RACE: Kissena NY State Track Championships 7/24

The weather was unbearable. Stupid hot, stupid humid. I had to get up at 5:45 in order to get to the track on time for the 8am start. I decided to go with my new winning pre-race meal plan of beer and steak, but since I wasn't going to start drinking or grilling that early in the morning, I just had to drink and eat a lot the night before. It made for some pretty dodgy sleeping.

So there I was. Hot, hung over, tired, and ready to race. The attendance ended up being far lighter than any of us expected. Al Barouh apparently decided it wasn't worth his time, which i can't blame him, but it bummed me out. I was really looking forward to the competition he would bring.

The first event was the team sprint. I had talked to Al about getting a team together to try to give Colin a run for his money. Unfortunately, since Al didn't come I ended up on Colin's team. Hey, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right? The team consisted of me starting, Alan Buday second, with Colin as the anchor. Needless to say, with a stacked team like that (and me!) we won the gold. Also, we were the only cat1/2/3 team. Whatever, it's still a victory to me. The official time was 1:28.28, which I'm pretty sure is damn fast. During my part of the sprint though I really felt like my start was sluggish and I wasn't getting up to speed quickly. From what I've heard though, we all started smoothly and stayed together, so I guess it was good enough.

Next was the kilo. Since we were in no rush for time because of the light turnout, we all started on the backstretch in order to finish on the homestretch. I felt like this was my best executed kilo yet. The start felt strong with a nice easy transition to seated after around 160ish meters in. I continued to hold the pace easy until the last half lap, where i really had to motivate myself to finish. I don't think the pace dropped really, it just hurt a lot more. Official time was a 1:16.11, which I think is right around 29.5mph avg. It's nice to still be improving on my kilo time. Sometimes I wonder what I'll do when my kilo times stop getting better.

Wrapping up the first session was the points race. Alan ended up combining the categories to make a cat 1/2/3/4 points race at 25 laps, 5 sprints. The 4's were scored separately though. Most of the 1/2/3's started at the front of the rail, myself being the exception, starting a little behind where the gate is. That's what I get for being slow to get up there. The group pretty much stayed together until the first sprint where Colin started to go off the front. Two other guys went and then I tried to bridge. I caught up to them and then jumped up to Colin who looked like he was slowing down for me to catch up. We traded pulls with one of the other two coming up for a little bit. Colin let me win one of the sprints, which was much appreciated. He told me about a lap and a half before the sprint though, so I just stayed in front until the sprint. I don't know if that's what Colin wanted or expected, but it's just what I thought I should do at the time. This kinda put me in the red though which wasn't helped by Colin wanting to lap the field. I told him I didn't have anything left, so he just motored on ahead and passed a few guys. I had a good gap to the third place guy, so I just spun my way to the finish.

This ended the first session, which I think was around 11am or so. Session 2 wasn't until 2pm, so Karl and I drove around looking for some food. The heat was really getting to me by then, so I really wasn't hungry at all. I just got a large iced coffee, which I think was a terrible idea because the caffeine really made me feel like crud. I also got a double cheeseburger in mcdonalds as we sat in the A/C, but I only ate half of it. On the way back to the track, Karl bought us two bags of ice to keep us cool, which I think really did the trick. By the time session two started I was starting to feel slightly alive again.

Session two started with flying 200's to determine seeding for the sprints. I decided to step up my gearing to a 50x14, which I think is around 96" or so. Karl and I both used the same gearing (same rear wheel, actually) to achieve similar 200 times of 12.66 and 12.60 seconds, respectively. I think the gear really helped me knock off a second from my time last year, which was a 13.55.

My first sprint was against Colin. He had the obligation to lead, so I just sat behind waiting for his jump. First lap was pretty uneventful, with him slowing down in turn 3 to try to get me to pass. I was almost expecting us to try some trackstanding. He continued to lead, with some little jumps in turn 1. We both jumped about the same time, I came downtrack first and into the sprinter's lane, but he was able to pass me and come right around. I tried to at least keep pace, but he kept on pulling away through 3&4. On the plus side, I think I hit my fastest cadence on the track so far at 145rpm.

After this was supposed to be the scratch and the sprint finals, but during the cat4 scratch the skies opened up and sweet, sweet cooling rain came down. We held out until the 4's finished and then it started really pouring, so Alan called off the rest of the events. I really wasn't that upset about it and spent a good amount of time running around in the rain cooling off. And busting my ass sliding into the gate trying to hold it open for some guys coming through.

The official medal tally is:
Gold: 1 - Team Sprint
Silver: 3 - Kilo, Points, Overall
Bronze: 1 - Match Sprints (Based on flying200 time)

In addition, this also completes two of my 3 season goals. Those being a top 5 finish at both opening weekend and states, and a 1:16.5 or faster kilo time. All in all, I'd say this was a great result for me. Just sucks that more people couldn't have come out.

EDIT: In case you're wondering how Karl did, he rocked the cat 4's. Won the team sprints with Andy and Steve, won the Kilo with a 1:17.21, won the points, won the match sprints, 3rd in the scratch, first overall. Now he upgraded to the 3's with me. Hooray Karl!

Also, full results are here:

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