Last year I came into this race with what now looks like a crazy CTL of 133 and a higher FTP, this year after being under the weather for a while in February had to choose between going into this fresh or trying to regain some fitness and chose fitness, probably should have skipped this, but have to sign up for some of these races really far in advance and I signed up for two races and can't just do only one if you show up so will try to use some laps in the E4 race to get used to the course again at race speed and see if I can do anything in the 35+ 4/5 race. On the other hand, didn't do so well last year with better fitness...
Sit in for nine laps of the cat 4 race and pull out. The pace is manageable even given my current condition, the riders are pacing themselves for a forty minute event, but I'm not complaining.
D: 11.4 km
The 35+ 4/5 field has a lot of large teams so it could be interesting and it is. It is strung out for the first six laps as a couple of teams make the race hard (and faster than the 3's - but they had a much longer race) and after we shed half the pack, there is no longer a group of riders I can hide behind and I can't hang on any longer, the pace is not much different from last year just my lack of fitness showing. Ride with two other riders and eventually we catch or are caught by five other riders and just finish out the race, kind of surprised we weren't lapped or pulled but my teammate in the front group of 22 said they slowed up with four to go.
2009 Santa Cruz Criterium 35+ 4/5 from Steven Woo on Vimeo.
D: 17.75 km