The Tour de Kärnten was really good fun this year so we decided to hang another race onto the end of our holiday.
First we took a break for a couple of days and did another klettersteig near Finkenstein and then visited our favorite castle in the area (castle Finkenstein) for a tasty lunch. Then it was off to Lake Bohinj in Slovenia for an evening and the following morning. I caught up with Sebas, Sam, and Johannes there for some climbing as they were having a Slovenia weekend. Then it was off to Radstadt for the race.
It was on Sunday and began at 7:30 am. The weather was perfect and the route was pretty nice. We had entered the short course to save our legs a bit. It’s 95 km with 1500 m of climbing and the long course is 137 km with 2200 m of climbing. Also quite doable but I was hoping to be a bit more competitive than usual and since I’ve only been training on shorter distances it seemed more sensible to do the shorter course.
It looked like it would be a very fast course with the steeper climbs near the beginning. It was.
I was very happy how my legs went. They didn’t feel tired after the tour despite just two days rest. Infact, I think the tour helped.
Overall though I was frustrated by the race due to the start and the finish. We had entered late and they had put me in the second start block and weren’t keen to let me change when we arrived on Saturday evening. When I complained again before the race started on Sunday they allowed me to change but issued me a new number meaning I was running around chaotically trying to change numbers shortly before the race started. I did start in block 1 but by the time I got there I was well back from the front.
The first 2 km was supposed to be neutralized but it didn’t feel that neutralized blasting along at 50 km/h trying to catch up to the font. Of course it wasn’t possible to catch up to the front because that would mean I’d have to be significantly faster than them. I did pass a whole lot of people though and got into a rhythm so that once we had finished the first hill I had a strong bunch for the descent. It was frustrating though as I feel I could have had an even better bunch if I had started closer to the front and therefore a better finish (if I were able to hold on).
Anyway, the descents were good fun. After the first hills we had a very long downhill section down a valley. I worked up the front and enjoyed racing around the corners with the bunch strung out behind me or sitting on e.g. the third wheel near the front.
After a long time we had a gradual ascent. I wasn’t sure if I could hold the pace but managed too and as we got closer to the finish it looked like I’d hold on and not get dropped. We neared the finish and I tried to find a place nearish the front from which I could launch a sprint at perhaps the 200 m mark when prompted by the signs that all good races have before the finish…
And that was the problem. The bunch rolled along, the route pointed us onto the road that enters Radstadt and suddenly without warning the finish line was 20 m in front of us. Particularly bad for launching a sprint. Grrr… Annoyingly this cost me some places in the results…
Amadé Radmarathon 2017 – Short Course
Time: 2:47:12.6 Dst: 95 km / 1500m, Avg 33.8 km/h, Max 85.0 km/h
Place 40 / 91 Category, 55 / 219 Men overall