Asheville-Buncombe Senior Games 2019
Its that time again. Unlike the real Olympic Games or the Guinea Pig Olympics, which are every four years, the Asheville-Buncombe Senior Games (AKA Senior Olympics) are annual.
This year's A-BSG bicycle time-trials are scheduled for Thursday evening April 25 on River Road near Marshall. Last year the course had to be modified because of extensive road works, but the twin, Ivy River bridges have now been replaced by a single two lane span, and the road is open. It is still not clear, however, whether we can go back to the old established course or stay with last year's set up.
This is maybe your only chance to race locally because there will probably not be a Lung Buster series this year.
Entry is open to all athletes aged 50 and over during the year, regardless of residence, and all age-group medalists in 1-mile, 5k and 10k qualify for NC Senior Games in Garner (near Raleigh) on September 22. There are 5-year age groups ad infinitum i.e. 50-54, 55-59, etc. Officially only open to 50+ age groups, in the past, the organizers have allowed under-age rider participation, but for training purposes only. Under-age riders will not get awards or qualification.
A-BSG TT rules are different from USA Cycling. Participants can enter for up to four distances, 1-mile, 5k, 10k, and 20k, but it is combined into one ride with split times determining the results. The course is out-and-back so most riders, having completed the 1-mile, 5k and 10k to the turn-around, continue their race back to the cars at 20k. NC Senior Games do not have a 20k TT, so A-BSG medalists only qualify for the shorter distances.
Note that these races are time-trials, which means no mass start and no riding in close proximity to other participants in a peloton. With staggered, individual starts the competition is really against the clock. Nobody faces embarrassment or humiliation from being dropped or lapped.
Any questions about the games should be addressed to Max Cherry, firstname.lastname@example.org, 828-259-5555, or Zach Stewart, email@example.com, 828-350-2058. If anyone would like advice about participating in bicycle time-trials, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please put these TTs on your calendars. They are fun, with little pressure, and are a great opportunity to test your speed endurance in a friendly, competitive atmosphere. My first bicycle race was at the 2003 A-BSG, in which I rode a Trek 1000 with no aero equipment, and it proved to be the start of an enjoyable time-trial career.