Who remembers that little thing we did in February called the Race to Anyplace? I know it's been awhile since I said the race report would be up, but after all that time…here it is!
Race to Anyplace 2012 Race Report
No matter how well the Space Monkey Mafia prepares each year, there is always something that surprises us. Last year we showed up in the morning and found out that we had been placed in the wrong division. The petals on our bike did not have clips and we spent a desperate half hour trying to find a set that did. Once we were on the bikes moving we noticed that our computer was displaying kilometers per hour instead of miles per hour!
This year I promised the team that I would get a head start and scope out the venue the day before. When I go to the Steel Towner on Friday afternoon, the YMCA bikes were set up. I found our two, saw the petals were correct, computers were working and headed home.
When I arrived in the morning, the other bikes had been set up and they were all CycleOps! This was not good, since my goal was to get more mileage than any other team there (not just in our division). The problem is that the CycleOps bikes do not have a locked in wheel, meaning that someone can petal as hard as they can, then stop and let the wheel coast for awhile, then kick back in with the pedaling. This is great for true cyclists trying to mimic training on the road, but not so good for races like this. You can't really compare the results from a fixed wheel bike (like the one our teams used) to those of a free wheel.
At that point, we decided to focus solely on winning the division, which we did!
I had mapped out the goal distances and speeds that each team member need to ride in order for us to reach a mileage that I thought would be sufficient for victory. The only trouble was that the computers on our bikes didn't show miles per hour. No problem, I thought, they do show RPM and that is actually what we trained off of. So, when Jack go on of his first ride and all of a sudden we didn't see RPMs, I didn't know what to think!
It turns out that after a certain RPM level is reached (140) the computer tells you to slow down! The idea being that you would never ride at such a high cadence in real life, so you really shouldn't be riding that high on a spin bike (unless of course doing a race like the Race to Any Place). At that point the rule became "just don't let any numbers show up on the computer." –Jack was on hand to enforce that rule.
During the race, things went extremely well for both teams. Here is a quick overview.
Space Monkey Mafia Elite
I killed it again this year, putting up a total of 24.2 miles (but what else would you expect?). Chuck was right behind me mileage wise at 22.7, followed by Nate at 22.2 (then went for a short 20 mile run in North Park). Alan, who was pulled in from the Rivers Club for the first time this year, and Lia from LA Fitness both put up 22 miles. Most of us said that it felt easier the second time, however looking at the numbers below it was apparent that we all slowed down on our second leg. Jody was the only one to move faster and I assume that Jack was in front of her yelling the entire time! Maybe next year we will experiment with putting a half hour between rides and see if that impacts each rider's first distance vs. second distance.
I'd like to also call out Vicki, Jack, Nicole, Mia, Gary & Amy for putting up some impressive numbers that help drive us to victory!
Space Monkey Mafia (JV)
How crazy is it that this year's JV team put up more mileage than last year's elite team? Must be the kick ass training they received in Spin class (let's be honest, it's the only plausible explinatoin).
Most of our JV team riders matched the distances of the elite team riders! The chart below only shows the riders who did two legs or more on the JV team. Check out Gary H who rode a total of 4 legs and put up 20.5 miles on the first two, and a total of 20.1 miles on the last two. Nice work bro!
Pete lead the pack with 21.5 miles, followed by Nicole (who had already rode for the Elite team), then Jack (also coming of an Elite team ride), Janice, Kelly, Pradip & Pat. I'd like to point out that both Janice & Kelly said something along the lines of "we're just doing this for fun right?" Well, thanks to some pressure from the team (and Jack), they both turned up the heat!
All in all, every member of our teams put up more average miles than anyone else in the race. Pradip & Pat had very impressive rides as well and I hope everyone who competed this year will be back next year!
The Elite team took first place in the YMCA division, finally beating the Penn Hills team by about 4 miles. Our JV team came in 4th place out of 10 total teams. Again, it's hard to compare overall times because of the difference in bikes. Westinghouse1 took first place in the Spin Open Division with 269.6 miles, but had our team ridden on the independent wheel bikes it wouldn't have even been close!
Thanks again to everyone who raced. We raised nearly $2,000 for the cause and I can't wait to start training for next year's race!
Overall standings are available on the Race to Any Place website here.