Saturday, June 11, 2016

Air Force Cycling Classic Clarendon Cup

Today the Lupus Racing Team raced the Air Force Cycling Classic Clarendon Cup. We raced 100 laps on a technical one kilometer circuit. It really was a fun course. Since we had no sprinter for the day, we wanted to put riders into breakaways. We all started near the front, and the pace started off rather slow. A couple riders went up the road, but UHC, Cyclance, nor Astellas were represented. As a result I did not see this move as a threat and just surfed the front of the pack. Then the pace picked up, and Jonah found himself in a move. When Jonah's move got brought back, I immediately got into the counter, and that was the move of the day. 15 riders were in the group, and UHC had 4 or 5 riders in the move. Astellas and Cylance both had 2 or 3 riders in my group. In this particular scenario I ideally wanted to do no work. However, that is not possible because riders will take you off the back of the group if you do not work. This means you will have to waste more energy if you do not work at all, so I worked a little bit and let UHC drive the pace. We lapped up with about 60 laps to go, and I immediately made my way to the front of the peloton. My goal was to creep into another move, but that opportunity never arose. The peloton was content to let UHC set pace, and if there was no opportunity I would just waste energy for the finale by attacking. My legs felt super, and Oliver, Jonah, and Nicolai did a great job keeping me out of the wind in the finale. Oliver flatted inside 8 laps to go, so the left Jonah and Nic. Jonah took over and had me positioned right up there with Astellas and UHC. After Jonah cracked Nic helped keep me at the front. Over the last couple laps I had trouble staying on the wheels of UHC. I took the turns well and was pushing maximum, but I just could not match the speed of UHC. Over the last couple laps I pushed my heart out, and was able to come away with 10th place. I am really happy with how my teammates helped me today, but I am disappointed all I could achieve was 10th. Tomorrow we race a less technical 2 hour crit called the Crystal Cup.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Johnson City Crit

This past Sunday we raced the Johnson City Crit. The course was very technical and it was wet for our race. I was sitting in first overall with Oliver in 3rd with Jonathan Freter of Astellas sandwiched between us. The plan was for us to be aggressive and for one of us to take the win and the overall. Oliver attacked from the gun and had a gap. This put Jonathan on the edge. He wasn't able to go through the turns well because I think he had too much pressure in his tires. Others bridged to Oliver, so I passed Jonathan and went with those riders. After bridging up I attacked, but a lot of riders followed me. During this point I crashed in a slick turn but was ok and rejoined in the break. Oliver countered me and that was it really. He had a gap that would last through the end of the race. Chris Uberti of Finish Strong attacked but I couldn't follow him at that point in time. I was too far back, and he got too big of a gap to chase back without brining the whole field. I attacked multiple times just to get up the road and away from the peloton in the closing stages of the race. I finally got away with Sam Kieffer of Think Green-VO2 Multisport with about 15 laps left to race. I worked with him to establish a gap, but as we got closer to Oliver and Chris I told him I couldn't work. The field came close with about 6 laps to go, so I worked to re-establish our gap for a few laps. Then I quit working again. In the front Oliver was sitting on Chris as well. Oliver was able to outspent Chris and take the win, but I was not able to outsprint Sam and took 4th. I was really close, but that was all I had. In winning the race Oliver took the overall win as well. I am super happy for him because he has worked for me during a lot of races in the past. He is a super teammate who is always working for the team, so it really is nice to see him take 3 wins this past weekend. I am also thankful to our teammate Nolan's parents Tracey and David Tankersley for opening up their home to us over the weekend. They cooked for us and were very positive and relaxing to be around. Next weekend we race the Air Force Cycling Classic in Washington D.C.

Sunday, June 05, 2016

Johnson City RR and TT

Yesterday Oliver, Jonah, and I raced the Johnson City Road Race. The race took place on a rolling course and finished up a 7 mile climb. We had Jonah control the race and cover early moves. He did a super job because no move was able to get significant a gap. This allowed Oliver and I to sit in all day long. With roughly 30 miles to go Oliver followed a couple guys, and this put me in a nice position for the end of the race. Oliver's break build up a gap relatively quickly and arrived at the base of the climb with a 3 minute lead. At the bottom Oliver dropped his break mates and soloed to the finish line. With Oliver up the road I was able to follow other riders up the hill. I would randomly attack to try to get away and wear down the guys I was with. By the finish we caught both the riders who started the climb with Oliver. I was only with Sean Gardner of Kelly amateur team, and I outsprinted him to take second place. This was a really fun race because tactically we rode perfectly and took 1st and second place.

The TT took place on a 3.2 mile rolling course. This TT is always tough because you have the road race from the morning in your legs already. I gave it all I had and came away with second place to Jonathan Freter of Astellas. He put in a stellar ride. I am leading the GC heading into the crit today. Oliver is sitting in third, so we have a strong position for the overall.