I think Gary Bywater needs a new watch. He announced at the beginning of last night's RMR crit that the A flight would be racing for 55 minutes. I had arrived later than I wanted to due to traffic congestion. My warmup consisted of riding one lap.
The first twenty minutes were a special kind of punishment only slightly less miserable than the countless winter hours spent on a trainer by those administering it. After that, it was clear that the gap to the leaders was open, and I wasn't going to close it.
I contemplated bailing out, but with the wind blowing and the rain starting to fall and my objective being to train rather than to get a result, I persisted. My small chase group caught another group, dropped some of our riders, got caught by another group, such that the faces surrounding me were completely different by the time I crossed the line.
About that--crossing the line. After 58 minutes, we started wondering when, exactly, Gary would start counting down the laps since we were supposed to be done by now. We were over an hour when I rode by with outstretched arms, as if to ask "how much longer?"
"Three laps to go."
If where they have me in the results relative to the people I know I was ahead of is any indication, it should have been two. But at that point it really didn't matter. Gary, if you need my watch in the future, just ask.