Fixed Gear Crit

Red Hook Crit 2016 top contenders for RHC Brooklyn 10: Veronika Volok

With RHC BK 10 approaching quickly, we asked several RHC 2016 top contenders that are competing in Brooklyn how their season is going, what they expect of the race, themselves, and what they think of the new qualification format. In this edition we spoke to Veronica Volok who got a 7th place in RHC BK 9 and a 10th spot in the 2016 RHC GC.

How do you prepare for RHC BK10?
I lay off the pastries (I have a weakness for sweets) and train on my track bike at the Port of Oakland (a.k.a POO). Every Sunday we get a group of us together and focus on doing intervals, hairpins and spinning our little hearts out until we want to throw up.

The Mission Crit in SF (shoutout to James Grady!) happens exactly a week before RHC Brooklyn, so doing that race is an excellent way of preparing and seeing if you’re really ready for Brooklyn. Also if you find yourself in SF on April 22nd you should come and experience what the Mission Crit is all about.

How is your season going so far?
For the first time in a long time I’m attempting this thing called road racing. I decided I wanted to do more road crits and a few road races for the fun and experience. So far so good.

Track season starts this month at the Hellyer Velodrome in San Jose so the stoke levels are very high 😁

What do you think of the new qualifications system?
I’m pretty excited for the new qualification system. It looks like it will be a lot more efficient, safer, and everyone gets a chance to give it their all, and if you REALLY give it your all, you get into the Super Pole, which is a very exciting element to the race.

Is your race tac-tics affected by the new qualification system?
Yes and no. Before it was about getting your best time in with yourself or with your teammates and hoping a crash won’t get in the way or you don’t get stuck behind a slower rider. Now it will be a mini race where every lap and every second counts and how you finish will determine what will happen next.

How do you think that the race is affected by the new qualification system?
I think it will give the strongest racers a good start position and possibly an even better finish. Last year a lot of men and women were upset with their qualifying time and start position because something happened during their efforts. I think this new qualification system will change up the race and get some heavy hitters out there that didn’t have a chance before.

What is the goal for RHC BK10?
Every year I make my goal to finish better than the previous year. So far I’ve done that for the last three years, but this year will definitely be a challenge with the women’s field growing in numbers, strength, and speed.

What is the goal for RHC 2017 series?
Finish strong with my ELF Huez team of babes. I’m really excited to race alongside Brooke and Toto and reunite with my old teammate Johanna. Johana and I were on the same team that won the Women’s Championship last year. It won’t be easy to try to do that again, but I think the whole team has a ton of potential to finish strong when our forces are combined.