The first race of the season is always an unknown: you don’t know how your legs will feel, you don’t know how hard your rivals have been training, and you don’t know if you’ll remember all the important little details like when to eat and drink. Jameson and I both put in a lot of hours on the bike this winter, so we were anxious to see whether or not we’d be on form for the Morgantown Road Race. We were ready to tackle the unknowns.
A bit of a misnomer, the race is held in Mt. Morris, PA, which is just outside of Morgantown, WV. We did this race last year, and that ended well for Jameson, but painfully for me (I had zero legs last March).
We set off early Saturday morning, stopping briefly in Frederick to pick up Marcos, a teammate of Jameson’s on ISM. We arrived at the course to find beautiful, sunny conditions without much wind. Spring was finally in the air after what seemed like the longest winter ever (my apologies to the Midwest contingent; may the recent snow melt quickly).
Jameson and Marcos rolled out with the 1/2/3 field and onto the 45-mile loop that comprised the course. Their field boasted a full roster of Kelly/LSV riders, which was sure to make it an aggressive race. Marcos made it into an early break, so Jameson rode the race “just waiting for something to happen.” He commented later that he wished he had been more aggressive, because his legs felt great, and the hilly course suited him. Marcos successfully sprinted for 5th place and landed a podium spot, and Jameson ended up finishing with the pack. Great day for ISM, and Jameson was glad to know his legs were where they should be.
My race gave me a bit of a surprise when the promoters rolled all 12 of the 1/2/3 women off the line with the 40-some-strong Master’s field. Guess I should have looked at the info a little more closely! It was fun, for a change, to be on a road racing course in such a big group, and for the most part, the Master’s racers were polite to the women. On the first big climb, I stayed with the top racers in my group, but didn’t have the legs for the last little pitch. I proceeded to weave through the carnage of the Master’s field for the rest of the race, sliding nicely into a 7th place finish. I was exceedingly pleased, because the podium was occupied with strong racers such as Katherine Giles and Stephanie Swan.
After the race, we visited a race sponsor, Rising Creek Bakery, for the best sandwiches and baked treats. Hungry cyclists were hungry no more!
Looking forward to the rest of the race season, and excited to see my training starting to pay off.