I remember my first road race. It was up Rabbit Ears pass in Steamboat Springs Co. I realize now that bike racing on courses with 8 mile climbs are pretty simple. It is all decided on the climb so all you need to do is get to the climb in as good as shape as you can, and then go as hard as you can…for as long as you can. At the top of the pass you see if anyone else is around to ride with, if not then hammer on till you can’t go anymore and hope you finish well. That is what I love about cycling, it is just like life. You seldom know how it will turn out, you set your goal, you work to prepare, and then you race. Only the racing will tell you what you really want to know, it is how you find out how good you really are and what you need to keep working on.
I wrote my first bike racing manual in 1998 when I had retired from racing, here is a picture of the cover: It is short and to the point, getting down what I consider the key points to racing well. They are what worked for me and what I learned from my previous coaches and following my cycling path for 11 years after college. It is called “Warm in the Head. A racers handbook” which is a phrase I heard in Europe racing there with the national team in 1990 during the Tour d la Avenir. Now I know it means “fever” for cycling, and it makes me laugh because that is what I see in people who love cycling, a fever for the sport.
My fever has changed over the years,