Cat 5 Men: 8:30 AM
Description: A fun, fast, mostly flat course at the top of the Olympic Peninsula. What makes things interesting is the wind — there’s often a strong wind from the west. The course starts off on a rolling hill and then things pick up in a hurry — 30 MPH (assuming the wind is from the west). The course progresses nicely until the ~5mi straightaway — right into the wind. For the most part, this kills breakaways — riders can get off for a bit, but the peleton ropes them back in on the wind. Riders need to be careful on the initial hill on the subsequent laps — too much wind (or cross-wind on the N-S route) and they’ll get dropped if they don’t make it up the hill with the pack.
Cat 5 Men – 10 AM. From Seattle, be on the 7:10 AM ferry!
The Pacific Raceways Road Race series is a weekly road race on Tuesdays at 7:00 PM (6:30 for juniors and women every other week). It’s essentially a practice race, but it’s a lot of fun, a great workout, and great for training on various things important to racers — riding in a pack going 30+ MPH, attacking, chasing, steep descents (the escape route has a long steep hill), steep climbs (same hill, going the other way), and cornering. Plus, you have the opportunity to win valuable cash and prizes. Primes for the first week for Cat 4-5 Men were $5 and a pound of Starbucks coffee (whole bean no less!). Here’s a map of the course; blue is the flat course, red is the escape route (still uses the flats on the northern part), and green is the S curve addition (extra cornering!).
The races are timed and last from 30 minutes to 1:15 (rounded to the nearest lap finish). Racers are advised when there’s 2 laps remaining to start jockeying for position if they haven’t already. The course is wide, so it’s generally easy to move around.
Pacific Raceways is down in Kent (more or less Auburn). From Redmond, best way to get there is apparently go to I-90, take it east to WA-18 around Tiger Mountain, and then take WA-18 down to the PR exit (304th St / 312th St). From Seattle, presumably you’re heading down I-5, but that might require leaving earlier than 5:00 PM.
Note: back to back rides!