Wednesday, July 18, 2007

2002 – My Teammate Wins (not that I helped)!

I raced this year on a composite with Idaho rider Heather Albert and the savvy young rider Leah Toffolon. The race conflicted with Canadian Nationals and some other big event, so the field was not as crazy strong as usual. Heather showed up and said “I want to finish on the podium. I need a big lead since I know you are not a strong team and will not be able to defend very well.” Very true! She was going to attack early in the first 100-mile stage, on Wednesday. She almost dropped me when she did, 8 miles in. It was ungodly hot – mid-90s - and everyone just watched her as she went, and then accepted resignation as her lead grew to a whopping 8 minutes. Holy cow! She rode away with the stage and seized the lead – how is that for follow-through? The rest of the week was a death march, close to 100 every day and constant feeding from the cars. Heather ate plain pasta and Powerbars and a good-luck piece of chocolate every night. Leah introduced me to exotic things to do to oatmeal and coached me in field positioning, how at the start it needed to be almost constant conscious self-talk “how can I move up now? Where is a hole?” We stayed with a host family with 8 kids, restored our legs in their pool each night. I consider myself as having made a neutral contribution to Heather’s win: I inadvertently drank one of her ultra-specific feeds, but then made up for it by covering one break on Saturday.


Heather said...

I love these! Keep them coming!

Michele said...

In case you're wondering what Heather's up to:

Anna Milkowski said...

Great Heather. I do worry I leave out key things or offend people inadvertantly.
Michele, you were there year 1!!? I checked out their site, funny how it posts the watts for each ride - I sure hope those are Uhl's!