Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Stage 2 - ATOC- San Fran To Santa Cruz- Ian Boswell rides strong again!

Stage 2- Amgen Tour of California

Day: Mon, May 14
Start: San Francisco
Finish: Santa Cruz County
Miles: 117.1
KM: 188.5

Rider: Ian Boswell- Trek- Livestrong Team
Power Meter: SRAM Quarq Red

Power Analysis Software: TrainingPeaks WKO+
TrainingPeaks WKO+ File hosted here

Coach: Hunter Allen

Finish: 61st place 5:02 –Front group

Stage 2 from San Francisco to Santa Cruz was all about conservation of energy along the coast and then riding near the front on the climbs toward the end of the stage.   Empire Grade is a climb to be respected as Bear Creek.  Both average 6%  gradient, but Empire grade is much longer and Ian climbed it in the front group of elite pros in 31:30, averaging 11.9 mph, 367 watts (normalized) and 85 rpm.   

Stage 2 was very similar in difficulty for Ian as compared to Stage 1.    In the jaunt from San Francisco to Santa Cruz, Ian scored 252 Training Stress Score points, did 4031kiloJoules of work (about 4400 kilocalories burned), and his normalized power for the day was 296 watts.   Oh, that 296 watts average?   It was for 5 hours and 2 minutes….   Just remember that when you go out on your next training ride!

Ian is riding superbly right now, has good form and can be in the hunt for a stage win and possibly a top position for the best U23 rider as long as he time trials well. On the climb up Empire Grade, only the first ten minutes were hard(401watts Normalized) , but even for Ian this was under his Functional Threshold Power(FTP), again confirming his excellent condition as it’s always great when you can ride at the front and be under your FTP!

One of the things that I have been impressing upon Ian is that stage racing is a game of energy conservation and the riders that can save their energy throughout each stage will be stronger in the latter stages as this energy conservation accumulates over the race and rewards the smarter racers in the final stages.  Ian made me proud today as he did a great job at “NOT” pedaling, sitting in the peloton, coasting, resting his legs and allowing the peloton to suck him along.  He did NOT pedal for nearly an hour of the 5 hour race!   He coasted for a total of 53 minutes or 17% of the stage, and this is right above the magic 15% number that the winning-est road racers exhibit time after time in their power files.   

In the run-in to Santa Cruz, Ian clearly felt strong but lacked a bit of confidence as he followed an attack half-heartedly by Rory Sutherland and even though he didn’t give it his all it took the charging peloton nearly 3 minutes to catch him.  Wait.  Ian followed an attack, but did so half-heartedly in the final 4km before the finish with the Liqui-Gas team in full lead out mode and they still didn’t catch him till about a k and half to the finish???   Watch out.  If anything, that should build some confidence!  Next time, he’s got to go for it full gas and see what happens, but at the same time being careful to finish within the pack when you are going for a top 10 overall placing is a smart play too.

Stage 3 should be another good stage for Ian with Mt. Diablo and then Patterson Pass towards the end.  Mt. Diablo is no joke, but it’s very far from the finish, so doubtful that it will be a deciding factor in the stage finish, and Patterson Pass, while closer to the finish, is more open and gradual, so easier for a team to control the race.
Ian's Comments from his TrainingPeaks WKO+ file notes:

On 05/14/2012, Ian Boswell wrote Hard Start and took me a bit to warm up but felt better as it went on. On the first big climb-Empire Grade, I felt better as we got further on and went over the top in the front and rode the climb at the front, the start of the climb was hard then it became more steady. After a ripping descent, we started the 2nd climb it was harder but I felt good and rode at the front. I wanted to attack but Garmin was riding the front. Over the top we were in group and on the back side I went in an attack and you can see the efforts but it was short. We were brought back. On the final at 3km to go Rory Sutherland attacked and I went put after him. I opened a 10sec gap and was about 5 sec behind Rory. I made the mistake of looking back and feared being caught and thrown off the back so as you can see in the file I did not kill it. Maybe I should have but I also could have lost time. I was caught about 1.5km from the finish and finished in the pack. Ate a lot today 6 bars 3 things of chews and 2 gels. Helped in the end. Felt good when the race went hard and am looking for a win one of these days ***

[Downloaded into TrainingPeaksWKO+ Software and uploaded to TrainingPeaks.com 5/15/2012 6:34:06 AM]