It doesn't matter how hard you train, how well you eat, what sacrifices you make or how much of an athlete you claim to be if you can't "lay it down" on race day.
Training well and racing well are two totally different things. Just as you have to be smart with your training, you have to be smart with your racing. Because it doesn't matter how much fitness you have if you waste it during the race. You have to know when the right time to expend energy is, and you have to know when the right time to save energy is.
Bike racing isn't always about who the fittest rider is. It's often about who the smartest rider is. Be fit AND smart...then your deadly.