Well, I am finally back home after an awesome weekend of racing with Th!nk Financing pb Trek Stores. I had so much fun racing and hanging out with the guys, they were just hysterical to hang with.
Friday was the first crit of the weekend and I really wanted to put a good effort out to help the team.
When the course finally opened up and I came to the downhill off camber turn with a concrete lip in the middle that was sticking out I immediately started to panic. At this point I was worried about crashing and at the same time not doing well. Talk about self inflicted pressure.
Once we finally got underway with the race and made our way to the downhill corner I got gapped pretty good and had to work to close the gap down each and every lap. The turn was my nemesis the entire race.
This really sucked because I would get gapped by six to ten seconds through that turn and the next and then I would either fight to get back on on the back of the course straight away, on the start finish straight away, or catch them on the hill.
During this period one of the times I had just got back on before the start finish and was carrying enough speed that I decided I should attack and I had a short gap that got closed when we hit the downhill corner.
So eventually the race comes to a close and I just finished just at the tail end of what was left of the field, the good news was that we had gone first and second in the race.
What ended up happening is we had a guy up the road in a three man break and in the last turn the two other guys went down and Nick (our teammate) rolled in for his win, after being yelled at to “post up!” by John of course.
Following Nick was Zack who won the field sprint, and then Adam came in for sixth, after giving Zack a lead out for the last two laps, to take the last money spot.
It was pretty awesome racing with a team that was very dominate and strong both physically and tactically, but to be honest I was pretty bummed with my performance. It was funny, once I had finished I felt like I wasn’t too terribly tired, do to the fact that I had done basically no attacking.
So from the moment I awoke in the morning I was eager to visit the course to recon it and see what was up.
After I had gotten lunch with the guys I road with Adam to the course were we picked up our numbers and got our shirts. While we were doing this we jumped on the course and did a couple of the turns in the top section and then quickly jumped off as the women’s field came around.
After I had seen the course I knew I was going to be just fine and became really excited. I felt like I had just gotten my opportunity to do something that night, it was awesome.
We then rode back to the house and chilled out for a couple more hours before we headed to the race.
Skipping to the start to save some time because I’m doing three days in one, Right as the whistle was blown the team became very active with Zack attacking and then me following a guy to him and sitting on his wheel.
Zack eventually got a gap and held it at 12 to 16 seconds and he kept it for like the first ten laps, during this period the rest of the team were following moves and attacking to try and slow the pace down.
This went on for a while until Lee Bumgarner went to the front and pulled for like four laps.
Right as I saw Zack at about four seconds from us and starting to fold back into the peloton, I jumped for a counter attack. I had gotten a few seconds but they eventually brought me back.
After that there was a lot more attacking and following moves until eventually Adam attacked or followed a move to get off the front, I don’t remember which one it was, and then I saw a guy jump after him and I got on his wheel and he pulled me up to Adam, and the rest was history we road away from the pack.
I was super tired but was holding on to try and help Adam. With about two to go a guy attacked and I emptied the tank to try and get him as close as I could and just basically tried to hold on to the group to come in for a sixth place, Adam on the other hand did an awesome sprint and came in for third.
So after the race I felt a bit better with myself and somehow I apparently got a medal from the race director because I was the top junior; funny thing was that I was the only junior but I still got a medal so that was cool.
After that we drove back into KC.
I crashed as soon as I got home and then woke up to go out and ride with Nick, Joe, Tom, and Adam for a solid three plus hours on the bike. Tom, who is my hero after unloading and reloading the van all weekend, showed me an awesome route that I will be riding a lot.
So as this weekend comes to a close, I had so much fun learning and getting to hang out with the guys all weekend it was just so cool!