This time I would do all three stages of this Omnium instead of skipping the road race, and that turned out fairly well.
First was the time trial, a mile flat and then a mile to climb 500 feet. I really liked the first part best. It was a little chilly, so I decided on armwarmers while warming up in a jacket, but then took them off at the start line.
I caught my 30 second man a little after the mile, but he pulled even with me as we started up the hill, got away a little as we went up, and finished a couple hundred yards ahead. Meantime the guy 30 seconds behind me caught us both and finished ahead of my 30 second man. A slight variance in times there.
Back down the hill and back to the car, and it started to rain on the 3s, 2s, and 1s. Ha ha, they later because they are more important. I nap in the car until Monica has discharged her responsibilities and we can leave. After lunch in Nampa, Jay reluctantly stops at a Fred Meyer so she can shop for "10 minutes" but we drowse for half an hour or so before she reappears with some plants.
Back to the other side of Boise, and there isn't much time to laze around before we need to go back to Nampa for the crit. I help Jay and Luke set up the PA for the announcer - funny how they get to do that, owning an electonics shop and all. The course is much as I remember, no more than three blocks in a line with bumpy corners. I will be happy not to get taken down.
That's pretty much the strategy, I hang out at the back of the pack as various and sundry 4-5s get dropped and pulled out. We start with around 40, and by the time the finish rolls around I am still unwilling to go bump elbows at the front so I settle for 10th. Being an Omnium, of course, all places after sixth are entirely equivalent. So with my exactly mid-pack TT result posted at the crit start, I have got a perfect score of 12 points so far, shooting for 18. Oh wait, maybe a perfect score would be 3.
But what can you do. I drive separately to the road race, near Melba, in the morning since I intend to head back to IF yet again on the extra day of the weekend (Memorial Day) while Luke has a junior race that doesn't start until ours finishes, using nearly the same course. It is very windy, as windy as the Barking Spider - which course isn't all that far away. It wasn't this windy in Boise, but I am coming to realize that although Boise is mostly warmer than Idaho Falls, it is just about as windy in non-sheltered places.
The road race starts out very slowly, we are neutral down a bluff until turning onto the race course proper, a nine-mile loop. The first part of the loop that we ride is cross-downwind, so two guys get away very easily as everybody else seems content to let them fry out there. Well, get toasted in the wind anyway since it's not really that hot. I am well pleased to sit in the back for a lap and examine the elevation changes for suitability to my purposes. Except that going down this little tiny roller, I accidentally roll off the front. Sitting up. I have no idea what is going on. But after a half-mile or so, when the pack shows no inclination whatsoever to chase me, I cautiously put forth a little effort in order to try and catch the two who are still in front.
Trying not to cook myself as I turn into the vicious wind, I still am gaining on the two and the pack is not gaining on me. Up the little hill to the finish line, not too bad as long as I can set my own pace. But the wind is really quite nasty. It's slowing the two in front as well, but it still takes me until we get back to the first turn and downwind again to catch them. Four more laps.
One of these guys is stronger than the other, about as strong as I feel today, but the weaker one disrupts any rhythm we might attempt. At the last headwind hill of the next lap, he falls off for good. We notice the pack is finally chasing, and quite close, as the downwind section begins again. We slack off a bit, and are soon caught. There is an immediate counterattack, and since I have rested a bit, I go along. We are six, and the rest of the pack has splintered in the chase. One lap later, after some hard work, there is no one to be seen behind us. Two laps to go. Some 1-2s go by, lapping us. We see some random masters and women, dropped 3s, and abandoned 4s talking on the side of the road. Now my break companions start playing games, almost fighting one another to stay on my wheel. There is one guy who seems to be toying with us, but the rest all seem fairly even. And pretty tired too, though I should be more tired as I have presumably done the most work of anyone in the race. There, that made me feel better. I could stomp the little rollers in my 12, and they hung on, and I didn't get dropped the rest of the time into and across the wind. Amazingly enough, maybe the Boise Tuesday nighters are doing something. Still haven't talked to Brooke though. Darn it. Focus!
One lap to go. We get a little strung out on the finish hill, but back together soon after. Nobody wants to pull into the wind. Wonder why. As we turn out of the crosswind, the one stronger guy absolutely takes off. I chase with another two, but we can't get him. Some 1-2s pass us before his attack, we pass them chasing him, then they pass us again and then him. We can't get him before the finish, not with the other two sucking my wheel on the downwind section and then trying to drop me as we turn into the wind for the last time. Even that doesn't work, and I am with them again as we come to the bottom of the finish hill. They are watching each other for attacks, and finally the smaller one goes for it up the hill. I go after him, ahead of the other guy, surprisingly enough. But I let him get a little too far ahead on the steep section, and even sprinting hard on the flatter section that follows I can't quite catch him by the finish line. Missed by about a wheel.
Oh well. Wait, I got third, there might be money for that. Ride very tiredly back into the wind to the other end of the course and up the hill to Melba to await final results.
I do get money, $10 in fact. And as the results are posted, I see that even with the mediocre TT and crit, the RR points put me in sixth place for the omnium. Which is just a place away from the omnium money. Now I'm bummed again, just a wheel away. From the omnium winner, as it turns out. He still would have won, but some other guy would have got sixth instead had I taken the sprint.
Now it's oh well again, and I get out of the wind into my car and ride the tailwind to IF for some more mail and laundry but not a lot of other things, the electronic toys are already in Boise and I don't really have any furniture.