Sunday, April 19, 2009


Yes kiddies, It has been a while since I've had a finish worthy of standing on some numbered boxes, but my luck changed this weekend. This weekend was chock full of good racing and circuit race courses. Saturday was SoYoCo, a 2.5 mile loop with a nice mile long false flat to a steep kicker 300 m to the line. We had limited numbers (with Just three of us) so we tried to mark/jump into moves rather than initiating them. Todd had some bad luck and flatted out about halfway into the race. The short of is is that I got frustrated with the team tactics and killed it for most of a lap. One dude came through when I swung off and boom, we had a group of eight, with the right teams represented. Some guys were sitting on so I tried to shake it up by attacking on the kicker each lap, but never got a smaller group to work. It looked like we were going to come to the line together, so i started preparing for the jumps/ last ditch attacks. An Alliance rider (Mike) dropped a bomb with a little over a km to go and no one reacted. at about 800 to go a Landrover guy jumped after him and got a good separation. I got boxed in bit and by the time i got out he had a good gap on me. at this point it was a bar fight and we just motored to the line. I picked up one rider on the way to the line and despite my best efforts he grabbed my wheel, at about 200 to go we caught Mike and the dude on my wheel attacked. I clawed my way back to him and past him to finish second. The Land Rover guy won. His attack was well timed and he earned that win fare and square.

It was a great feeling to be competing for a win again. It was a little weird, there was a point where I wasn't sure if I would know how to "finish", but offseason training and experience came through.

Today (Sunday) was the Carl Dolan Circuit Race. We had mostly a full squad and were ready to try to rip the race to shreds. The plan was to let the early race action keep things fast and then start dropping bombs. Things didn't go exactly as planed as Rick and Jeff got off in a group of 5 on the second lap. That quickly turned into a group of four as one dude got dropped. This was a break that we wanted to support so it was all hands on deck to shut things down. The next 5-6 laps consisted of a flurry of attacks with out team siting one or two guys on every move. The gap slowly creeped up to 30 seconds, and then there was finally a lull in the filed letting the gap grow to a little over a minute. The attacks continued, but they never really made a dent until about 5 laps to go. The break had dropped to three riders and the field was still full of motivated guys that wanted a field sprint. It was a little touch and go, but Rick drove it hard to make sure that they stayed away. In the end, Jeff came up about a half of a bike length short of the win and Rick held on for third. I tried to lead out Marc F. for the sprint, but hit the front a bit early and didn't have the gas to get him to 300m.

At the end of the day we raced really well and will get that elusive win shortly. Next weekend we have the Tour of Ephrata stage race. It has an 8 mile TTT with the last 4 miles being a significant climb. It is gonna be interesting.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Philly 2-Day recap...

This a a week late, but I was laid up with my annual "spring cold". Hopefully this year I'll recover from it a bit better. I've got my physicians in a row and we're being very proactive with respect to my asthma so that I'm not still hacking up a lung in the middle of June. Anyhoo, last weekend, Bloom, Nate and I headed up to Philly for a 2-day omnium, Circuit on Sat., Crit on Sun.

We had initially though this would be an easy race to nab some upgrade points for the young-uns, boy were we wrong. Empire showed up with a full squad and were ready to throw down. Bobby Lea and Choderoff from OUCH/MAXXIS were there too. To fill out the field there were squads of 8+ from GPOA, Pitt. Elite velo, and Indiana Med center. That last squad included my old housemate John Rowley, It was really fun to see him again and not surprisingly he can still ride quite well. To add to the drama, Sat was stupid windy, with gusts upward of 30MPH.

The race was pretty fast from he guy, with lots of attacks. There was a lot of "follow the pro" with tons of people scrambling for Bobbies wheel. I understand that he's likely to make the selection and following him is a smart move, but if you make that selection you are racing for second place. This was especially baffling as the bigger squads should have tried to get something away without him and make him/Choderoff work. In the end Empire got two guys away with Bobbie and it stuck. GOPA chased but were not organized enough to do any damage. The gap settled at about 1 min and that was it. I took a flyer after a prime and spent a few laps out there solo, but it the group behind pulled me in. At that point I tried to shepherd Bloom to the line for the sprint. I dropped him off at the front with about 500 to go and he was able to jump on the surge up the left side and grab 7th. I rolled in for 13th, Nate 21st.

Sundays crit was fantastic, it reminded me of Winfield (saturday) except the finish was at the top of the climb. It had some good technical turns and a nice steady big-ring uphill. The plan was to try to get Bloom a good finish and hopefully a top 5 in the overall. I was on the Hunt for some primes; my legs were really sluggish on sat and prime hunting is a good way to get the snap back. The race was a little more negative than saturday as Empire was trying to isolate Bobby, and noting too major ever developed. With a handful of laps to go, Nate got in a move of four that go t a gap of ~20sec. Empire and I went to work shutting it down. The break was not super organized and had a few guys sitting on, but it still looked like it would stick. Bloom got on my wheel with 2 to go and it was on. The leadout from empire stalled a bit on the last lap and I lost Bloom. When things got rolling again I was a little further back than I should have been, but whatever. The front of the sprint actually caught the break a the line, but Nate held on for 3rd place. I ended up 10th which was good enough to end up 9th overall. Overall we raced pretty well especially given the competition and our small numbers. Also a big shout out to our teammate Jacob who let us crash at his pad outside of philly. He raced on sunday too and Nabbed a prime and helped keep the race active.

Next week I'll be racing the Carl Dolan crit/circuit. Pray for better weather than last year (the photo at the top is from that race). We're out for blood and win so it's gonna be a barfight. I can't wait.