After far too long away from the bike, I’ve kick started my year with several shorter rides and so far, so good! Positive mental attitude is a wonderful thing, as is a new year and a new start, and it’s definitely time to capitalise on both. I made a big commitment to leaving illness and fatigue behind me and in 2012. 2013 is going to be the comeback year! But with so many possible routes, which is the right one?
For the past decade I’ve focused on Mountain bike to the exclusion of all other types of racing, but last year I branched out and did my rookie year on the road – the crashes were big and far too frequent! Basically I now realise I was trying to race my unfamiliar road bike in the same way as my trusty mountain bike, so for 2013 I’m going to slow it down a bit on the road and go back to basics.
My road riding and racing will support my mountain bike and ‘cross racing this year with the focus going to the National and Southern mountain bike series and then next winter, the London ‘Cross League. With those races being the basis for my year I’ll then throw in some road races and a couple of triathlons for good measure as well as using the road bike to train on.
I’m not abandoning the road, quite the opposite – by taking the emphasis off road cycling I’ll have time to actually learn how it works properly without the stress of racing for points. As all of those races will be entered mainly for the fun of the event I’ll be able to focus on how things get done in a peloton as oppose to the “attacking” style that I employed for all of last year. Attacking is fine if you have the skills to finish but, as I proved to myself last year, I have bags of passion and attack, but not enough “roadcraft”!
A couple of TT and sprint triathlons will keep my season interesting and of course one or two 24 hour mountain bike races are worth looking forward to. But if I’m honest the thing I’m most excited about is getting back to mountain bike racing. There have been a lot of changes in the last few years, with shorter races and bigger wheels becoming standard and I’m excited about building up an all new race bike to attack the new style of courses with. Being a bit old fashioned I’m going to have to add my own little touches to the new technology to get everything just right for me!
I’m also looking forward to all the trail riding that comes with training for racing. This time of year a foggy commute is the standard kind of ride I can expect with maybe a longer road or ‘cross ride at the weekend, but come summer I’ll be back blasting through the dusty singletrack and there is nothing that fires me up as much as racing or riding new trails – it’s going to be a lot of fun!
Stay tuned for updates on the bike build and for how the season goes!
Glen runs THE.TRIBECA.SPORT.WØRKSHOP which is based at 28 London Road, Southborough, TN4 0QB – 01892 533 339 – email@example.com . The shop specialises in precision servicing, race prepping, 3D bike fitting and high quality bikes and equipment. Drop in, give us a call, visit our Facebook page or browse our website for more details. He also runs the shop race team and club as well as racing ‘cross, road and cross-country nationally.