By now most of you know that if I have a nemesis race, it’s Gloucester. Each year it just doesn’t go quite right. I’ve tried to make peace, I’ve tried to cultivate my hatred but it all ends up the same. And this year was no exception. I was disappointed in my overall performances, but understood that it was not a surprise and I’m looking forward to this coming weekend in Providence, RI.
Gran Prix of Gloucester, Day 1
The weather was overcast with some morning showers. And for a minute, it looked like it may actually create some mud to play in. By the time my race went off at 2:30 in the afternoon, the track was dry, the humidity was brutal and the sun was coming out (of course). Gloucester! (Shakes fist).
The course itself was the most creative rendition of Gloucester that I have seen in many years. There was a soft dirt run up, a new set of small steps and some twists and turns to make the usually lightening fast course a bit more technical.
My legs were feeling a bit sore and fatigued from having just returned from a long trip and the race on Wednesday night (not to mention that I moved my office on Friday). I hoped that I would shake it out in the warm up laps, but off the start line, I was in a bad position and was immediately chasing to catch back to the leaders. Despite my best attempts to dig deep and really push, I stayed pretty much where I was with very little forward progression. I was 9th place at the end of the race, unhappy that I wasn’t able to place higher in the top 5.
Gran Prix of Gloucester, Day 2
I did my best to shake off the slump that Day 1 put me in. I put a positive spin on making the top 10 and being grateful for simply being able to race at all. It worked mentally in terms of perspective, but I still didn’t know if my legs were on board.
I had a much better start on Sunday and was able to stick with the lead group until the bottleneck on the long stair run up. Being a decent runner, I would have liked to stiff arm the other riders out of my way and pass them but the stairs were only wide enough for one person at a time and the jam allowed the top riders to get away.
I spent the rest of the race with a small group very close to the top 5 but never able to close down the gap. I finished in 8th place. Relieved to have Gloucester over with, I put my energy forward to the next two races in Providence.