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It might be helpful if someone knowledgeable could take a few minutes to
explain what is appropriate etiquette when overtaking another Cat. field
and support vehicles.
I am new to racing. At the King?s Valley race, I got dropped by the
lead Cat 4/5 field and was in ?no man?s land? or ?women?s land? for most
of the second lap. I think I handled it appropriately. I assumed that
if I was going to pass that I needed to do it aggressively. I got a
little bit confused when I had to swerve around the support vehicles.
The women kept a clear passing lane on the left for me. At one point, I
was catching the women?s field but I knew they would pass me on an
approaching hill climb. I felt like I was a little too close so I just
backed off to feed and drink. It was difficult in a race situation not
to speed up a little as a group or someone passes me.
The finish was a little challenging. There were about 4 of us that had
to hang out behind the women?s support vehicles towards the finish. It
was no big deal for me. I was not in contention for anything.
Apparently, we were following too close to the support vehicles. What
is the appropriate distance to ride behind a support vehicle in a
situation like that. In this situation, we were not going fast enough
to gain any significant drafting advantage.
In order to improve communication between officials and riders, I
observed a couple things.
For the riders: The official may be yelling out of the car because the
ambient road noise in the car seems loud. The official may not be
yelling in anger.
For the officials: Allow for some rider ignorance due to inexperience in
the Cat 4/5 field. A calm brief explanation can be very effective. If
a brief explanation is not possible at that time on the road, let the
rider know you will be available to answer any questions after the race.
It was a great race. Awesome course. Thanks to the promoters and OBRA.
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