fourth (?) lap, left a lot of racers scrambling to hang on. Prime laps in the second half of the race mixed it up some more and a field of 40 starters was reduced to about 15 in the front group.

On the bell lap, a girl jumped in the start/finish and made a final attack attempt. I recognized its potential and quickly grabbed her wheel and tailed her up the hill. On the backstretch I expected her to lose steam and didn't want to get caught pulling the pack through the last two turns. I gave up my 2nd place position and let an Atlas girl who'd won two of the prime laps get on her wheel and another girl who'd done good attack work in front of me. I felt good about my fourth hole, considering a long, uphill sprint after a fast downhill last corner.

As we turned the last corner, my wheel (the girl in front of me) started to let a gap form in front of her and at that point I conceded to be sprinting for 3rd. "OK, third's OK, do it right....wait....wait....not too early....OK! NOW!" and I went and was worried about having jumped too late. I wasn't getting around her. I kept on until what I thought was the line. And the rest is disappointment.

New day tomorrow!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Witnall Park Finish

4. ... and goes down hard ...
Originally uploaded by Luke
Here's a look at Superweek's points leader, Kelly Benjamin, crashing while throwing her bike at the line. Carrie held her position in front of Catherine Powers for her 3rd place finish (and somehow, after a 35mph sprint, managed to avoid rolling over Kelly's head.)


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Day 4 Superweek-Proving Grounds

Proving Grounds/Test Area
That is just what we did!!! We tested, and proved we could withstand the pressure today. I am sooooo proud of the XPLANE/Team Revolution crew today. They stood up, planted both feet and took names!! Now,I will let you hear it from the girls point of view.
All week I've only wanted one thing, and that's to get in a breakaway. Hadn't happened and it was beginning to frustrate me. Yesterday, after getting into an ultimately unsuccessful break with Catherine Powers, I knew I wasn't the only one.

So today, I decided to keep my eye on Catherine and if she were to jump to give it everything I had to help a break get away and stay away to the end. Catherine positioned herself towards the front, so I did too, and sure enough, on the third lap, someone jumped, might have been the Southbay woman and Catherine caught her, I'm not sure. But in the blink of an eye, Catherine (Aarons), Sara (Cheerwine), and a Southbay Wheelman were away. Alarmed, because I'd let myself get trapped, I sought a way to get clear of the pack. Suddenly there was a gap and I jumped through it. After turning the corner, I checked my wheel to see if I'd brought anyone with me. Nope. It was clear and I put my mind to catching the tail of the 3. Got that done and we were off and pacelining in short order. From then on, it was one big ouch all the way to the end. I didn't have anything left for finish line sprinting, but was mighty pleased to have made it to the end with those gals and to have achieved the day's objective.

Legs are probably blown for tomorrow, but since Katie and June stayed with a slow pack today, they'll be fresh and dangerous, and I'll do everything I can to support that. :D
So after having some saddle issues over the past couple of days... my own, that is, not the bike's... I wasn't too sure what my body was ready to do today. When Sydney told me it was her goal to go with Catherine, I figured that was an excellent strategy after seeing her yesterday. I watched Sydney stay on Catherine's wheel almost like glue for the first 2 laps... almost radioed her to get a little closer a couple of times, but didn't ultimately need to 'cuz she was always working back to that wheel quickly. When she jumped for the break early in the 3rd lap, I took over position near the front of the pack so I could jump with anyone else that went. But, it seems, there were a lot of tired girls in the pack today, so we rode the rest of the race at a rather leisurely pace. I guess I'm rested up for tomorrow! The sprint finish was a tough one... I was in good position, but it started awfully early and my legs weren't too excited about standing for a long sprint! I'm so proud of Sydney for sticking with her goal and making it work today!!!

FINE job ladies. Tomorrow we attempt to grow wings!!! With Sara Uhl and Julie Bishop hunting more sprint points, I have got quite a job ahead of me. 4 pm start time. Think fast, fast, fast thoughts. Dash for Cash!!!!

Day 3 Superweek-A Dip in the Melting Pot

Tuesday's race was a melting pot of attempts. Attack, bridge, establish, return to the group. Attack, join the break and beg for cooperation, of those you're off with, to stay away.
We all were scratching our heads at how to make our break stick. 1st Katie gave it a go and her engine started to ping a bit, then me, who hit it hard with an attack to bridge Catherine Powers (Aarons) and Julie Bishop(HT Naturals), but couldn't quite close the last 100 meters, as Catherine demonstrated that she wasn't waiting. Julie joined me back into the pack and we set up for yet another attempt, this time we Sydney would give it a go. Away she went!!! joined by 3 others, making a nice group. Unfortunately, not everyone wanted to work,I guess felling their chances sprinting with Kelly were much better!!
June took it to the house with 2 to go and kept us all safe with a nice pace. As I jockied with Katie to move up for the last turn, things looked to be getting a little dicey. We just didn't know how much until the last 1000 meters. As we passed through the feed zone, we accelerated, leaving 2 crashes behind, with 200 meters to go.
I sprinted alongside Catherine for a push at the line, only to miss Kelly Benjamin's(Cheerwine) head by 12 inches as she crashed, just barely past the line. See the beginning of the end.....
We all finshed in the top 20. I got to stand on a box with 3rd, Katie 10th, June 13th, and Sydney 19th. What a Day!!!

Monday, July 16, 2007

We had an Alpine experience!!!

..... from Sydney ....
Damn. I'm glad I left that 12/25 cogset on from Snake Alley. Might not have been big hills but they were big enough to make you feel 'em - a lot by the 5th lap. I also had 5 opportunities on a particular downhill to wonder if shox on a road bike might not be a bad idea. Overall, I thought it was great that the three of us who road today all placed in the top 15 and personally, I had what I would consider my very first successful field sprint. And by that, I mean I didn't get freaked out and managed to go from wheel to wheel for a 10th place finish. Wish one of our breakaways would have worked, but Katie (2) and I (1) gave it a go and that's all you can do.

... from Katie ...
So just after June had given me a tip to watch a particular wheel, that wheel started to jet away from the pack on the first hill of the first lap. I decided to give it a go and see what would happen. We worked together off the front for the majority of the first lap before getting caught. I tried (in vain) to get Syd to counter... but the way the race went it was rather smart of her to sit in and see the course before trying any moves on her own. There were enough just-bigger-than-rolling hills to allow regular breaks off the front, but none were to get away. Into the 2-lap-to-go lap, a strong group of 5 of us got off the front, and I thought we had it made. But I was quite wrong! After spending the majority of 2 laps off the front I was pleased to hang on for 6th. It was so great to see Syd off the front for a good try and to see June mixing it up with the big dogs, too! And, of course, we had great feeds and motivation from our sprinter who decided that taking a break today would help her overall sprint points series. Good thing we got those new radios! :)
....from the support crew....
Talk about elated!!!! 3 girls in the top 15!!! You gals rock. Now lets see if I can hold the tent down tomorrow, or should I say blow the top off!!!
Lets get down to Bidnes!!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Day 2 Superweek 07...Ben seen ville

Okay, so the ants went to marching today, tall and strong!!! I gotta hand it to my team today, they rocked!@!! It is awesome seeing all four of your teammates plugging it at the front and regrouping to dish out or take whatever is thrown at us.
Katie took me to the first two sprints with confidence and tremendous forward movement. Yet agian it was Sara Uhl, Julie Bishop, and myself, duking it out for the top 3 spots. Sara and Julie played musical chairs while I sat in the the 3rd Hollywood Square. Believe me, these girls are playing hard.
Sydney picked it up a notch today and kept the pace high, covered attacks, and joined in on some game of cat and mouse, later in the race. Sydney and Katie organized well to take me to the front and drop me in the lap of the right girls.
I am proud of June for getting on the front and drilling it, getting back in, and diggin' it out to give it her all. Chin up June, your just getting warmed up. She'll be looking upward tomorrow. Here's how it stacks up as of Sunday's standings:
Carrie finished 13th, and will forever kick herself for not getting to the wheel designated, Katie finished 20th, will have to check on Sydney (26th?) and June. I will report tomorrow.
Sprint point competition as of Sunday pm, going into Monday: 1st)Sara Uhl(Cheerwine) 2nd) Julie Bishop(HT Naturals)and 3rd) Carrie Cash (XPLANE/Team Revolution)
Join in on the wave folks, and keep us going. Comment on
Later....tomorrow the girls race Alpine Valley Road Race 80K. I will be supporting and resting.


Oh, so sad...I went to the women's 1/2/3 race today in Soulard. I knew it was trouble when I rolled up (in the grocery-getter with the kids in tow) and a few people quickly prompted me to suit up and race. Suspicious? A bit. There were four (4!) women signed up. Four. The saddest women's "race" I've seen. (Not to take anything away from those that did appear, they raced a hard one in hot afternoon STL sun.)

Where is everybody? Carrie is the lone STLisan at Superweek, so that conflict is no excuse...

Doesn't matter (too much). We're working on it and have lots of promising candidates of future racers. C'mon, girls! You're gonna have to pick it up around here! We can't keep expecting to have people donate money if we don't show the numbers (FYI, I heard today's race was paying 5 deep--5th place=$70. I don't know where that money went, but nobody won that--I should have pulled the kids around in the trailer!).

The silver lining? The 4's race had more girls than last year!

Day 1 Superweek 07..and the Ants go marching......

Whew!!! What a way to shake off the cobwebs from a long drive and a hard nights rest. Gusty winds, 1:40 minutes, and some hot sun. As our first race all together, we did really well, getting a break established. (Sydney was off the front for 3-4 laps, all alone, no takers). We controlled the front of the field for as long as we could, until Cheerwine felt it was time to pull the bobber in. I (Carrie) started my sprint competition a sprint early and went for a cash prime. Got It!!! The next two, I wholeheartely sprinted for a 3rd. I gotta tell ya, the money is good for the primes outside of the sprint points, and I couldn't resist the an attempt at a $140 prime. Julie Bishop(HT Naturals), gave me a fine leadout, just about 100 meters tooo early. My quads conceded 25m from the finish line and I gave up second money place in the prime by a wheel, to Sarah Uhl. All in all, I was tired, hot, thirsty, and had a blast. As a team we learned alot about our new riders, Sydney Brown and June Upshaw. Our movement and presence was outstanding, and we look forward to butting heads with Cheerwine, Aarons, and Hub Racing again tomorrow. Standing third in the sprint competition, I say to Julie Bishop...."I'll Be Back".
Katie took 4th in the 3rd sprint, so I don't want to hear that she can't sprint.
June and Sydney are revving their engines, and we will see if sparks fly at Bensenville. I will have an update from the girls after that race as well.
Now, time to ready my head for today....Chris is much better at the commentary, but I will watch the tour tonight and try to learn a little spice. Later! C-

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Never Mind the Tour...

Forget the tour, people! It's SUPERWEEK!

OK, so the Tour is still really cool and exciting and all that, but I woke up this morning thinking about our girls we've got up in Wisconsin. They'll be racing their hearts out this week and I'm sending all the good vibes I have up there!

Good luck, Carrie, Katie, Syd and June! Can't wait to hear your updates.
Rev on!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Better TDF Coverage

Thanks, June! Now I can waste even more time at work!

Monday, July 09, 2007


I am not a slacker. I just got busy at work! So, I'm a slacker. Not dedicating my 15-30 minutes of blogging time. Unfortunately, my blogging is directly related to how much free time I have to think (and read what other people say) about all things cycling. The "Tour" is happening and I'm in my dim, non-cable-access world of trying to maintain a sense of what's happening. What's happening? Argh. Damn Versus. Oh well, at least they have fairly good (free) online coverage (with video).

OK, back to work!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Women as "Safety-o-meters"

In Oregon they're watching where women ride to determine whether a route or area is safe for riding. Check it! I love the implication that a group of women can potentially impact where their local government concentrates bike route safety efforts. Power to the people (ladies), people!

Unfortunately, such is not the case yet in St. Louis (don't even get me started on the disappearing bike lanes on Clayton Road!) But I do believe what we're starting here is only going to improve and deepen efforts for making STL a more bike-friendly city. Just need to keep it rolling!

More on this soon.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Enough Heavy Stuff

photography by Leister Images

Sydney's response is a good one and speaks to why Team Revolution exists. Carrie has a personal mission of education and has worked hard to establish a curriculum around it. We're doing what we can here to create an environment that helps peope learn those critical bike-handling skills. Not to pat ourselves on the back--it's going to take an effort much greater than ours to make any differnce...

Thanks, Syd, for your thoughts. Recommendations and suggestions (and criticisms) are always welcome.

On another note: Mindi has surfaced! She moved up to Pennsylvania to see what she could do on the track. Her post is at our old blog address...we'll make that her own special place for updates (no pressure, Mindi)! Go there now!

Race Safety

After a few days to think about the tragedy of the Proctor Cycling Classic in Peoria, IL this weekend I've still come to no conclusions about how to affect race safety. What are we to do? Boycott races that don't close roads completely? I presume it's an administrative nightmare. An issue that keeps race organizers up at night.

I witnessed the "rolling" closure at Nature Valley for two separate (national caliber) races involving a few hundred cyclists. It was a big ordeal and one that I can't see happeneing for the handful of racers I've seen show up at local women's events.

We can complain, we can argue, but can we justify the resources to demand such orchestration involved in closing off roads for ALL races? How many racers makes that justification? The simple fact is that lives are at stake and there's a significant amount of responsibility laid on the shoulders of the racers. I've personally let that responsibility slip in the heat of a competitive moment...I've had a few lucky "moments" like that; where I was snapped back to the reality of the situation.

We all live, ride and race in a sort of denial. "The officials know what they're doing." "It's a RACE, local drivers will be more respectful because it's a sanctioned event." What are we to do, as racers? I will ponder this until my next road race. Thankfully, I don't think I have any left this year. All crits. Those roads are always closed. Dangerous for a whole other reason...

I'm still left saddened and confused about how to advocate for better safety. Confused because I know what's needed, but am not sure it's a realistic possibility. Where do we draw the line? Is it worth all my internal debate or was it a terrible and unlikely accident?