When I first started this post I thought to myself, "Did I even make an annual training plan this year?" Apparently I did. So let that set the tone for this season.
My goals, according to my ATP were:
1. Sub 1:11 Kilo
2. Win spring classic and/or states
3. Top 10 placing in NTC Calendar
Let's break it down:
1. As best I can remember, I only did 3 kilos this season. I did a 1:09.036 in Milton for Ontario Provincials, 1:09.969 at nats, and 1:14.21 at states. I guess this counts as me doing a sub 1:11 kilo, but really that goal was intended at kissena.
2. I came in 4th at the spring classic and 2nd at states. I have to say though, that I think I rode the best I've ever ridden at states this year. Maybe not the fastest, but I want to say tactically I couldn't have done much better without knowing the outcome of the races beforehand.
3. The NTC calendar was all kinds of weird this year, and I'm not sure they even bothered to log results anymore. I really could only get points at the t-town events, which were dominated by the international stars.
That said, let's look at the highs and lows of the season:
I suppose my season started with the Milton International Challenge, which was the test event for the panam games at the new Mattamy National Cycling Center up in Canada. When they said international, they meant it. I emailed the promotor to make sure it was an open elite UCI field and he said "sure, come on up, have fun." so I went. And I did have fun. But man oh man did I get my ass kicked. Really bad. But I did see some racing buddies from nats and bikeforums and met some new friends, so that was cool.
It looks like the next thing was the second life bikes roller race, which is always a great time. I think they only had one this year, which I won. I did manage to get my back wheel caught in the rollers, very likely after my qualifier? Either way, I raced the whole season on a tubular with a ripping sidewall. YOLO. Also, I had a very important mission during these roller races, because my dad had accidentally washed and dried my wool jersey from second life bikes earlier in the year, which made it tiny-sized. I got a new one, and now I'm happy and wooly. Amelia might feel different about it. Regardless, second life bikes is great and I always look forward to these.
Up next was the "six days of kissena" series I helped to put on at k-town, though it was mostly Brean doing everything. I just helped with the sprints and keirins, or in other words, the events I wanted to do. It was stupidly cold to start, but by the end of the series the spring hit.
In the middle of this, JoshS and I went back up to Canada, so I could redeem myself. I definitely did, coming in 3rd in the kilo, 2nd in the keirin, 2nd in the sprints, and top 10? in the scratch. Good job us. Josh didn't do so hot, so now he has some redeeming of his own to do. Stupid canada.
After that Erin got me the invite to race "The Keirin" at DLV, which is an invitational event with good prize money and a great vibe. I raced the sprints the night before with something like a 5th place seed, but managed to get 3rd overall. The announcer was impressed by my ability to ride while looking back at the rider behind me. In the keirin itself, I won a few rounds and ended up in the final, getting third place overall. My cousin and his wife came out to watch, and so did my old college buddy the richard. That was a great time racing and hanging out with friends. Total boost to my morale.
Next came the start of the kissena twilight series and the start of super tuesdays and the world series of bicycling at t-town. I got some good early results on a tuesday or two before the pros showed up, but the big thing I was interested in was the keirins. Once again, put up against international talent, I had my doors blown off. Like destroyed. Couldn't even hold wheels. And that was another blow to the system.
EDIT: Right about in here should be tandemonium. There's not much to write about tandemonium this year. I think there were only 4 teams to do the tandem sprints, in which Andrew and I came in 3rd again. We also came in 3rd in the tandem scratch, but I can't really remember the details of what happened.
I think the next big race to happen was nationals? That sounds about right. Nats were in LA, and were combined with juniors transitioning to elites later in the week. It was really cool to hang with the star track crowd and see them rake in the medals. It was also cool to hang with the usual crowd that I hang with. I think I had a 13th place kilo, didn't get through the keirins, was the first rider to not make the selection in the scratch race qualifier. Which reminds me. I should get this off my chest. Early in the race, I was at the head of the pack taking my pull, and some dipshit blasts underneath me on the cote and attacks. He's further up in the field than me across the finish line and I assume I'll make it through when they relegate him, but nope, no relegation. The CR decided it wasn't a serious infraction and didn't affect the race. Well, you know, except that's the stupidest and most dangerous move you can make and it knocked me out of the finals. Me being the guy he would have crashed out had he hit me while passing underneath me. Good job with that one, USAC. I guess I really shouldn't expect anything less from them and their no-fucks-given attitude when it comes to track racing.
Anyhow, team sprint and team pursuit were both lackluster. We figured we'd be guaranteed a medal in the TP as there were only 3 teams day of, but a fourth team got added and beat us. That was pretty defeating, but you know what? All the free time I had after I got knocked out of my qualifiers meant I got to drive around LA with Amelia and have some drinks and a great time. So I think I came out ahead.
After this was states, which like I say, I was happy with how I raced. Kieran had a great team working for him, who really saved his butt a few times. Jurgen looked really good this year, too.
The last big race to happen was Labor Day. I was on the fence about it for a while, but eventually we decided to go. I think Amelia and I were at a party the day before labor day, so I felt pretty hung over and beat up. I didn't really race too well, but whatever.
And that was the season. It was a real roller coaster this year, with a lot of highs and lows, and not much training in between. That said, I am feeling really motivated for next season and I'm already doing some weights and roller work. I'll talk about all this in a different blog post, I suppose.
Thanks for reading. Thanks for everybody who's supported me this season, especially Amelia. I can't wait to see you all again!