velodrome track race - kissena queens new york

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Bike race #8.

Rollers. Wait by pool table. Rollers. Wait by pool table. Rollers. Wait by pool table. Rollers. Drink beer.

Last week I had the privilege to race on Dave Perry's fantastic italian rollers. Riding these feels like someone has lifted your bike and you're just riding on air.

The even was called "spillage in the village" and there was plenty of spillage. Race details as follows.

First qualifier, my back wheel taps the wall behind me. This sends me flying forward off the rollers. Bizarre. I'm allowed to redo the qualifier when this is pointed out to the official.

Second qualifier. Feels like I can only get 8 pedal strokes out before slipping off the rollers. No biggie. After I come off, I realize that the drums are still spinning at around 40mph when I try and rest my hands there.

First race. What the #$^&>? Why do they put me up against A. Lacorte? He's faster than me by a mile and in it to win. That makes me nervous. I get 3 pedal strokes out and fall off the rollers. Big disappointment for the crowd. But then I see Lacorte slow down to ride easy. This makes me a little angry, so I plop my bike back up on the rollers and I ride my legs off just so he doesn't get a free ticket.

Second race. My friend Tito is spotting me. I ask him to help me get a couple of test starts in. Things go a little more smoothly. The official asks us to get ready and we're off. After a few seconds, the crowd is in a serious frenzy, stomping the floors and banging the ceilings. We must be neck and neck I think. Tito tells me that the race is mine. I relax a little... and there is my big mistake. I am caught. After the race is over, I think I've won but the referee tells me that I would have won this heat if the race was 990 meters. Unfortunately the race was 1000 meters. I feel better after I get home when I find out that I lost to Dave Wiswell, a pretty good rider.

There are some videos and photos up at

Here's my race.

And videos of the crashes, including the one where I go flying forwards.

Is this really only race #8? Next roller race need to focus more on the smooooooth start than the jump start.

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