I'm not sure that's really a word, and I believe it is short for "road oval". Evidently the fall Nascar race will be on this "road" course that is fully inside the Charlotte Motor Speedway's typical oval. It's not a full road course, but does have several turns. I didn't know this was going to be a thing since I don't follow Nascar at all. Furthermore, I'm not sure why it is setup in May for a race that will take place in October. It must be setup for practice as the Memorial Day weekend races will be on the normal oval, from what I understand.
He had already done a warmup lap, so I decided to get changed and get out on the track. I didn't have my new 2018 kit yet (it actually came the next day). So I put on my trisuit from last year. I quickly got my bike ready as I knew they would be shutting down the course to start the first riders off around 6pm (usually it's 6:30pm). I got in a lap and had started the second lap, when they started yelling to clear the course.
|Green Lightning Ready to Rumble|
After those couple of warmup laps, I went back and hung out with Paul and BSR Erik and his wife. I was slated to go off at 7:30 because of the speed I put in, and because my last name starts with 'W'. After Erik went off to start, I did a few warmup laps around the garage area. It was more than an hour since I had ridden on the big oval. I rode some until I felt like I was warmed back up.
I got in line to start and waited maybe 10 minutes before I got up to the front to go. It always strikes me as a little funny, these time trial start/wait lines. I mean everyone's so jovial, and talking like we're going on a Sunday stroll, and not staring at 25 minutes of pure, unadulterated, pain.
I get to the front, and the 'holder' grabs the back of my bike. We stood there for longer than usual as they were sending people off at 30 sec intervals instead of 15 seconds. I get clipped in and sit there. They give you the countdown, say GO, I hit my Garmin and I'm off.
There always seems to be a big push for watts in that first 30 seconds to a minute. Maybe I should back off on these and not average 400 watts out of the gate. I did want to start strong through the first curve section of the course. You hit it for the first time right out of the start. As you make that first 180 degree turn and come down the hill, you get quite a bit of speed. The first time through I was going over 34 mph, and couldn't make the turn as sharp as possible. It felt a little hairy leaning over to turn at 34+ mph.
Then coming around the next 180 degree turn I was going over 32 and swung it pretty wide out onto the main track. From there, the rest of the course is the same, so it was just time to hammer. I started getting better at the turns as the laps wore on. I felt OK at the 5 mile mark with an average os 294 watts. The curves did keep it interesting. You had to focus and see how tight you can hold the turns and still keep your speed up.
After that, it was pretty tough sledding. My mouth got really dry. The weather was really good: 77 deg and low humidity. Maybe the air being dryer than what I'm used to didn't help, but it was just an inconvenience. There was more traffic in the first 5 miles, as people were finishing up, but then it started to thin out some.
Watts were tough to come by in the second half and my averaged for the second 5 miles dropped down to 278 watts. My cadence remained constant throughout at 94 rpms. The 3rd and 4th laps were tough, even though I had gotten the hang of the turns, my watts were dropping off, so overall I was slowing down.
Then of course in the final lap, you know you are almost done, so you can really hammer. After the 10 mile split, for 1 min and 43 sec, I averaged 334 watts to bring it home. After I crossed the finish line, I was spent. I was breathing super hard. I coasted all the way back to the garage where we were set up, still breathing hard. I got off my bike and my legs felt like two stiff boards. I walked around a little bit and snagged some water.
Splits (2.17 miles per lap for 10.85 miles total) It wasn't 2.26 miles per as the map states, maybe because of the chicanes we omitted.
1) 4:40.10 (27.89)
2) 4:47.80 (27.14)
3) 4:52.10 (26.74)
4) 4:53.00 (26.66)
5) 4:42.80 (27.60)
27.20 mph overall average
I eventually walked back over to the start/finish line to get a printout of my time and place. I took a little bit for mine to be available. In the meantime, I got to meet BSR Pam for the first time. After I got my placing, we headed over to get some BSR team pics with Pam and Erik.
|Big Sexy Teammates|
I ended up with an overall average of 290 watts. Not too bad, although last year I was at 300 watts. I didn't rest up for this race at all and came off a hard week of training, so I can't really complain. Full results here.
|A little Social Media Shoutout|