I raced my first endurance mountain bike event this past Saturday, the Wilmington White 100k and would be really interested in some feedback from experienced racers on my data. Wilmington Whiteface 100 is a lot of gravel roads, a little paved road, and then some singletrack mixed in. It has numerous long sustained climbs and totals about 7600 feet of climbing. It is similar to Leadville but shorter and much lower altitude.
I’m 47, currently training at FTP of 255 but due to retest shortly and am anticipating at least some bump. I’m currently at 3.56 w/kg. I live at 900 feet elevation but I think Wilmington is only about 1100 ft, so I don’t think altitude played any role.
For my first race, everything went really smooth. No blow ups, cramps etc. Fluids and nutrition went fantastic with a mix of Skratch, Maurten, Cliff Bars and SIS gels, all practiced ahead of time. I had one mechanical issue that turned out was an overtightened rear derailleur that kept me from using my two smallest cogs on the rear cassette, so lost a little speed on some of the downhills/flats where I was spinning out, but I don’t think it impacted things that much.
I finished in 5h 27min, 141/344 Overall and 54/126 for age group, so solidly midpack. Not bad for first race…
I was 206/349 at the split and moved up to 141/344 at the finish, so had a strong second half pulling past a lot of riders. My pace was nearly identical in both halfs, 4:49 min/mile in first half and 4:50 min/mile in second half.
Avg Power: 167
I tried to be as steady as possible and kept an eye on my power meter throughout most of the race. I avoided big spikes in power for the most part on the road. The only time I really ignored it was on the single tract sections where I just rode to my abilities and let things flow unless stuck behind another rider. I felt strong in the closing miles although the very last climb was a bit of a bear, but it was one of the toughest on the course. I was not spent at the end and pretty much felt fine, so I’m wondering if I should have pushed harder?
- Was this good pacing or should I have pushed a little harder?
- Is IF of 0.8 about right for an event of this length/duration?
- Tactically, holding back a little at the start might have ended up separating me from some of the similar level riders. I had a bit of a hard time finding good groups to draft with on the flats, especially in the second half.
- I am headed to Leadville in August, so this was really a bit of test run. I know I still have a lot of work to do between now and August, but I at least feel I’m on pace for things. The Wilmington time gets me bumped up to Green Coral too.
I did ride a fairly relaxed solo road century on Monday (Memorial Day) as a final long ride before this event. This was pan flat and I had a NP of 191, average power of 180, IF of 0.75, and a time of 5 hours even. So these numbers were pretty close to Wilmington.