Saturday, March 6, 2010

Mar-06 - Strategy

Or, "The County Line Conspiracy"

I assume that Iva has previously clued Tito in on the conspiracy. No one will expect Iva to try to steal any CLs -- they will all be watching me. No one will expect Tito to seriously sprint for any CLs because all (with the possible exception of the Mallet) figure Tito knows he could take the CL if he tried, but he doesn't / won't (in a usual situation). Even if that is not true, we want to use that perception to our advantage.
There are 12 county lines in the middle 33 miles of this ride. I'll outline two to four where we might be able to "trick" the group and sneak a CL or two for the Speedy Hawk.

Basically, people will likely be marking me. I will try to make some fake charges early, and at least some when Iva is not in position to steal or challenge. I will try to make a big deal about how I wasn't able to trick anyone and therefore saved my energy. Repeatedly, if need be.

No one expects Iva to try to get a CL. Therefore, I think sneak attack / break-aways may work for Iva, especially if I have drifted to the back at the key times, and Tito rides along with Iva, and leads out if appropriate. 

Waste no energy if it is not a "real" CL move. Waste no energy if it becomes obvious that someone else is going to get to the CL before you.
The first CL will be on Beaver Dam Rd, about 11 miles into the ride. Several, including Harvey, the Mallet, Smitty and Lt. Dave ought to recall where the CL is without any "prodding". This is NOT a CL that I would recommend as a "sneak target". If there appears to be no "activity" as we approach the CL, I will make an apparent move to start the wearing down process. I would expect that each of you would be in the peloton somewhere where you are comfortable, and would be consistent with your usual placement. E.g., Tito might be near the front engaging in conversation, Iva in the middle to rear engaging in conversation. There is likely no point to you guys to accelerating at all at this CL.

The second CL will be on Lawrence Rd as we near Bold Run Hill Rd. Some may recall this CL. Since this is a long downslope, I will try to get near the front so that others might think that I am trying to sneak the CL. Norris and Harvey are really fast downslope; Iva, because he weighs next to nothing, is not. We will use my fake interest and the others natural competitive juices to let them tire themselves a bit.

The third CL (at about 21 miles into the ride) will be on Bud Smith Rd about a mile after we turned off Purnell Rd @ Purnell. Neat, huh. This will be a new stretch of road, and the only reason we will be riding it is so that we can approach the CL at the intersection of Bud Smith and Woodland Ch roads from a direction in which it will be acceptable to contest a CL. I don't think that I can do a good fake for this CL, and it is not one of the ones that I think we should target for Iva. However, if I am in the middle or near the front as we approach this CL, I will make a fake in order to get the guys to wear themselves out a bit more.

The next CL is only 0.6 miles later, after Bud Smith Rd becomes Jonah Davis Rd, and after the sharp corner. This is the same CL that Iva and I conspired to steal for him last summer. If the fast guys slow after the CL at Bud Smith / Woodland Ch, it might be useful if Iva and I again teamed up to appear to be trying to sneak past and away. With luck, others will remember last summer, and think that they have spotted a plot. I assume we will not be able to steal this CL, and Iva should waste no energy.

The fifth CL, about 25.6 miles into the ride, is about a quarter mile after we turn off Sid Mitchell Rd onto John Mitchell Rd. This is the first real target of the conspiracy. I will be sure to have drifted to the back, so those marking me will not be alerted. If you two can try to get away together from that corner first (probably a re-grouping point), people may think that the two of you are just chatting. I suggest not sprinting, but if you get away from the corner first, just keep dragging the pace up; Tito leading out Iva, and Iva going hell-bent-for-leather if you manage to get a lead and the usual suspects (e.g., Mallet, Snapper, Smitty) do not appear to be paying attention. If they are paying attention, go for it anyway, but maybe not totally all out, just appear to do so. If the others manage to beat Iva here, they probably won't expect a repeat of the strategy, which may help get them off their guard. It is possible that Harvey may recall this road / CL from the ride he, Iva and I did a few months ago. If so, them's the breaks.

A regrouping when we get to Woodland Ch Rd would be in order, to direct those preferring a really short ride back toward PUE.

The sixth CL, at about 29.2 miles into the ride, will be on Tom Linum (?) Rd. Just stay in the pack wherever you are comfortable and wherever you think will cause the least attention to be paid to you.

The seventh CL, at about 29.8 miles, will be about a 1/4 mile or less after turning left off NC-96. This is the second real target. After the previous CL, drift to the FRONT, and try to be the first ones to make that left off the highway onto Mays Store Rd. If you manage to make that turn first, I suggest repeating the strategy used on the fifth CL.

The next CL, at about 30.5 miles, will be on Bruce Garner between the Mays Store and Pokomoke. I anticipate a regroup at Mays Store / Bruce Garner so those wanting to short the route can be directed toward PUE. I expect everyone should recognize where they are, and make a try for this CL, so I expect it will be too difficult to take this CL, so I wouldn't waste any energy. We will regroup just after the turn onto Gordon Moore from Pokomoke Rd.

The ninth CL, at about 32.0 miles, will be on Suitt Rd. I will drift to the back, and if you guys can drift to the front, you will have the opportunity to be the first to see the CL sign as you crest a small hill or ridge. If you manage to be in the front, make a two man train going hell-bent-for leather.

Shortly after the above CL, we will regroup, again, when we reach the stop-sign. We will push away to the right on Evans Rd. The tenth CL is at about 34.0 miles. If you didn't have a chance to contest the previous CL, getting away first from the stop-sign has a definite advantage. The CL is about 1/2 mile, maybe less, from the stop-sign. This is the last real target.

The eleventh CL, at about 38.2 miles, will be where Pokomoke Rd becomes Bruce Garner Rd (about 1/2 mile after Pokomoke). Since we will have just gone through this section the opposite direction, everyone ought to realize where they are. I wouldn't bet on it, though.

The last (12th) CL, at about 44.6 miles, will be on Rock Springs / Beaver Dam Rd. Since it is the same CL as the first CL, and Snapper has had instruction on this CL in the last two months, I figure there is no chance for Iva or me.
If we manage at least one CL for the Hawk, we will celebrate big-time, sometime after we get onto Gordon Moore Rd (after the 10th CL, while still 17 to 19 miles from PUE). If we manage no CLs for Iva -- we've still had extra fun plotting.


  1. Fun ride today. Wish i could have been around for the whole thing, but needed to save a little something for tomorrow. My burning question is. Did the plan work?


  2. "Did the plan work?"


    From the blog post: "If we manage no CLs for Iva -- we've still had extra fun plotting."

    After the short crew turned back toward PUE, we mostly rode "a group ride" chatting and enjoying the passing scenes. BobH was leading (I think) as we went thru CLs 8, 9 and 10. However, since no one was paying attention after we left Pokomoke, I urged Agnew to let the Hawk thru so he could in front of Tito and BobH -- and then I urged Iva to "GO". It would have been more fun IF "someone" had not been close to Iva on Mays Store Rd and we could have snuck that one for the Hawk.

    But it didn't really matter. The biggest part of the fun was hatching the conspiracy and the plan.


    advantage of being the blog "owner": no verification word

  3. The first target Sid Mitchell off of John Mitchell (or vice versa) was all set up and ready to execute. It was Tito, Smitty, and me sitting at the intersection. I even told Smitty, "Tito and I are going to move ahead. You wait here for them". I'm sure he thought that an odd comment. Then, one slight problem, we went the opposite way we should have ! Duh - 0 for 1. The next time was set up perfectly - the left off 96. I even had a long head start due to a fortunate traffic thing. But, I sat up to wait for Tito to pull me about the same time I saw the line and took off. Too late. Smitty and Tito were on me and around. I hung for 10 seconds and that was it. 0-2. We didn't try the 3rd option. I finally "won" the 11th or 12th not sure. I suspect there was a bit of the same situation going on here with Pantani and Armstrong on Mt Ventoux in 2000. IvaHawk