Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

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bmullin
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Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby bmullin » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:25 pm

I finally got my race season started on Saturday at the Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet in Minneapolis. I wrote a bunch of words about it on the CyclovaXC blog.

http://www.cyclova.com/2014/01/pre-loppet-2014-race-report.html

I see Jay's name in the results. I'm hoping to hear how his race went as well.

Ben

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby MN Hoser » Mon Jan 13, 2014 8:51 pm

Ben, I love your energy. Keep analyzing the data, improving, thinking about pacing, etc. I love it. The course rewards a fast start (and screws others), so good job coming from 10th row.

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby MN Hoser » Tue Jan 14, 2014 8:54 pm

Usually the third race of the season is about when I start to race a bit faster or at least feel better. I'm not much for doing intervals, speed work, any of that, so I need some racing to get the conditioning going. I had a good 1:45 workout on Thr and did a pick up for 3-4 minutes and felt good.

I'm working on getting a set of new skate skis up to racing speed. I prepped that set on the cold side (lets see...Star LA6, Holm HF Blue, Holm Mid-08 (block-corked) and then Holm Mid (block-corked). A second set was Holm HF Red, Rex TK37 (corked) and Start 92 (block-corked). Predicted temps were for the low 20s (19-20-21F) but the actual temp in the morning was 26 and it was super humid (almost foggy). Skiing, I couldn't tell a difference between the skis an hour before the race. Just before the start, I stood on each, shuffled the skis, and the second set (warmer wax job) definitely felt better.

I lined up front row (crowded) and virtually the whole row had Fischer skis except for a few guys on the left side. I saw the same thing at the first race of the season. I was pretty careful coming out of the start, and saw one crash to my right at some point in the rollout. It was pretty crowded in the first woods loop, and I finally got loose by speaking up and going down the left near the end of the initial woods section.

I passed Brockman on the first major uphill (my age group) in the artificial snow section, and chased a pack that was a long way up the trail. I hit it hard for...oh...2 km and then started realizing I wasn't going to catch those guys. So, after 4 more climbs, I let John take over. (I was gassed.) He caught a young guy, and then I took over and lead a group of probably 4 guys. At times I felt like I was gapping the guys, but other times, they were right on me. I led through the end of the race because it was clear no one wanted to take over. I was worried about everyone dropping me like a bad habit on the lake before the finish, but only Beste went around (easily I might add). So I held off the pack in the "sprint of the old guys."

When asked at the finish, I said I had a good race without realizing where I stood against other racers. My skis were great, I was able to push hard and recover from pushing hard, and seemed like I inflicted some pain on the other guys following me. That was enough to call it a good race. (Later that night, the results seemed to back up my initial feelings.)

Race day I drove up to the Birkie Trail, uploaded, and then did a classic ski comparing two pairs of skis. It was a beautiful evening, warm, no wind, good kick with special violet, and great glide. My comparison didn't tell me a thing since the conditions were perfect for classic skiing, but the ski was well worth it. (And kicked my ass. I had a hard time sleeping.)

Sunday was a long skate (2:45) where I ran into a few friends on the trail. The trail is in great shape. It has some tree debris from high winds breaking loose crap, but the snow last night should cover that. Near the powerlines, I ran into a rollerskiing friend and skied the second half of the workout with him and his buddies. At "OO" I ran into another friend and talked to him for a few km about the Sisu race in Ironwood. Anyway, good weekend.

Jay

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby bmullin » Wed Jan 15, 2014 1:27 pm

Thanks for the report Jay!

Just to be clear about rewarding a fast start, I assume you are referring to the bottleneck and difficulty in passing and not some pacing strategy. I definitely thought about it, but I was nervous about going out and blowing up right away and was almost counting on the traffic keeping me in check. The flip side is freaking out about being stuck and burning a ton of matches passing people.

Ben

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Don Callander » Thu Jan 16, 2014 7:22 am

It is interesting that Jay used three different wax manufacturers on his faster pair. Anyone else mix and match?

Don

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Montana » Thu Jan 16, 2014 9:55 am

Don Callander wrote:It is interesting that Jay used three different wax manufacturers on his faster pair. Anyone else mix and match?

Don

I've heard of more than a few folks doing this. But you need to be very experienced with each brand and how they interact with one another. Jay is one of those very experienced folks and he also prepares more than one pair of skis for a race just in case.
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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby MN Hoser » Thu Jan 16, 2014 5:06 pm

From following Nathan and Zach, it sounds like they pick the fastest paraffin, then the fastest powder, then the fastest top coat regardless of brand. I assume that they're doing the same thing on the world cup. I'm basically guessing (from reputation and experience) at what will be fast, and I usually try to wax one pair somewhat colder than the other. Even then it can be hard for me to tell the difference. I have a feeling the Start 99 block (warmer) would have been faster then the 92, but it was fricking cold a few days before the race, and I thought the snowpack may hold some of that.

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby MN Hoser » Thu Jan 16, 2014 8:36 pm

...oh, and Montana. You know this stuff. Weren't you the one who wrote the "Wax book?"

Jay

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Don Callander » Fri Jan 17, 2014 4:54 am

Jay:
whatever waxes were used the times were wicked fast! I could only achieve those times on a bike....with a tailwind...going downhill. BTW congrats on another age group win.

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Blah » Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:09 pm

No need to worry about any "interaction" between wax brands. If you can get some unbiased info about each brand from a experienced tech I would suggest getting each brands BEST waxes rather than an entire line that may include some duds. My line of course has zero duds and every wax is the best ;)

Evan

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Blah » Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:11 pm

Definitely a SFR 99 day Jay. It was lights out at US Nationals almost every team out there was running that as their block.

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Re: Peace Coffee Pre-Loppet 1/11/2014 - Race Report

Postby Montana » Fri Jan 17, 2014 1:53 pm

MN Hoser wrote:...oh, and Montana. You know this stuff. Weren't you the one who wrote the "Wax book?"Jay

Actually, Bert Kleerup wrote the book. I was one of many who helped in testing waxes. But that was some time ago now and waxes have changed a lot. They get pricier and faster.
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