Pro Cyclist Quotes

I’ve just been reading an interview with Dutch hard man Niki Terpestra.  Well known for his attacking riding and being an all round strong man, a couple of quotes from him resonated with me:

“You know sometimes I just have the feeling or thinking ‘why not?’ Instead of ‘why should I attack?’, it’s just ‘why attack – why not?'”

and

“I’m not a sheep in the group.  I mean, if there are two doors and everyone is standing in line for one door then I am going to check if the other door is closed….And if it’s closed I am going to look like a fool, ‘Yeah, yeah, get in line,’ but if it’s open…. I’m not afraid to try.”

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.  Terpestra has the legs to back it up of course but he’s right, if you want the best result in a bike race….don’t be a sheep.

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Cyclocross Starts, aka what to do when you’re not on the first row of the grid…

Getting a call up onto the first row of the grid means you’re in prime position to make the holeshot if you have the legs.  But what about if you are on the third or forth row of the grid?  Perhaps just making sure you get your foot in and away cleanly and then to make up the placings as the race progresses is all you can hope for .  But sometimes fitness and skill can move you up from a poor grid position into prime position very quickly.  This will still depend on the course and more than a little luck but be ready for when/in case it happens!

This is how to do it…1st 20seconds… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_gapb8BIL0&t=41s

So what can we learn from the video?  The shallow left hander had everyone moving over and it opened up on the right.  By not slowing too much and going in (slightly too) hot into the first corner and not being able to set up well for the right hander immediately after the rider made up a huge number of places and set themselves up for the rest of the race by getting to the front group.  It was a risk and could have resulted in them coming down at worst or just coming off line and having to brake hard to make the next turn (and then losing all those places they had made up) but on this course it paid off.

So, if you get a choice, always think about your grid position, even if you are on the last row.

Head Coach Nick wins State XC Mountain Bike Championships!

This past weekend, Head Coach Nick raced the Crafts and Cranks/California State Championships Mountain Bike Cross Country up in Big Bear.  This event had been one of three “A” races Nick had picked out at the beginning of the season.  He duly took the “W” and with it the State Champions jersey!

2018 CA State Champ Jersey

Speaking afterwards he said “I learned a lot from the last round of the Gold State series  that I raced here a few weeks back where I got passed and beaten into second in the last half mile;  I wasn’t going to make that mistake again.  Training has gone really well leading up to the event, I tapered well and came in feeling fresh and ready to go.  I’m absolutely stoked to win the Bear Jersey and will wear it with pride!”

Vincenzo Nibali’s cornering tips

I’ve just read a bunch of quotes from Vincenzo Nibali on cornering.  He’s known as one of the fastest descenders in the pro peloton so I guess he knows what he’s talking about.  This is what he says about taking back to back curves fast, always a difficult thing to do and get right:

If there’s a curve right after another, a couple of hairpins back to back, then it’s not the first curve that’s important but the second one.  With one right after another, then you need to take the first corner a lot looser – not so tight to the apex.  You need what is called a late apex.  You need to go as deep as you can beore the corner and slow down at a point further out.  If you ease up there, then you are going to take that second bend much quicker because you’ll have a straighter line through the two bends.

Here’s Nibali taking what looks like a much tighter line to two Sky riders (Wiggins and Froome I assume) from the 2012 Tour: