A long 653 km racing task today that the winners completed in 4:08 at 157.8 km/hr. We started too early today at 14:11 while the others started around 14:21 and then caught us about an hour later.
It is amazing what difference 10 minutes can make in a start time. We had trouble finding good climbs and I was down to 3300 ft before the first turn and then ran the second leg between 4-5000 as we headed north into the hill country. Just before the second turn I finally had a climb that took me to 6000. As we ran along into the hills, Jerzy was about 800 ft above me and he connected with a thermal that I didn’t get at my altitude and he was able to run ahead of me. We found the thermals very disorganized down low, but once above 6000 they improved.
I rounded the northern most turnpoint and then the legs started to align with the wind and I was able to bump and run along streets. On the way south, I was able to get ahead of the group who had caught me and by the time I reached the fifth turnpoint to the east, I had caught up with Jerzy again, but was still 1000 ft lower. The leg to the southern turnpoint was across the wind, so I jumped from street to street and on occasion found myself lower than I would like. Now that we were out of the hills and the day more developed, the thermals down low were much better and I was able to consistently climb away.
After rounding the last turnpoint the streets aligned well with the leg home. I stopped once for 2 turns, gained 650 ft and then bumped the rest of the way to the finish. The final leg today was 148 km in 44 minutes at 201.9 km/hr.
But, the amazing stat for today is 3.5 minutes cost 10 places on the day, ouch!