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Hard and Fast - Crit/RR/Track Training Ride

Posted: 15 Dec 2016 15:55
by StuartWhite
Hi All,

I will open this up on Facebook in due course, but thought I'd get the interest of the Beacon massive first.

Ade mentioned recently about some on road close proximity riding in prep for the new year, so let's get on it.

I suggest we start with a small circuit (I already have one in mind for the first week) but I'd be happy to alternate this each week based on peoples idea's. We'll specifically be working on through and off along a decent stretch with a corner involved to get some 2 up negotiation involved.
We'll then gently spin the remainder of the loop to allow anybody off the back to catch up then repeat.
This isn't a long loop so will provide plenty of efforts so can also count in as an interval session, hell, maybe we'll even have a sprint on the last run ;)

The Star City sprint loops will start up in January so it'd be good if we could get a couple of these in before then.

Tuesday's is Hills night
Wednesday is Red Lion night
and we all got stuff to do over the weekend so Monday or Thursday?
(preferably Thursday).

Posted: 15 Dec 2016 16:58
by John
I'd say Thursdays are preferable for me. Mondays are the traditional rest day.

Posted: 15 Dec 2016 17:06
by StuartWhite
Mondays are rest day for me also so I'd prefer Thursdays

Posted: 15 Dec 2016 17:28
by laurence_cooley
I'd like to keep Monday as a rest day too. Thursdays are my other rest day at the moment, but that's only really because I had commitments that kept me at work late this past term, but I won't have those commitments from now on. Thursday would also allow a rest or easy day on Friday ahead of Saturday morning's Sette ride.

Posted: 15 Dec 2016 19:04
by IanT
This is a good idea, I'd be up for it - Thursday also best for me.


Posted: 15 Dec 2016 19:08
by Tim
Thursday best for me

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 09:45
by GavPass
Thursdays are good for me.... can we pick somewhere with plenty of roadsigns :twisted:

I always used to do the star city loops and they were perfect training for racing and bunch sprints.... a confidence I've lost in recent years. My only gripe with them is the traffic near the start around spitfire island and the lack of awareness of some of the riders near the start

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 10:28
by Tim
Only ever done star city once, wasn't 100% happy with safety of both ride there and route and jumping of lights by riders but only done once several years ago. My experience wasn't helped by a minor mechanical on first lap!

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 10:49
by StuartWhite
I was thinking 2 weeks of this then when Star City starts up we can give that a whirl.

Let's start next Thursday for 2 weeks - meet at the bottom of Hopwood at the bus stop on the left before the roundabout (if you're headed out of town) just past the petrol station, at 7pm.

Route Below (this is a counter-clockwise route as per track, and most UK crit and road races).

We'll start with this loop as a tester, but happy to change it up the following week if anybody has another similar loop in mind.

The loop is about 5 miles long so will allow us a long effort with a recovery, so we're under strain whilst working together. If anybody loses contact on the longer straight we have a good recovery section to get back together.

The idea isn't to drop people, but getting us working together to achieve a high yet sustainable speed.

As we come out of Alvechurch we'll begin to pick up the pace headed towards the bypass, approaching the roundabout with the intention of stopping (should we need to give way) we'll put a progressive effort in along the length of the bypass, we'll then regroup on the other side of the roundabout before turning left and heading back down to Alvechurch.
On the last loop (and possibly a few before if we manage to get organised) the bridge can be the finish line for a closing sprint at the end of bypass.

Sprint rules:
- We're already likely to be taking up a lane of the bypass, under no circumstances are you to cross the white line and use the outside lane - clear or not. This will also be good practice for road racing proper next year.
- If you're going to contest the sprint, you'll be expected to come through on every rotation of the through and off, not hiding to preserve your power for the 'win'. It's a training ride after all, make it hard for yourself.

All good?

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 10:58
by GavPass
Looks good captain...

I'm due to be on the beers next thursday eve, but am off during the day. Are people available to do it earlier???

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 11:11
by petemarshall
Stuart, a key coaching point from the Stourport sessions that covered nearly every rider and is something you may want to address on these rides was poor cornering particularly when doing through and off.
Majority of riders were breaking too late and too hard, scrubbing large amounts of speed off right into the corners and then having to accelerate hard out of them. On tight bends the compression effects of this on any groups made the situation even worse back in the group. Whilst this may be a useful tactic if you are at the front and want to tire others it's not good when working together.
Scrubbing speed earlier then pushing round the corner unless it's to tight to pedal can work better.
As I am sure you already know crits are won or more usually lost by a riders ability to hold speed into tight bends, whenever you get a chance to practice this go for it, but do keep it safe😁

Posted: 16 Dec 2016 11:15
by petemarshall
And get on a track on a fixed where pushing round a bend becomes second nature and if the banking is high enough required if you don't want an inelegant slide to the deck.

Posted: 17 Dec 2016 21:16
by dannewns
this sounds perfect, quick question as im not really to up on the area does anyone have a postcode I can drop in the nav to get there?


Posted: 18 Dec 2016 00:04
by StuartWhite
Bus stop just down from Hopwood House pub.

adj Ash Lane post code is B48 7TP

Posted: 18 Dec 2016 23:02
by Tim
Looks great but I can't do next two Thursdays. Enjoy!

Posted: 19 Dec 2016 21:59
by Yosser
1. Oooh that looks good, any other very old people up for that?
2. Do my turn on the front? I didn’t get where I am today by doing my turn on the front!
3. All these corners can be taken at high speed but all these junctions need to be approached with caution.
4. Proper crit technique and tactics means you go into corner and brake as late as poss, thus causing max disruption to the fellows behind in terms of losing corner speed, as Pete has stated. No need for that in training but in a race be aware of it. First rule of Crit racing, taught me by my Uncle Tone in 1968, get on the front at the start line, then just stay there. Guess where this simple plan breaks down.

Posted: 20 Dec 2016 09:32
by StuartWhite
Just a quick one on corners as I notice this has been mentioned a couple of times above.
Cornering is one of, if not the most important skill of crit racing, but this circuit is on an open road with all major corners being a potential give way.
Intensive and tschnical corner training, whilst practising proper lines, bike lean threshold, braking etc is best saved for off road circuits such as Tudor Grange or Stourport.
That said, if we struggled to get on either of those for whatever reason, if Pete's up for it in the new year we could set up a corner specific session on a car park or playground somewhere - banish those bike leaning demons. Let's not get carried away with that right now though.

Through and off Thursday, so far I count;

Nice session to get some turkey credits in before the weekend y'know.

Posted: 20 Dec 2016 15:39
by GavPass
sorry, but I'll most likely be drunk by then... aim to be out next week

Posted: 20 Dec 2016 23:38
by rob64
This sounds great. I'll be missing this week unfortunately but definitely in next week and there onwards (I need to get better at checking the message board, only just came across this via facebook :oops: )

Posted: 22 Dec 2016 13:20
by IanT
I'm probably not going to make it in time tonight, hoping to be there next week if not.


Posted: 22 Dec 2016 17:21
by dannewns
Really sorry im not going to be able to make it tonight just had a tonne of work thrown on me needed to be finished by tomorrow. :(

Posted: 29 Dec 2016 10:51
by StuartWhite
It doesn't look like it's going to warm up much today so I'll only be there tonight if we have a reasonable amount of interest.

Merry Chrimbo

Posted: 29 Dec 2016 13:30
by GavPass
Too slippy for me, I'm off to see Starwars instead :D

Posted: 29 Dec 2016 14:50
by rob64
misjudged my plans and I can't make it out tonight I'm afraid. Also I hit the deck this morning on some ice, although that was due to the stupid decision of going down a little lane, main roads felt pretty clear.

Posted: 29 Dec 2016 16:04
by laurence_cooley
I've only just got back to Birmingham after Christmas ten minutes ago and have to do food shopping, etc., so it'll be the turbo for me.

Posted: 29 Dec 2016 16:30
by StuartWhite
That's cool, we'll put it on the back burner for this week

Posted: 03 Jan 2017 14:57
by rob64
Any thoughts on doing the session this week? Weather forecast is claiming 1 degree on Thursday evening... may be worth putting off for another week if there's no change.

Posted: 03 Jan 2017 15:05
by StuartWhite

With what I'd consider to be 'a lucky escape' last week, then a few riders taking a spill yesterday, I'm inclined to agree that we should hold off again this week.
No point training for racing if you end up too injured to actually race.

The Star City Loops will start up again soon so we'll see if it's necessary to run both sessions then.

Posted: 03 Jan 2017 16:38
by dannewns
Hi Stuart

when you say star city loops, do you mean just laps around star city area or is there some kind of track? also thanks for the update on this week. the weather has taken a bit of a sad turn hasnt it :(


Posted: 03 Jan 2017 16:52
by StuartWhite
Hi Dan,

This is the segment, usually has a couple of sprints:

Posted: 11 Jan 2017 09:23
by laurence_cooley
The Star City laps start tonight, starting at 18:45 from Costco on the A47. It's a shame that they clash with the Red Lion ride, but I think Star City might be a better option tonight given the weather today and the mess it will cause in the lanes.

Posted: 11 Jan 2017 18:11
by Yosser
I'm intrigued Laurence, what on earth is the traffic like around Spaghetti Junction and Tyburn Rd at that time of night. I used to hate driving around there coming home from work let alone commuting and as for training....

Posted: 11 Jan 2017 21:34
by laurence_cooley
Yosser wrote:I'm intrigued Laurence, what on earth is the traffic like around Spaghetti Junction and Tyburn Rd at that time of night. I used to hate driving around there coming home from work let alone commuting and as for training....
It's usually a bit busy on the first lap, but it calms down after that. It helps that the circuit is almost all left turns at roundabouts (some of them with a protected lane that takes you left without having to worry about traffic from the right).