Team Time Trial
This past Sunday was the team time trial. This is an event that no group of El Grupo riders has ever won against another team. However it has been a race that I have long wanted to win. I have wanted to win this race because I want to believe that the way we train and work creates us into the best team in the country. Teams are groups of individuals that believe, inspire and love one another so much that when they come together they become stronger as a unit then as individuals.
This is my whole goal with Team El Grupo to give each youth and coach the undeniable feeling of love and support that a true team can only provide. This is what I am trying to do every day.
This past weekend Isaac, Jack, Matthew Riccitello, and Susie all raced at the State Champ Team Time trial together in the 10-14 co-ed category. They were very motivated to win this race and had the nerves to show. We started training for it at the Wilcox event we went to awhile ago. We worked for 66 miles on pace lining and communicating. After this we have been working on our time trialing to prepare. The day before the race we came together Jack, Isaac and Susie and they practiced and did 25 Russian turn arounds. A Fancy way of turning in a team time trial at the turn around. It was to be our secret weapon. We drilled it so many times we had the confidence to rock it. In the morning we taught Matthew how to do it and the secret weapon starting to really come together.
To accomplish our goal we were going to have to do everything right as a team. Jack, Isaac and Susie had all gone 38’s in their individual time trial a week before and Matthew had done a 33.31. They were a full 5 minutes slower than Matthew. To win we would have to go even faster than 33.31 as the Strada team had the fastest kid in the event on their team. He had beat Matthew the week before by over 2 minutes. The way the co-ed team event works is that three of the four team members have to cross the line and the clock stops when your female crosses the line.
We lined up first before the Strada team.
No areo equipement and 2 bikes from last century, but we were excited.
We had worked it out that we had to go over 22 mph at all times. Jack, Susie and Isaac had all averaged 19 mph by themselves. Well faster than the three had gone individually. Susie had been taped as the team leader and she was to call pulls and speed. On the way out they held the 22mph for the first 5km of the 20km event, then Jack and Susie started to come off. The team decided to bring things in and slow down, but to stay together. They did and at the turn around they perfectly executed the Russian Turn around.
On the other hand the Strada team had a different approach. They decided that they were only going to follow their strong man and let him do all the pulling. At the start they went off and their number 4 rider dropped within the first 2oo meters, a calculated move. Their plan was to just let the strong man do all the work and have the girl and other boy follow.
On the other hand we all took pulls and understood the speed we needed to go. Our kids all pulled, different lengths of time yes, but we stayed together as a team. After the turn around they came home together averaging over 26 miles per hour. Susie the whole time calling the shots and the other communicating when needed.
At the end of the race our team had gone a 33.27. They as a team came together and went faster than our strongest rider had gone the week before. A true team effort. Susie, Jack and Isaac all with the trust of their friends, all dropped 5 minutes from their time the week before. The power of team work had produced a wonderful result.
Once our team came in;
I started the watch to see if we be able to take the win.
Sure enough we would win the event by 4 seconds. By just hanging on to their strong man and not working as a team we were able to bring home the Championship.
These are the well earned smiles of kids who believed that as a team they could be greater than themselves. I am so proud to call myself their coach.
High School League
It is with the greatness that these kids produced that I want to inspire you the high school riders. I feel it is my job to help all of you believe in yourselves, your teammates and to help you come together to believe that together we can do anything we want. I know that we can, my question is can I help inspire you to do so?
This week I want us to focus on caring for each other and motivating each other to reach the goals we all aspire to.
I want to have everyone at practice tomorrow at 4pm. I would like to talk with everyone.
I have different plans for different riders this week as many of us have been on different paths the last week or so.
Tuesday: Road Bikes 4pm start. Mandatory meeting 4pm-4:30 then we ride. Please be on time if you can.
Wednesday: MTB 3:45 and 4:30
Thursday: MTB 4:30pm