Do you find it hard to judge when to throw down a killer attack? Or, perhaps when you do, it never seems to stick?
If you can identify with either of the above, then I promise you, you are not alone! Most of us have been in at least one of those situations, and to a certain extent "getting it wrong" is part of learning. Lucky for us however, the "professional attackers", the masters, the guys who make it look so easy on our televisions have left us a few clues on how it's done.
Here are a few tips we live and die by at CINCH, to help make those attacks STICK!- Changes in Speed are key. As a general rule of thumb, all attacks should be made when the speed of the peloton/ race goes from SLOW to HIGH. Examples of this would be, at the top of a climb before a descent, out of a corner, or turning into a tailwind. These rapid changes in speed will help create a gap and ultimately make it harder for the pack to chase you down.
- It's NOT 1 size fits all. These huge full gas attacks may feel fast, but are they really the most effective? Challenge yourself to analyse your strengths as a rider, and create a "play" or attack which reflect these. Have you considered the power and length of attack which suits your rider type, or perhaps using a mixture of Power Train Zones? For example Gilbert (Puncheur) attacks in a completely different way to Quintana (Climber), the same principles apply to you.
- Practice! Make sure that you practice throwing attacks in training, and that you can launch them from a number of Power Train Zones, this way your body knows what to expect. Equally, it's important to practice clearing high amounts of lactate whilst still riding at a sustained high power, this way you know you can keep going after creating a gap.
- Be confident! When that crucial moment occurs, you have to commit, and go ALL IN. Don't underestimate the power, or hunger of your competitors, and how much they are prepared to suffer in order to chase you down. Any attack you make has to be delivered with belief and desire, the moment you question yourself you've already been caught.
Finally, don't be afraid to give it a go! Not even the Pro's got this right the first time, so go for it, and; DON'T LOOK BACK!
This article was written by CINCH Coach Sophie Johnson
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