So here is my recap on the National Road Race:
I had to wake up pretty early because the race started at eight in the morning and I needed to choke down some breakfast and warm up, and if you don’t know me I am not a morning person.
So having to wake up at five in the morning was absolutely brutal. The good thing though is we arrived well before the starting at a quarter to seven, which gave us an hour plus to get ready.
As I was warming up my friend and Abitibi teammate’s Dad came over and hooked me up with some rocking spray on sticky number stuff by 3M so I no longer have to use pins. Its pretty cool and it was oftly generous of him to do that.
After my warm up my Dad was switching the wheels while I put on my gloves and helmet. I then started to notice that everyone was sneaking over to the start and wanted my Dad to hurry because I didn’t want to start in the back.
Unfortunately I had made it in time to grab a mid to back of the peloton spot, where we would sit for thirty. During this time we would get our instructions on the neutral start that was down a hill and then do the National anthem.
Once it was time to go I was prepared to try and work my way up, but the neutral start didn’t end up to be neutral at all apparently the car was going to hook up with us at the bottom and expected us to go slow down but right from the gun we were flying then right before the bottom of this long hill there was a turn and the guys in the front could see it but in the middle to the back no one had a clue and as we are going 45 miles per hour down the hill we had to hit the brakes and start sliding into the back of the riders in front.
It was insane all I heard was the popping of the tubes from the carbon wheels overheating and the smell of carbon burning that was so flagrant it would bring tears to your eyes.
Once we got out of the neutral zone my front brake had been cooked and burned to shreds from using both from rapid decelerations. So this would put me in a spot that I had to try and control my positioning since I was trying to stick close with the group on the decent but wanted to keep a safe distance because I knew I didn’t have good stopping power with just one brake if I needed it.
We were going like fifty miles an hour down this one stretch and on it there would be little changes in the gradient which would cause the accordion effect big time. This was so crazy any one of the guys that I was drafting off of could have blown a tire and I might have ran into him.
Luckily when the tubes popped it wasn’t near me, but unfortunately on one occasion on the first time going down the hill this guys front tube popped and it sent him and a couple of other people who ran into him into a ravine.
Once we got out of this we hit the first little climb that had a 18 percent gradient and we were flying so fast that I was able to big ring the entire thing.
Then after a couple of more miles we made it to the nasty climb so I road third position up the entire thing and because of this anyone on the back felt the carnage and pain. Once we made it over everything was so spread out but somehow on the descent everything came back together.
The next time we hit the climb I had gotten caught sitting mid pack when the separation occurred, which meant for me I had to go past the riders who weren’t bridging the gap and bridge it my self, and thats exactly what I did unfortunately on the descent there was a bad accident that I just barely avoided which this caused a very bad separation between me and the 18 year olds who had elevens as opposed to my fifteen on the descent so they took big time on me by the time we had hit the bottom and it had flattened out a bit.
It sucked because that group would stay away and solidify the top twenty.
So me and a couple of the Garmin kids and some friends of mine formed a chase group but nobody would work together so the group would end up getting away, which sucked.
I was so close to being in the winning move but was caught behind that accident. I guess I will have to wait another year to give it another go.
At the end of the day I would get thirty first out of one hundred and fifty riders. I did end up being the highest placed sixteen year old and cat three, and because of that I am now the highest rated cat three in Missouri in road racing. However, that’s only momentary since I am planning to “cat up” this week.