I want to start with an apology to the Cat 3 participants from ANZA. When I said I’d help coordinate the training I wanted to do much much more, but then work trips and holidays crushed that leaving Chris Rawlings to step in and destroying any structure that I had in my own training, so this weekend will be (again) a leap into the unknown. I just hope I make it past my customary 100km blow up point.
Anyway enough of that. If you have seen the <participant list> you will see that any plans we had to try to arrange which wave we were in have been thwarted as there are now only 2 waves for Cat 3. The good news is that with 9 ANZA riders in each wave and the top 50 going through from each wave we all have a pretty good chance of making the cut for Sunday.
I have a few race tips but before that, if you haven’t already signed up for the Tour Dinner, then let me assure you that not only is it a really good opportunity to banter with your team mates after day 1 but it is also the best food you will get anywhere in Bintan Resorts that weekend. Here is your link to book dinner tickets if you have not already <Tour Dinner>
The bad news for we Cat 3 folks is that we don’t start until 8.50am (9.50 Singapore Time) a time when most of us normally have or are getting ready to retire for breakfast under the shade of the CBTL canopys. In short, we start at the equivalent of 10am SG Time, ride right through the heat of midday and through to 2.30 or later so IT WILL BE HOT, HOT, HOT! Drink a lot and don’t think it will be a great idea to skip the water stops unless you know you can. Cat 3 has mandatory water stops, so my advice is head straight for the furthest point in the water stop to avoid the scrum.
The Race Tips
I’m leaving this to last so you can all claim you ran out of time when you’re explaining to my why you completely ignored them.
My good friend Einstein is credited with saying that insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result. I, However disagree in my unending faith that eventually Cat 3 will be able to get to the start line together as a team, so here goes.
1. Let’s start the race together. There are 9 ANZA riders in each wave. Find each other, push through the bunch, they’ll grumble but they’ll make way if you say you’re getting to your team mate.
2. Be close to the front but not at the front. Unless you plan to tow 120 people for 160km and then ride them all off your wheel, to quote Crankpunk below, if your chest is in the wind and you are not out on your own then you are in the wrong place. In short, save your energy for when you really need it.
3. Don’t Chase a Team Mate! If there is an ANZA man in a break, DO NOT HELP ANY EFFORT TO CHASE IT DOWN! That way if he is caught, you might still be relatively fresh to have another go.
4. Communicate! If you plan on making a break or crossing to a break with an ANZA man in it, let your team mates know and we can do our best to give you a gap.
5. Have Fun. If things aren’t going your way, there has traditionally been a Margarita stall on the side of the road. I’ve never spotted it, but if you’re all alone and you spot it, have one for me.
6. Consolidate quickly. If you get dropped, find some other unfortunates and convince them to form a peloton with you. I know from experience 60km on your own isn’t much fun when you have already blown up, so find some others or at the worst drop back to the Gran Fondo and ride with them.
6. BE SAFE AND COME HOME IN ONE PIECE. Unless you are hiding something, none of us gets paid for this.
Good luck to you all.