Carl Dolan Memorial Spring Classic Race Report

The Carl Dolan Memorial Spring Classic, a 21 mile criterium, was held in Cambridge, MD, on a 2.1-mile course, on Sunday, April 13. I was dropped by the pack at the start of the race and was unable to catch up. I abandoned the race at the end of the first of 10 laps. I had been optimistic that my time trial-specific training program would allow me to be competitive in other styles of racing. I was wrong.

The last time I had raced this event was 10 years ago, my fourth year of bike racing. At that time, I was logging twice as many training miles per week. I was still developing my fitness, while learning how to, and how not to, train. This time, I was reminded of the importance, and limitations, of specificity of training. As described on the Training page of this blog, I have been training specifically, over the past several years, for the “steady-state” endurance required by time trials. As a result, I was not prepared for the rapid tempo changes of criteriums and road races. That’s why I was dropped so quickly by the pack at the start of this race.

Consequently, there is no reason to continue pursuing any “best-all-around rider” titles since I will simply not be competitive in criteriums and road races, which made up roughly half my race schedule this season. I have deleted them (See Race Schedule). I will focus on winning the 11 time trials that remain.