Originally registered for the E4/E5 and 35+ 4/5 races and just switched the categories when I upgraded. Probably should have done only one race instead. Same course for last five years, small hill, rough pavement in different spots, old trolley track crossing, though the new potholes this year destroyed lots of carbon fiber wheels. I broke out the $80 Bike Nashbar front wheel for this race.
First race up was the master 123's. Went out conservatively and managed to be in front of Larry Nolan (since he started on the back of the field) for three laps and I saw him go to the front on Chris Phipps' wheel and that was the last the whole group saw of Larry until the finish straight on the last lap where he pulled out the win. I pulled out on lap eight. The pace was not that bad, about threshold for me, just had some doubt in my mind about whether or not I could do this effort twice for 24 laps.
The E3 race had about 90 starters and was a little less smooth and slower than the masters race. It felt hard but ended up being a little easier than the relatively short time I was in the masters race in terms of normalized power. Possibly the heat and some fatigue caught up with me, just not fit enough to do two races twice in day, though other riders were capable of this.
One big difference is that it seems like the E3/M123 races were significantly less negative than most E4/M4 races, I could essentially take it easy during a lot of E4/M4 races with big fields until the last five minutes, versus having to try hard for the whole race to stay with the pack it seems with my current fitness in the E3/M123 races.