Cajon Pass Circuit Race by Peter Rinde

Cajon Pass Circuit Race Peter Rinde (Cat 4/5)

After nearly 5 months since the shoulder injury resulting in an AC separation, it was time to get back into my inaugural year of racing.  As far as timing goes, it just chanced that getting the ok to race coincided with the final weekend of local racing in the LA area.  This was also the inaugural race as a Cat 4 as I had just upgraded prior my injury.

Cajon Pass circuit race, “not a crit,” but like a crit, was 8 laps of a mile out and back, double U-turn course in the summer heat near the San Bernardino mountains just north of Fontana.  Promoter states that it is not a crit b/c there is no free laps.  Temperature was forecast to be in the 100’s.  Knowing the race and heat would demand it, I quickly consumed a PowerBar Performance Energy Blend and PowerBar PowerGel 15 minutes before the start of the race.The race started a bit timid, with the exception of fellow racer Todd Moore and a junior who quickly took a breakaway from the pack.  Fellow racer Torsten Zorn, another racer, and I took a lap leading the rest of the pack, but I know I was quickly fading and communicated to Torsten that I would be dropping back and reserving some energy.  This strategy worked for 4 more laps until after the 5th lap in which the pace picked up and riders began to drop.  With 2 natural slight climbs at both ends of the course, I began to fade after the 6th lap in which I worked too hard to stay with the now smaller pack halfway through the 7th lap.  At the turn, the remaining pack of 20+ riders pulled away, leaving me alone to chase.  Still several hundred feet away on the final lap, I couldn’t catch the lead pack but did rejoice in that Todd Moore held on to a 6th place finish, Torsten to a 12th, and I finished 26th out of 37.  Welcome to Cat 4 racing.
Thanks to PAA, the ReMax team of Pete and Lisa Loeffler, Louis Garneau, and PowerBar for all their support!