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Entries For: February 2011


It's here ...

3T Scatto ... out with the old (Easton EC90), in with the new!

scatto on t1the office


Go Anna

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Anna Meares ...

CCCC's new website

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Congrats to CCCC, who continue to lead

Those of you that haven't noticed, Carnegie-Caulfield have launched their new website (that's two re-launches that I can remember). It's a modern CMS (They're using Wordpress), not all that dis-similar to Plone - that some of you might remember me pitching to Blackburn 3 or 4 years ago now?  Anyway ... Congrats to CCCC, and Adam King in particular.  It looks good.

Side-note - if you get onto their site and have a look at Adam's avatar, it's a photo taken at a round of the SSS!


Big fish, little pond. Little fish, big pond

Or, some days you're the hammer, other days, the nail.

Saturday, Blackburn club championships sprint day.  It's blowing a healthy nor-westerly (fast if you know how to use it).  500m ITT first, I use 90".  Held starts (we HAVE GATES FFS! USE THE DAMN THINGS!).  I ride a 40.03 (hand timed) which I think is a PB. It's fast enough to win MMAS3 and would have gotten me a bronze in JM17(!).  Good-o, one in the bag, big fish in a little pond, the other guys I'm racing against are enduros.  The Wizard rides 38.something to win MMAS2.  Dino wins the 750 at DISC at the Vic Masters on the same day (clashes with BBN's club champs).  This will be the last bit of really good news for Dino, who is clearly the fastest MMAS4 in the state of Victoria (big fish, big pond).  Emily has no competition, not a single JW17 has shown up to race with her. She rides a pretty good 500 in the circumstances.  I'm pleased both for her (win, you can only beat the people that show up to race) and also proud of her.  I believe strongly that elite riders should make the effort to race club races when possible, especially things like club championships.  It shows the younger kids where they can go and they're part of something and it keeps the elites grounded.  Likewise I'm proud of Emerson Harwood (NTID) who also raced.

Next up, flying 200's.  It's still blowing a gale, I keep the 90" on.  I ride a 13.20, another PB (by 0.1s).  That'll do, I'm 0.4s faster than the second qualifier, Richard Stringer, in MMAS3.  Emerson breaks Andrew Steel's long-standing track record, with no aero fruit.  He rides 11.8 seconds.  At Blackburn, that's very fast. Emily rides a much better time than she rode last week at round 4 of the SSS.  James Dann rides another PB and qualifies third in JM17.

Race time, I get to watch as Alan Dorin and Ben Schofiled fight it out for the chance to race me (4v5).  Alan wins that, has a rest and then I race him.  I've raced Alan many times over the years, almost always in endurance races and he has almost always been able to beat me.  Not today.  Sprint is my game and he goes later than I expected him to, gets a small gap which I use as a lay off and I zip past him to take an easy win.  Easier than I thought it would be, the standard mode of attack is for these guys to go early and keep jumping (how to beat a sprinter in one easy lesson).  Maybe he wasn't 100% fit? I don't know.  I'm though to the final.  Richard Stringer races Rob Monteath for the other chance to race for first, Richard wins it.  So I'm up against Richard in a best of three for the gold.

The first one, I have the lead (I think!), Richard takes it at a jump, gets a small gap but I catch and pass him.  One down, that wasn't too bad.  He can accelerate and handle the bike well, but doesn't have the top speed to pass me.  Good to know ...

Round two and he's got the lead, and jams me right up hard into the fence at 2.5 to go.  Jammed so hard I had to grab the fence to avoid falling over!  As I grab the rail he jumps and is gone.  I chase (it's now a 700m ITT!), wind him back a little, while watching him swerving around a few times (huh?! he's 40m in front and almost in the grass?!) but the gap is just too big and I can't reel him in, I concede and it's 1:1.  I'm not pleased about it, but this is club racing and I don't think he meant to jam me so hard into the railing.  I'm not going to protest, I do mention it to Doug but he didn't see it, no-one did, it was at the far end of the track and obscured by how we were positioned.  I don't think even Richard realised what he'd done.

Round three, this time I resolve to take this one from the front.  I have speed on Richard, I don't think he'd be able to pass me at full gas.  I have the lead, every time he moves I ramp it up a little, pulling him down off the bank and keeping him under control.  No low speed, sudden jumps this time and no way I'm letting him in front to push me around this time.  With a bit over a lap to go I accelerate, not 100%, but around 80% or so, not looking back any more, but I will kick up the back straight and again around the final bend, that's the plan anyway.  I know he's hard on my wheel but I'll break his timing by changing pace.  Up the final straight and I kick again with 40m to go and just wobble a fraction out of the sprinters lane for a brief moment, it's entirely accidental, I think (I didn't see it) it made Richard move off his passing line, I cross first and record a win.  There's some discussion about it, I did leave the lane, if the judges think it affected the results I will not be upset and I tell Richard if he wants to protest I will not be upset with him about it (I didn't see if it made any difference but I did do it).  He decides not to protest and the result stands.

Ok, club champion for MMAS3 in the TT and the sprint.  My first ever.  I am pleased!

Sunday, different story.  Vic Masters.  I'm now the little fish.  Here be real sprinters.  One guy in our division is a masters world champion and has come down from Sydney to teach us all a lesson.  In my opinion, DFL trumps DNS every day.  I'm going to put that to the test.  My flying 200 is a PB again on 96", at DISC, I ride 12.8something.  Beats my previous best by a whole 0.1s!  Heh!  Anyway, I'm pleased with that, but Gavin (the guy from NSW) rides 11.1  Uhuh .. and He's qualified 1st, I've qualified last (8th) - 1v8.  Good-o.  This will be ... entertaining ... I have the lead, tactically I do it all as well as could be expected, I keep watching him the whole time, using the bank and speed changes to control position, do the hook-and-drop at turn three with one to go, but Gavin just hits the accelerator and goes whoosh past me.  He did everything right, was patient.  I'm out 'til the keirin in the afternoon.  Still, one better than last year when I didn't get a ride except for the flying 200.

Dino's on fire, he's qualifed fastest and is up against a bloke who's flying 200 suggested his experience at this track was marginal.  Dino's lined him up to pass on the finishing straight when he (the guy Dino's racing, loses control and turns right, straight up into Dino with 40m to go.  WTF?!  Dino comes down hard and breaks his collarbone.  I'd like to remind everyone reading of a rule, an important rule.   These things happen but that should not have.  Dino's put his heart and soul into training for this event and this was just horribly cruel.  He gets bundled off in an ambulance with lots of strong drugs.

Chris Ray wins his sprints and wins Gold.  Dino gets a silver by virtue of a disqualification.  Not what he wanted and it's awful.  Emily collects his medal for him later.

Keirins, I've drawn number 1, I get the motorbike.  I'm on 96".  Safely on the bike, I lead it out, with one to go the boys behind me kick and I don't have the legs to go with it, first three (of the four in our heat) go through to the final, and they all cruise over the line.  Outgunned?  uhuh ... anyway, DFL trumps DNS.

Mick Thomas wins the MMAS4 (or 5? Mick?) scratch race AND the keirin!

After some running around with Emily (Dino's not driving anywhere today!) and a solid state team training session in the evening it's time to go home.  Phew.  A big big weekend ...



MACC's again

A couple of solid days training

This weekend is the Blackburn club championships on Saturday (sprint and 500m time trial) and on Sunday it's the sprint and keirin Vic Masters championships.  A busy couple of days.  I'm MMAS3 this year (40-44) which is new for me.  The standard is pretty high at the Vic masters, there's a few riders there who are orders of magnitude faster than I am.  So beit.  I'll do my best.  in the lead up, I've had a good fortnight's training.  As mentioned earlier I'm back in the gym able to squat and getting some good quality track sessions done both at Blackburn with Dino, Pat and Nic, and at DISC.  Hilton did a set of four MACCs for me yesterday before the mani training session.  I found a new top speed on my track bike.  66.1km/h.  We have kids that go that fast, but still, for me, that's moving.

Here's the graph of that effort. 20110216-macc  They're great fun, MACCs.  You don't break the wind but they really get you moving.   Good stuff.  The video from a couple of these efforts is below.  Seriously good fun!

So the last couple of days, trained on Saturday, raced SSS round 4 on Sunday, lifted in the gym on Monday, MACC's and rider pass efforts on Tuesday at Blackburn, MACC's at DISC on Wednesday, today (evening) we're in the gym again and Friday will be a rest day.  Then the fun begins.  Good-o. 



I'm back (ish)

Not displeased with how I went at SSS r4

It could have been better, I might have been able to train consistantly, but that's life and we all have reasons/excuses for why we perform how we do on race day.  I'm lighter (~100kg vs 113kg) than I was at this time last year which has helped my jump.  My jump still sucks, but it sucks less than it used to.  Now I'm only having to bridge up 10m, not 40m and that's a significant improvement.  I'm back in the gym as of last week doing consistent lifting after a layoff of some 10 months so I'll get strong again.  The week in the pressure-cooker at Dunc Grey didn't help my preparation, excuse, excuse, excuse ... !

ENOUGH!  Get on with the damn racing!

Ok ..

I warmed up on 50x17, light easy gear.  Did a couple of revouts, one chasing Neil, just to get things moving.  On Saturday I'd done some short efforts at Daryl Perkins' session at DISC just before our NTID session and I felt ok.  Hitting around 1400 watts peak doing jumps.  Ok, that's not too bad for an old guy who's missed a lot of ENOUGH WITH THE EXCUSES! .. it was a good session yesterday!

20110213-f200Flying 200 time.  I rode a 13.5, not that far off my PB (around 0.2 I think, slower than it) - I didn't use the disk wheel, I kept the powertap wheel on all day, so here's the evidence for the flying 200.  Conditions weren't ideal, a southerly and pretty cold. I'm pleased with that time.  I still want to get down into the 12's but I think that will have to wait 'til next season.

Draw done, and I'm to race James Dann, Ian McGinley and Aaron Christiansen in the rounds.  I was the fastest qualifier in B grade (again!).  6 of us in the grade.  Being fastest qualifier helps later, as you shall see ...

20110213-vs-jamesJames is a junior invitational rider, I coach him and he's got a kick.  But, he's restricted to 82 gear inches.  I'm on 90".  How do you take the jump out of the picture?  Keep the speed up and burn him off.  That's the theory, at least.  I lead out, jumped coming out of turn 4 (should have gone at the entry to turn 3 ...) just before the bell, James kicks and is in front of me.  Right ... chase chase chase, on the wheel, coming past but left it too late.  James bags his coach.  I'll fix him later!  Our last 200 was done in 13.4 seconds and he was in the front all the time, James was really moving.  Watch for him next summer.

20110213-vs-ianSecond race and I'm up against Ian.  He's mainly an enduro but can sprint a bit. A decent all-rounder.  He jumps me, I chase, I go to pass on the back straight but he uses a second kick and stays clear.  Doh!  Ian's a good racer and his flying 200 doesn't reflect his ability.


20110213-vs-aaronThird heat and I'm racing Aaron.  Aaron's done very few match sprints but he's a very fit rider and has ridden faster flying 200's than I have at DISC.  I can't take him for granted, that's for sure.  Again I get gapped at the jump but this time I find a bit more speed and manage to catch Aaron just in time to bag a win.  That hurt.  Lots. I'll pay for it if I make the finals.

20110213-vs-nicholasAt the end of the rounds there's a few of us tied on 9 points.  As the fastest qualifier I get the forth spot, racing against Nicholas Cockerell (another newbie).  Three laps.  I'll have the lead thanks, and I hold him tight up against the fence for a lap and a half, I don't want a long race, but I need the speed high to reduce the impact of his jump.  He gets around me, I get up to his wheel but not enough and he wins, I get 4th overall (again!).  Interesting fact, I've never been on the podium at an SSS round.  As the guy who runs it I think that's probably appropriate, but I'll get on the damn thing one day and shake my own hand!

Video to come ...

Thankyou to :

Lucie Akers (photography)

Jodie Dundas (videography)

Krissy Dundas (general help)

Anne Apolito (race entry and results)

John 'Star Trek' Lewis for race timing

Sue Dundas (commissaire)

Chris Dann (commentary)

Alex Vaughan (sausages!)




back into training

At last I can squat again

Where there's an orthopaedic issue, there's an engineering solution.  I present Dave Draper's  Top Squat


 Not since April 2010 have I been able to do a proper squat.  I've been able to front squat (sucks....), deadlift etc but with a SLAP tear and osteoarthritis in my shoulders the rotation of my arms was restricted (and still is and probably always will be) such that I can't hold the barbell properly.  But with this doodad I can.  Sorta - it's not perfect, but it's a damn sight better than not being able to do it.

So on Monday (still full of mental and physical fatigue after the Aust titles in Sydney) I got under the bar for the first time in about 9 months or so.  I only worked up to a lazy 80kg workset, the technique is a little different and there's a couple of tricks to using it (keep the thing LEVEL! or the barbell slips to one side, not ideal!) but in general it's a great bit of kit.  On Tuesday I had DOMS and that is good!

Yesterday I got to DISC early and Hilts gave me a couple of MACC's for fun.  I slapped on 96" to do 'em. Here's the graph of the last effort.  It was supposed to be 375m, with me riding the last 125m unassisted, but Hilts blew the whistle, which means keep going, and it ended up being 500m.  I think I found a new HRmax ... They are FUN! Hilton is a superb derny rider.  I have much to learn.



Eat more fat, less carbs

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Preaching to the converted again ...

Momentum is growing ...

Relevant quotes :

Processed carbohydrates, which many Americans eat today in place of fat, may increase the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease more than fat does—a finding that has serious implications for new dietary guidelines expected this year.


A 1997 study he co-authored in the Journal of the American Medical Association evaluated 65,000 women and found that the quintile of women who ate the most easily digestible and readily absorbed carbohydrates—that is, those with the highest glycemic index—were 47 percent more likely to acquire type 2 diabetes than those in the quintile with the lowest average glycemic-index score. (The amount of fat the women ate did not affect diabetes risk.)


and for giggles ...

“the sugared beverage industry is lobbying very hard and trying to cast doubt on all these studies.”


There's a surprize!



Today it begins in earnest

Yesterday was the women's team sprint, today it's everything!

I'm up in Sydney at the Dunc Grey velodrome as part of the Victorian state team, a pretty minor part, as best I can tell I'm looking after the physical stuff for the guys we've been coaching for the last year.  It's a bit muddy, but I'm dogsbody for Hilts and the guys (this is not a bad thing!). It's a great opportunity to see how it all works and gain a lot of very valuable experience.  In particular I'm learning (or trying to!) how to fit in and get things done in this team environment without stepping on too many toes.  I have much to learn and a few personalities that I need to understand better to get along with smoothly.

But we're here to race, and our athletes are the reason we're here. So on with the real story :

Yesterday we had Adele and Caitlin racing the team sprint.  There was five teams in total and our girls had, on the other side of the track, Anna.  Welcome to the big time.  Adele is no stranger to the big stage but Caitlin was pretty new to this level of competition.  For those of you that remember these two girls starting at Blackburn all those years ago, what a journey they've had so far.  They're solid friends and they look after eachother.  They rode well, not perfectly, but they gave their all and finished fourth, improving their time in the final they made it into by a fraction of a second.  Given that they were the only all J19 team I think that's pretty good.  I know personally that I'm happy when a rider commits and does their very best.  Both girls did that and I'm proud of them.

Along the way yesterday, Jack Bobridge broke the unbreakable world record.  Chris Boardman set the pursuit record way back in 1994 I think, with superman position on a space-age bike.  Jack beat that record on a BT you can buy yourself using normal aerobars.  Wow....  Shane Perkins also rode a blistering 10.05s flying 200.

Today we up the ante, the J19 men do the kilo.  The girls do their flying 200 and the 500m time trial.   It's going to be intense.  Bring it on.


Super efficient learning

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We didn't have much time today ...

Today we had our first session on Dunc Gray with our sprinters - we had 90 minutes of track time.  Some of the guys had ridden here before, some had not and we needed to get them a hit out, practice their entry lines and team sprint changes etc ... So I was inspired by an old schoolmate's martial arts training session.  Breaking the golden rule of "nothing new on race day" (or in this case, at nationals), we did a drill the guys hadn't done before, but it was an efficient combination of a number of drills they had.

We mixed in flying 100/150's (100 for the girls who are racing the team sprint tomorrow), 150's for the boys who aren't racing 'til Thursday), in pairs, with a team-sprint change.  So the lead rider has a follower, hard on their wheel, rides a flying entry, swings up on the exit to a bend and the follower goes for the rest of the distance.  We've done these at DISC as a warmdown (!) but today we did them to reinforce the best line for a flying 200 and to get some team sprint changes happening.

The guys told me they liked the drill, which given that it's some 40-odd degrees here I was pretty happy with, even Hilton seemed to approve and he's a very hard taskmaster.

I think we'll use this, or variations thereof, regularly as familiarisation drills at away-grounds in future.

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