Last month, I discussed four basic steps to get you started for race tactics. This month we will discuss in more detail, specific race tactics for target races or key events.
Specific Race Tactics
So, you have trained hard for months and have prepared specifically to match the course requirements. Now, what will you do tactically to maximise your performance?
Below are four simple things to think about in the leading days of your key race with some key thoughts to consider with them:
1. What will the weather be doing?
Think of the right clothes to match the day. Do you need warm gear? It is always a good idea to dress in layers so it’s easier to regulate you temperature levels. on hot or sunny days, think about sunscreen to avoid being burnt. Thin undergarments to wick sweet away is always helpful.
2. What is the wind doing?
Do you need to be near the front more on certain exposed parts of the course? Will there be a crosswind following a hill? Wind does a lot of damage to breaking up bunches so by being ready will help you in the front groups.
3. What are the key parts of the course that will likely be pressure points in the race?
Are there key climbs to be prepared for? Do you know how long these are to gauge your efforts? Do you need to save energy later in the race even though you might be feeling a million dollars half way through the race?
4. Food and drink plan?
Hot days need more fluids but surprisingly even on cold days adequate fluid intake is still important. Considering how much fluid you will need is important and thinking where you can get additional bottles if required will support you to have a greater day out. Also, have you worked out how many KJ you will need for the day? 60-80 grams of carbohydrate per hour would be a general guide but differs with different efficiencies and body weights. For more info on race day nutrition check out our: pre race, during race and post race nutrition articles.
These a very basic considerations for your race day but they go a long way to help you have successful ride. If you miscalculated these factors such as your nutrition and fluid intake, or not knowing how long a climb is will surely wreck your day and ruin all that previous hard work leading into your event.