Nature Valley Grand Prix Stage 1: St. Paul Time Trial

16 Jun

The alarms went off at 5:50am.  Ouch.  That’s 4:40am Colorado time.  We woke up to wet pavement, pouring rain, and chilly temperatures.  Ugh.  After a quick breakfast, we left for the start of Stage 1.

The Course: We pre-rode the 6.1mile time trial course.  It was the same as it has been the last 4 years I’ve raced here.  It’s always nice to pre-ride a time trial so you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.  The course was wet with several big puddles.  It runs along the Mississippi river and is very covered my trees.  Even if it had stopped raining, the course would’ve taken forever to dry.  The road seems to get worse every year.  Lots of pot holes and deteriorating surface.  Minnesota winters will do that though!  The course was pretty straight forward.  Out and back.  Then up a hill at the finish.

Equipment: Time trial bikes, helmets, wheels, etc. have been banned from this event for the past two years now.  They say it helps level the playing field.  It would be fun to do it on a time trial bike though, especially with nationals being next week.  It is was it is though.

My Race: I’ve never figured out the technique for the course, other than just go as hard as you can.  I felt like I emptied my tank more than I have in the past, as the hill was super hard to go up.  My calves were cramping the last 3/4 of the race.  I am blaming it on the cold.  I got in an okay warm-up, but my muscles weren’t having it.  My 30second girl dangled in front of me the entire time.  I could tell I was slowly catching her, but never caught her.  Amber Rais, the girl 30seconds behind me, closed in on me but never caught me.  I finished with a time of 15:37, putting me in 20th overall.  I don’t think there was much I could do differently about my race, so I was satisfied with my time.

The Team: Evie and Amber put in some smoking fast times.  Evie finished 2nd with a time of 14:53 and Amber was 4th with a time of 14:59.  Kristin Armstrong was on a different level and crossed the line with a 14:30.  Ally and Chloe both road very respective times.  We have a lot of cards to play over the week, and it’s going to make for some fun racing.

Thanks for reading!  More updates to come!


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