by Ken Huizenga
I enjoy the Time Trial series because it forces me to keep my training up in the hottest summer months. I had done the 30K Three Bears in the past but I felt it was time to try doing both 20K segments this year. With the heat of the summer, I found myself losing weight. Along with the weight coming off my power numbers were slipping as well. This was going to be some interesting data. Was being lighter going to make me faster or were the lower power numbers going to keep everything the same?
I did the first TT back on Aug 2nd. The way out I metered myself as not to blow up too early. My plan was then to pour it on after the half way turn. I had definitely totally emptied my tank and was hoping for at a minimum, for a third place finish. I came in 4th with teammates Jimmy and JJ finishing ahead of me. My power numbers freighted me, only 226 watts. This is down from 245 earlier in the year. UGH!
With some advice from Coach Buzz I set out to change a few bad training habits and worked a bit harder and smarter. I had about three weeks to improve before repeating everything in TT #2. I did harder intervals and more Power focused workouts. After two hard weeks of training as well as the added work stress, I was exhausted. I spent the week before doing a lot of spinning and doing leg openers sessions to keep myself rested and loose.
TT #2 now arrived. I felt strong and ready. This time I was pushing it the whole way. I saw power numbers in the 250-260 range the whole way out. I was stoked! At the turn around I took two deep breaths and settled into my aero position as tight as I could. In the past this meant a tailwind and high speeds. Today there was more of a crosswind, and this proved more difficult than I expected. Still I pedaled with everything I could muster. At the 1K to go make I looked down at my time hoping to see about 31 minutes elapsed. I saw 32:30. I probably should not have looked. I was spent and now was mentally beat. I finished the last 500 meters but I’m sure I had let off a bit. Good news was that I had improved. My wattage increased by 10, I had cut off 30 seconds and finally had an average speed of over 22mph on a flat TT course. All bests for me. The not as good news was that I was still 4th and even after working hard, I now know the discipline this is going to take to win at this level. I sure have a long way to go. This was a great learning experience. Thanks to my IC3 Teammates Jimmy, Gary and JJ. You guy’s rocked it! Also thanks to Coach Buzz for your candor and advice.
by Jimmy Davis
I was really looking forward to this particular race because I had made some changes from the previous race which was on the same course. I wanted to see if I was able to produce a better product this time. When I arrived at the race I was glad to see Ken was already there and Gary arrived just ahead of me. It was not long before a JJ arrived and we started getting our bicycles and gear ready. On this race I wanted to make sure that I got a proper warm up at least 20 minutes on the spinner. As the time got closer I started to warm up and I felt pretty good, raising my heart rate several times on the spinning machine as I got ready to go. Soon Gary, Ken and JJ we're off to the race and when my time came I got ready to go and I had to adjust my helmet because I had tried to find a way to listen to music. While I was adjusting my helmet I heard the race director call my name and I thought "Oh no, did I miss my start time?" Yes I did! As I came up to the line the race directors told me you're going to pull up to the line... as soon as you get to the line then you can then take off; I took off probably 30 seconds late.
My heart rate was beating out of my chest as I had a lot of nervous energy from being late to the start line. Soon I noticed that I was catching the guy in front of me, then I caught another then another and I started thinking to myself that I needed to go ahead and calm down and get into my rhythm. There seemed to be a cross-head wind on the way out, I kept looking down at my power meter, my mph and my heart rate and I could see that I was not at the place that I wanted to be. However, I just tried to maintain my power until I got to the turn around. On the way back it seemed like the headwind wasn't as much of a tail wind as I was expecting after turning around. So, I decided to try to just maintain my power and my rpm as best as I could on the way back. When the race was over me and my teammates sat and talked for quite a while about the race then we went to go see the results if they were posted. When we looked at the posted result it turns out that I had taken first place. I was very happy because now I'm the Arizona time trial points leader in Cat 5 and no one can catch me now as there is only one more race that counts towards the points. I'm very happy! Now I plan on moving up to Cat 4 after the state time trial championships in September. All in all it was a great time trials season.
by JJ Schmidt
After being so close to 2nd on the last one, I was determined to be at least 4 sec. faster. I got my aero helmet on Friday and figured that was good for at least 4 sec. Once again I was looking forward to racing with Gary, Jimmy and Ken. Jimmy sent a link about pacing with power, and since I now have a power meter I thought I would give it a try. I got there on time and was glad to see that the others were already there. I got ready and headed out to warm up. When I went to the starting line Ken must have just left and Gary was about to go. There were two riders between Gary and me. Jimmy was quite a few behind me so I wasn't expecting too see him yet. I started out hard and passed the rider in front of me before the first 1K, I passed a second rider before the 5k mark. I kept an eye on my power and tried to concentrate on keeping my head down and not being all over the road. I was determine to take the turn better this time. I came in faster this time, but clearly I need more practice turning around. After turning the corner I must have been a little off balance because when I stood up my back tire lifted up. Luckily I recovered and tried to keep my pace steady till the last 1K when I gave it all I had. For the first time nobody passed me ( luckily Jimmy started out way behind me and Gary and Ken were in front of me). I managed to shave 45 seconds off my previous time and grabbed second place. It was a good day for IC3 and I'm proud to be part of the team!
by Gary Schobel
Mormon Lake Road Race
This was my first time racing this road race. Michael and I were racing in the Men Cat 4/5 40
+, 50+, tandems category. The course is a beautiful, rolling 16-mile circuit with 380 ft of climbing per lap and a short 6.5% climb at 8 miles. Our category was going to do three laps for a total of 48 miles.
We arrived on Friday afternoon to pre-ride the course and discuss our race strategies. Our plans were to have Michael break away half way through the second lap. It was going to be my job to block or shut down any attempts that the group would make to catch Michael and the break away group. Of course it is highly unlikely that any plans made before the race ever go exactly as planned and this race was no different. In the first lap one rider attacked and put a good gap on the group. Michael and one other rider broke away and bridged the gap.
Unfortunately, Michael and the break were caught with a half lap to go. As the categories began to bunch up, the speed increased. With the categories bunched up so close to the hill climb and the finish it is my understanding that a Cat 5 rider aggressively moved into the pack and in front of the Cat 4 group. The Cat 4 racer went down, taking a group of racers with him. I was one of those riders that went down. I felt it was by God’s grace that I was not injured nearly as bad as some of the other riders. After getting off the ground and checking out the bike, Michael had returned. I had to use the front wheel from his bike to finish the race. Due to the amount of guys from my category involved in the crash I finish the race in 5th place. I returned to the area of the crash to find that Lynn was heading for the hospital for a broken collarbone and a good amount of road rash. My thoughts and prayers quickly went out for Lynn and the guys that were unable to finish the race. It was a bittersweet finish for me; I hate to see guys injured but I was proud of Michael making the podium.
Just a scratch
Williams/Perkinsville Road Race
A 45-mile course with 3,400 ft of climbing - avg 2.8% - out and back. For starters, a special thanks to the mechanics at Single Track Bike Shop for the quick repairs done to my bike. With a sore left hip and a bandaged left elbow, Michael and I headed out with a slightly smaller category of guys. Soon after heading out of town the group narrowed to 6-7 racers. Our plans were to hang in on the descent. I would cover any attacks and Michael would focus on the win during the climb. The descent was long and fast. More then a couple of time it crossed my mind, we have been going downhill for a long time at a fast pace. Sooner or later we are going to turn around and the climb back is going to be much slower and longer. The climb up felt like a race up Mt. Lemmon. Michael passed me at the turn around and I knew we were in good shape. The leaders were just out ahead of us. For me the next 22 miles were uneventful. I crossed the finish line to find out Michael caught and passed the leader to take 1st place. I finished in 3rd place and the IC3 was on the podium again. Praise the lord!
Michael ends up 2nd overall and Gary grabs 3rd!
by Michael Hast
Mormon Lake Road Race
This was the first time I raced in the Mormon Lake Road Race. Gary and I pre-rode parts of the course and drove the rest of the course to get an impression and to finalize our strategy. Our plan was to break away in the second lap of 3 on the climb towards Lake Mary Rd. We included Lynn from team Tolero and Dan from team Stone House Group in our plan. For a successful breakaway I wanted to have more than one rider with me. We were the second to last group that started, just 2 minutes after the category 5 riders. Right from the start, one rider took off. A rider from team Mandalay Bay bridged the gap and both of the riders started to work together. About 4 riders, including me, wanted to close that initial gap. At that point riders from Mandalay Bay started to block, which was annoying, but great teamwork. With some strong pulls, we closed the gap on the climb towards Lake Mary Rd, the climb I wanted to break away in lap 2. Right before the turn to Lake Mary Rd., Joe from team Mandalay Bay started a breakaway. I decided to go with Joe, even though this was just lap 1 of 3. Joe had 3 teammates and I had Gary, all in all 4 riders that could help us to slow down the peloton for a successful break.
Joe and I started to work well together. We came up to "the Wall" to complete the 1st lap and gained quite a bit on the category 5 riders. About 4 miles into lap 2 we passed the category 5 riders and shortly thereafter the Masters 50+,60+ and 70+. That gave us a boost of confidence because it will be harder for our group to pass these riders. Joe and I stayed away for about 2 laps but were unfortunately caught by a huge group of riders. That group consisted of category 5, our category and Master riders, even though it is against the rules for different start groups to merge. I guess there were not enough motorcycle referees to enforce that rule. Well, after we got caught we had about 6 more miles to the finish. For me this was the most nerve wrecking part of the race. Now the plan shifted to stay with the group until the base of "the Wall" and then attack on that final climb. At the base of "the Wall", about 1 mile before the finish, there was a huge crash. Unfortunately, Lynn was taken out and Gary was involved as well. I rode up "the Wall" to the finish, finished 3rd. Afterwards I rode to Gary, gave him my wheel, so that he could finish the race. All in all, it was a successful race, with a great team strategy that worked well, especially after hearing the unfolding of the race from Gary's perspective.
Michael gets third!
Williams/Perkinsville Road Race
The Williams/Perkinsville Road Race was an out and back race starting in Williams going downhill for about 24 miles towards Perkinsville and then back up about 20 miles. The strategy was much simpler than the Mormon Lake Road Race. Stay with the group on the initial 24 miles descent and then attack on the way back up. We started in Williams and rode through the beautiful pines of the Kaibab National Forest. After about 3 miles the road became bad with lot's of potholes and a damaged shoulder, so we exercised caution on our descent. Two riders took off on the descent, and this time we didn't chase them down. Rather we pretty much coasted down at about 40 mph. During the descent I noticed that it got warmer when the pines gave way. After we turned around, I followed one rider, passed him because he was too slow, catching the next rider. I repeated that until there were no more riders to catch. There were no real attacks, just a steady push. That was enough to put me into 1st place. After arriving at home, I realized that I had the same race number 612 in the Oracle Road Race 2 years ago where I won. Coincidence? I THINK NOT ;-)
Michael takes 1st and Gary snags third!
by JJ Schmidt
I was looking forward to this time trial, because three of my teammates were
also doing it. We all started within a few minutes of each other. I started out quickly trying to get my speed up, then tried to settle in where my HR was about 175. I was able to pass two people in front of me but got passed myself at the 5K mark. I was able to keep my concentration up and only spaced out for a couple of seconds. I slowed down too soon for the turn, but hit it hard to get my speed back up. Two more riders passed me after the turn, but I didn't mind because it was Gary and then Jimmy. I passed a couple more riders before getting passed once again myself. At the 1K mark I started to give it everything I had left which got me third place, 1 point in the TT series and a new max heart rate of 197. I was only 4 second behind the second place finisher. I analyzed that one all day. I was pretty happy with my finish and proud of my team! Jimmy and Gary both took first and Ken was right behind me in fourth. I would also like to thank Robert for coming out and supporting us.
by JJ Schmidt
I was pretty excited about this time trial when Jimmy described it as a 30 mph downhill TT. I wasn't convinced that I could maintain 30+ mph for 12 miles, But I was excited to try. Ken was nice enough to pick me up that morning and give me a ride in his nice new truck. Ken proceeded to tell me that no one had made the 30 mph mark since 2012 because of the wind. Ugh, I hate the wind. We got there early and Ken drove us a few miles down the course to give me an idea what it was like, and the wind did not seem too bad. But ... as race time got closer the wind picked up and it was a steady head wind the whole race. It was a little frustrating for me due to the wind but I pushed myself pretty hard and both Ken and I did pretty well. I was glad that my family met us at the bottom to give us a ride back up the hill. It wasn't everything I was hoping for, but I had a great time racing with Ken.
by Ken Huizenga
I picked up my teammate JJ and we headed out early. It was a great morning to race, at 7:15 when we arrived the temperature was about 74 degrees. The winds seemed light but at least they would be crosswinds. We drove the first mile of the course because a week earlier I had done the same thing, but still questioned where the best line would be. The first few miles had patches in the road that might be a little sketchy at 30 mph in the TT bars. We decided the white line was about the best spot to aim for and headed to registration. After pinning on our numbers we began chatting with a few of our neighbors in the parking lot. Conversations were mostly about how the year has gone and how this race was likely to pan out. After about an hour, we started noticing how much the wind was increasing. It was gusting and was now wavering between a likely crosswind shifting to a headwind. Even if a Cat 5 rider like myself has had a remote chance at the 30+ club, it was now definitely not going to happen. If you have not heard, this race awards a special T-shirt to those that average over 30mph for the course.
JJ and I started to warm up and ride along the highway. I wanted to be loose but not waste a bit of energy. The first rider off was at 9 am and I was near the end of list. JJ left about 5 riders in front of me so he had about a three minute head start. I was glad for this because it assured that I would not see him. Racing a friend is just not fun for me. I so hoped he would crush it.
I started into a strong headwind and after a minute of heavy wattage, settled down to focus on staying close to my FTP. I liked what I was seeing on the Garmin and continued at a nice rhythm. Although advertised as a completely downhill course, there were a few long flats that seemed to tail up at the ends. This is where I figured I could pick up the power. After pushing a bit past my threshold, I was happy to see there was only 1.8 miles to go. I tucked in and emptied the tank. I quickly looked down to see my average speed was close to 26mph. I was happy.
Training-wise I felt prepared for this event but was not feeling well this day. I hoped my time would represent our team well. As for JJ, he felt he did his best and we headed home feeling good about our effort. As it turned out, we finished 4th and 5th respectively. Not too shabby. It was an awesome morning spent with a great group of riders. Sonoita was beautiful spot to have this race. Maybe one day I will get one of those t-shirts but for now there is much more work to be done.