Race: Northeast Regional Track Masters Championship, also known as the Dave Miller Memorial
Date: May 20-21
Location: Trexlertown, PA
Rider(s): Jo Johnson
Well the weekend is almost over and it was exciting and FUN. Saturday morning sunshine at 7am quickly turned to a downpour which provided a 3 hr rain delay. Luckily I had the canopy up the night before and got my bikes and stuff under it before the rain really started. But then the cold and damp temperature got to me so the car provided a good warm and dry spot to sit and wait it out. Weather began clearing and racing began about 12:45pm instead of 9:30. The format is a 4 race Omnium with lowest number of points winning 10 year age group. I am in the 65+ age group. Not sure if they will eventually have a 75+ group or not.
First race is the 500 meter from a standing start. I will see if I can reset my PB that I just set this past week in training. When I come off the track, Coach gives me the time she gets vs the official time. I did it! Set another PB by almost half a second. And that holds for the official time too. Not stellar but I will take it. My time is the fastest in my age group so I score 1 point to the other rider in my age group. I later learn my time would have placed me 2nd in the 55-64 age group.
Next race in full aero on the pursuit bars is the 2k, 6 laps of full on torture! This is also a standing start. I am off and doing well, get into full aero position making the hand transition and then I begin to slide my butt forward, awkward, I reposition myself back. Go along just a few meters and slide again. Rats! this slows me some as I loose precious time sliding back onto saddle. These skin suits are slippery on the saddle. Finally come to an end and I finish just 4 seconds off my PB but not what I wanted. I am given 1 point again as I am faster than the other rider.
This next race is the points race of 18 laps with 3 sprints or every 6 laps, winners in age group get 5,4,3,1 point with double points at the last sprint to the line. At this point I am feeling really good, I am riding well within the group of 10 riders ages 45+. I go for a breakaway several times, getting away about half a lap or so, to see if I can get some points but every time they catch me. I am still up on my age group competitor. Just having a great time staying with this group. They relax a lap or 2 before the sprint lap and that gives me a chance to maneuver around the group for position. Then with 3 laps to go to the final sprint and 10 points to the winner, I break away and stay away now one lap passes, they still have not caught me. In the pole lane now, I am flying away from the group at this point. Hoping they do not catch me. 2 laps I am on my own and working for all it is worth. On the last lap, I fly around turn 4 and head for the final stretch along the home straight. Cross the line FIRST, ahead of everyone. Wahoo! my first time winning a race. So with the others not getting this 10 points and different riders getting the prior sprints, I have the most points and win the race! And now I have another 1 point for the Omnium. So I have 3 of the 4 points I will need to win that competition. Later I went to Timing & Scoring and obtain a picture of me crossing the line with the final results listed indicating I am the winner. Will frame that!
Last race of the day is the Scratch race. The gals do not want to do the 15 laps so they all get together and vote for 9 laps instead. Hmmm. That will be a very fast sprinters race. I am not a great one for that so my strategy will be to go out fast from the gun. I do that but they catch me on the second lap. I am now in the group and hanging on. I am still up on my competitor. The race finishes quickly and I now know I have the necessary points for the Omnium award.
Next day is extra fun with nice sunshine and warming up into the 70’s. It will be a short half day comprised of the Flying 200 meter followed by one sprint matched sprint effort. The opponent rider starts out and pulls up track, I was going for the lead right away and go down track. We almost collide but I pull up and she goes to the pole lane and picks up speed, I am along side and quickly pull in front of her at the end of turn 2. I stay at a good speed but not all out around turn 3 and 4. I look behind me and see she is a full turn behind me. At the bell, I am on it and put it all down and go for it all away around for one lap and the win, "pulling away" says the announcer. A good training effort for me.
Not a bad weekend, wining the OMNIUM, and the races that comprise it in my age group, winning the Overall in the Points race, setting a new PB and of course having alot of fun.
Thanks to all the sponsors that help make this possible; EPS/ CSS, Shebell and Shebell, Brielle Cyclery, Trek, Smith Optical and all the other sponsors. And to Teresa DiSessa who manages all of it for us.
Result: 1st in Omnium, 65+
1st in 500 meter, 65+
1st in 2k, 65+
1st OVERALL in Points race
1st in Points race, 65+
1st in Scratch race, 65+