Doing more Racing to get better at Racing

BBC February Meeting Minutes 2.19.2024
February 20, 2024
BBC March Meeting Minutes 3.18.2024
March 22, 2024

Planning out your racing year

As the season is underway, many of you who are newer to bike racing but coming from other sports know one thing very well: planning out your season and designating which race or races are you “A” level priority events is key to success at those priority events.  Coming from running?  Let’s say it’s December/January, you’re starting your training, and your A level event is the Buffalo Marathon.  You map out that you have 150 or so days until you hit your priority event, you plan out your training blocks, you get faster, you get better at holding your target pace in training.  Then you put it all together on race day.  While your best bet is to join a local running club to run with faster people, build camaraderie, and gain knowledge and insight on training to improve the most and have the best experience, there are plenty of people lining up at marathons who train entirely on their own.  Triathlon?  Similar thing.  While your best best is to join a club like the Buffalo Triathlon Club and participate in weekly training events to improve your fitness, practice your race strategy, and build camaraderie, there are also plenty of people lining up at triathlons who train on their own.


Lower priority events are important in cycling

In cycling, having a lot of non-priority races on your calendar is key to your development in the sport.  While you can try and replicate the pacing demands of a marathon run in training, it is quite difficult to replicate the demands of bike racing with training alone.  Training is super important for developing endurance, threshold, VO2Max, and sprint power and repeatability, but only racing itself can teach you about high-speed cornering, drafting in the pace line, how and when to attack, and learning the tactical dynamics of the field you’re racing in.


Why every training race is an opportunity

Being a student of this sport means taking every opportunity you can to get into a race environment to keep practicing those skills.  There are three main components of bike racing: the training, the piloting skills (cornering, drafting, holding a line, making split-second decisions), and the tactics (how and when to attack, feeling out if and when the breakaway might stick or if it will be a bunch sprint).  Doing other races in the lead up to your “A” races will make your A race go that much better.  You’ll know more about racing dynamics, and the races will expose you to more possible tactical situations and race outcomes.


How the BBC can help

Check out the BBC’s own Max Schneider and his YouTube channel “Bald Bearded Bicyclist” to see how over his first 3 years with the club, he has become a real student of the sport and learns from every race to apply those tactical situations to future races.


Practice, practice, practice is exactly what the BBC is here for!  Our Sunday Series Club Races and our Thursday Night Fireball Series are the perfect avenues to get in those practice races, practice being in different tactical situations, and build up your cornering and pack surfing skills.  The more you do, the better prepared you’ll be for your priority “A” race.


Here of course are some local suggestions for your A Race!




Buffalo Bicycling
Buffalo Bicycling
The Buffalo Bicycling Club was incorporated on April 6th, 1973. We are dedicated to the promotion and development of bicycle racing in Western New York.

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