It’s been a long winter. I’ve been trapped indoors for countless hours and countless miles. Although 8-person CompuTrainer sessions are fun, nothing beats riding on the road. In December, I decided to make a new goal for myself come springtime: race the Barry-Roubaix.
I’ve never been out to Michigan before. Driving to Hastings, we encountered some serious hills. One day before the race, we loaded up with a good meal at Founder’s Brewing Co, and went off to recon some of the course.
Four miles onto the course, I realized it was unreal. Three huge climbs and loose gravel gave me the sign that I was in for an interesting race the following day.
Coach Geoffrey Chandler had two tips of wisdom for the race. First, just relax. Second, Red Bull and Pop Tarts for breakfast. Both of these are now part of the pre-race routine for the year.
On the line, I was surrounded by 3,000 other riders, all with the same basic goal: Conquer.
Attack after attack, climb after climb, I had to conquer all 36 miles of course this day.
In just over 2 hours, the deed was done.
16.4 miles per hour and over 2,000 feet of climbing. 10th in the juniors field.
I feel that the winter training has paid off, purely due to great coaching. This was a great winter goal, like the early Spring Classics races that the pros do. Now, the main event begins: criterium season.
Stay tuned for my race report about Lincoln Park next week!
Joe “Pepe” Sullivan is a junior cyclists from Evanston, Illinois. He begins the 2015 cycling season racing as a 17 year-old, riding a Specialized Venge, named “El Diablo Dos.” Joe races for Higher Gear in both cyclocross and road. You can find him most of the summer and many weekends at Higher Gear.