Wednesday, July 30, 2008

First race back!

Crossroad Criterium Series #4: Mocksville, NC

Last night was the Mocksville Criterium. We brought a full squad of eight guys, but the field was MUCH improved from the previous three Crossroads races: Anibal Borrajo from Colavita was there, Mark Heckman from Toshiba, and a host of other top professionals.

The race was very fast from the gun, and in the first five laps our team was very aggressive and basically shattered the front of the field. I saw Adam Meyerson, Jon Hamblen, and Tom Soladay up front in the break and the chase group just behind the break, so I sat up through some turns to let the gap open up. I also marked a move that tried to get up to the break, but when we had a good gap and I saw a teammate on the front slowing things down, I put my head down and went to bridge the gap . . . unfortunately, I didn't have that top-end race intensity after two weeks of no racing in my legs, and when the guy on my wheel jumped around me to close the final gap, I couldn't get on him. I sat out in no-man's land, coming within three seconds of the break while they played some games for a little bit, but then someone in the break attacked and my gap to them increased and I was toast!

It was quite frustrating, as having me in the break would have been great because I could do a big leadout for Adam Meyerson, as well as get another top-10 for the team no matter what (the break quickly lapped the field only 30 minutes into the race because the course was only 0.5 miles). However, our work was cut out for us after the break lapped: sit on the front and keep the pace steady and progressively increase it until the final sprint.

Daniel Ramsey, Andy Baker, Jackie Simes and I were the four guys rotating from 25 laps out, and each guy would take a pull for one lap, get off the front, and slot right back in to fourth position. Things were super smooth, and all eight guys were in a single file line at the front for most of the race . . . then Tom got to the front and got the pace about one or two mph faster, Dan took over for a MONSTROUS six or eight lap pull at the front traveling almost 30mph average, and swung off with 2.5 laps to go. I took over for exactly one lap, but I was already close to the rivet after holding Dan's wheel! I went until I couldn't go any longer, then David Guttenplan took over for one lap, Tom took over on the back side with Adam Meyerson on his wheel and Jon Hamblen sweeping people off--textbook.

Unfortunately, Adam was overtaken on the inside on the final lap by Anibal Borrajo and unclipped before almost colliding with the fencing on the outside of the course. Jon put in as good a sprint as he could and took fifth, while Adam rolled in for 10th out of 10 in the break, happy to still have his heart beating.

Overall, it was a pretty well-run race, but things got messed up in the final lap. I was disappointed in myself for not making it up to the break, but at the same time I am very happy to have good sensations from my first race back after a pretty gnarly injury! I looked at the SRM file and it was quite impressive with a 325 watt average (including coasting) for the whole race and a 360 watt normalized power. My final leadout pull for one lap was 454 watts for 1:30 after over 10 minutes of 330 watts average and 28.2mph! Also notice the first 10 minutes was mostly above my 380-watt threshold, probably why the legs locked up a bit midway between the break and the field.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Back on the bike!!!

Thanks to everyone who emailed/Facebooked/sent comments to me, it has really helped me get through a rough patch. I have been back on the bike since Wednesday, and began my final 10-day build to U23 Nationals on Thursday. I think that I will have some solid training, and with the form that I had at Louisville, I think I'll have a fighting chance. I am going out to California with no expectations, I am just going to enjoy being on the West Coast, seeing my family, helping out the team, and going to the beach! Then it's on like you know what for the rest of August through USPRO Nationals and Univest!

I want to give a shout-out to Carol Blount, one of the nicest ladies I have ever met, who sat next to me on the train to Richmond. It is SUCH a small world: she knows my great aunt and uncle, gives Charlie his flu shot each year, is in the same investment club as Rosanna, and the most amazing thing is her father-in-law actually owned 20 Nassau Street where Sol Cycles is now operating! Just incredible conversation, not to mention she reminded me of Arnica, a 100% natural and homeopathic pain killer with no side-effects, and she gave me a lot of it on the train and I immediately felt like a healed man. THANK YOU SO MUCH, CAROL!

And now, I leave you with a video that should instill some serious feelings of foreboding about the coming election . . .

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Limping through the season

Time Pro Cycling has strung together a few excellent weekends, with 2nd at the Iron Hill USA Crit, 3rd at the Louisville NRC (after lapping the field), 1st at Norton Commons, and most recently 3rd, 4th, and 6th (again, lapping the field) at the Boise NRC/USA Crit! The team is really firing on all cylinders and we are hoping to bring Adam Myerson home for the overall USA Crits win, as well as secure the Team Overall and the U-25 Overall. We have the Crossroads Criterium Series coming up this Friday through the following Friday, leading into the big-money Charlotte criterium and our own race at Haynes Park in Winston-Salem.

The U-23 guys (Eric Barlevav, Jackie Simes, Andy Baker, and yours truly) are going to pick and choose which Crossroads races to do, and Andy and I are flying out early on the Sunday before Nationals (just 12 days from now) in order to scout out the TT and road courses as well as acclimate. The guys are super motivated and ready to rock!

I found my racing legs at Louisville and Norton, where I finally felt like my old, powerful, attacking self after over two months of purgatory trying to find my form following my car accident, a broken rib at Nature Valley, and a concussion on the final monsoon-stage of the Tour of PA. Unfortunately, my bad luck and even worse timing continued . . .

My high-side crash at the tail-end of the Norton criterium has turned out to be much worse than I had anticipated. It has now been nine days since the fall, and I am still hobbling around and unable to put shorts on without leaning on something. I had been riding all last week right after the accident, putting in really hard 4+ hour rides on Thursday and Friday, but found myself out of commission after I pulled a tendon in my left knee that seems to give me some grief every winter.

I had been putting up with the stiffness and sharp pains in my hips and lower back for the past seven days by pounding five or six Advil each morning and at lunch, but after my knee flared up I decided to just ride longer and really easy to try and keep it moving . . . then Monday morning I decided to really assess the situation: no ride, no Advil, lots of ice. I came to the heart-breaking realization that my heavy dosage of pain killers had been causing me to think my maladies were mending, but in fact they were still plaguing me almost as painfully as the day after the crash!

First I called my mom and vented for 40 minutes about how frustrated I am: I have now had five crashes this season, including two broken bones, two concussions, 30+ stitches in my forehead after getting glass removed, and lots of road rash. I have struggled mentally to overcome my setbacks, as each accident occurred at perfectly spaced intervals to prevent me from really getting the ball rolling and getting my form back to previous levels. I have felt the pressure of being on a new team with new teammates and failing to come through with the success that I know I am capable of when I am 100%. I have dealt with the stereotype of being just a strong time-trial-specialist who is not able to read a race or ride at anything faster than a steady 30 mph for 30 minutes. I worked incredibly hard from October 2007 to May 2008, and put much more pressure on myself than I had realized, only to find numerous setbacks that have prevented me from reaping the rewards of my efforts.

My mom is an excellent support system, and she was incredibly understanding and helpful. She knows when to just listen, when to give me some advice, and when to tell me to quit my bitching and man-up. My dad is always there for me 110%, but he is like I am (maybe that is backwards!): he cannot help but attempt to solve problems, and most of my problems this season have no solution. My mom and I came to the realization that no matter what happens for the rest of the season, I am going to come out with incredible new experience in some of the country’s biggest and fastest races, as well as loads of training and racing at levels I have never reached previously. But most importantly, I am going to have a bunch of excellent teammates and friends who are motivated to come back out next year and just rock! It will be HUGE to know my teammates, how we race, how we live together, how we travel, and how we deal with rough patches. I want to make the most of the rest of the season, and I have some huge races coming up, even if I am dealing with some injuries and still looking for that “the-chain-is-missing” form.

After Erik Saunders came over to the house for a little visit and saw the ice bag riveted to my knee, we talked about my injuries and, always the man with the answers, he told me to call Dr. Matt. Dr. Matt is our pro-bono team doctor and a good friend of Mike Stoop’s. We talked on the phone and Matt said that if I am still having severe pains and stiffness in my pelvis and hips after over a week has passed since my crash, then there is a good chance that I have a hairline fracture or I have broken the tough outer layer of bone between my ligaments and bones. In either case, the body treats the injury like a break, and just takes weeks to come back to 100%.

In my stir-crazy cabin-fever dementia, I decided I would take a second day off the bike and travel by Amtrak up to Richmond, Virginia to pick up my Vespa from Mike Stoop’s house and drive it back down to Winston. The trip would dovetail perfectly with a visit to Dr. Matt so he could poke and prod me and give me the news, for better or for worse, as well as tell me whether a chiropractor (NOT covered by my insurance!) would be helpful or necessary.

So here I am, riding in a comfortable-but-packed train up from High Point, NC to Richmond, VA. I am looking forward to driving the Vespa over 200 miles on some beautiful back roads, through hills and small mountains, back to Winston, and I am anxiously awaiting Matt’s diagnosis. I know that, with the help of Advil, I can come back to riding (and maybe even training) tomorrow, but the knee issue is something I have had before and needs to be cared for very well or it can be a plague that lasts for weeks. I have to get back into things steadily and surely, and make the most of the next 14 days before the U23 National Time Trial (with the criterium the next day and the road race three days after).

It has been a very tough season for me, but Iron Hill and especially Louisville confirmed to me that, no, I DON’T suck, and that I am still at another level than I have ever raced at before even when I am not 100%. I just need to get healed, get healthy, and not put pressure on myself to adhere to a timeline or expect certain things from certain races in August. After all, I know that cycling is a tough sport and if it were really easy to go out and dominate I probably wouldn’t enjoy it! Perseverance pays off, I just have to stick with it through thick and thin and always remember what it is I love about racing my bike.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

3rd place in Louisville NRC, and then an unfortunate left turn

Matt Winstead and Hilton Clarke follow as I get the winning break going.

I almost took out Mark Zalewski ( in the fast Turn 3 in the break.

Here is an SRM power file overview of the Louisville Metro Police Foundation NRC criterium. I put a threshold line at 380 watts and smoothed it a bit, but notice that the first 2/3 of the race are much harder and faster--I was in the break almost from the gun! Also notice the last two laps were just balls-to-the-wall and over 30mph the whole time.

Here is where the break was initiated. Again, I took a page out of Steve Tilford's book and ramped it up from 10 back just before a turn, then put my head down and killed it for a few straightaways without looking back. Luckily the move looked good to Hilton (Toyota), Matt (Inferno), and Bergman/Albers (Roadhouse). Notice it only took 1.5 minutes to settle in and start working just above threshold--that is when you know a break is going to work! We got the gap and then settled into a pace just faster than the group, and I knew we were down for the long haul without having to burn all my matches in the beginning getting it to stick.

This is the penultimate lap . . . you can see where I almost crashed and then started to give it the stick to salvage things at 2:40:27.

The final lap was just an all-out 2-minute drill. Notice that my heart rate was just about through the roof (consider that I TT at 170-172!) and the speed was also pretty good considering there were many turns and headwind sections. For the final two minutes I averaged over 460 watts including coasting through some turns, and my 5-minute record is 460 up a climb with no coasting . . . not too shabby for the end of a 100-degree criterium!


What a weekend! The guys and I traveled up/over to Louisville, Kentucky for a $15,000 NRC criterium on Saturday and another local $5,000 criterium on Sunday. Adam Myerson had worked with the race promoter over the winter during the 'cross season, and we had been hooked up with a tight suite at the Galt House just a few miles from our races! After Tom Soladay and Adam arrived Friday afternoon at the airport after flying in from Boston, Eric Barlevav, David Duncan, Mike Stoop, and yours truly rolled in and we suited up for a nice cruise to a local park with another friend of Adam's, Brian.

We all went out to dinner Friday night, and unfortunately chose a restaurant that Brian had recommended which was more popular than EPO at the Tour. We waited, and waited, and got some beers . . . and waited some more. Finally at about 10PM we got food and a cool little magic show from a restaurant magician! We quickly headed back to the hotel and crashed for the night.

After sleeping in until 10AM and getting out for a nice morning spin, we all chilled out in the hotel until it was time to leave for the race that started at 4:45. The weather was quite insane, with temperatures hovering close to 100 and rumors of 70% humidity to boot! I filled two plastic Subway bags with ice and put them in a musette bag to carry to the race, and after a very short warmup I stopped in the shade and packed my bottles, jersey pockets, and a Zip-loc with ice. I learned this from Steve Tilford, who has probably done more 100+ degree races than I have raced TOTAL: bit a small hole in the corner of the Zip-loc to let it drip down your back as the ice melts, giving your evaporative cooling and also preventing the need to carry around a large bag of warm water for the majority of the race.

My cooling strategies helped a lot, but I still knew that a race this hot and this long (90 minutes) in blazing sun and wind would require a good amount of pacing--go over your threshold too much or too often and the legs will just evaporate. I also had a feeling that an early break would go because some people would do well in the heat and most would feel sluggish and paralyzed. We were aggressive in the first few laps, getting off the front for primes and during the lull just after a prime, but it was my attack on the fifth lap just before Turn 2 that initiated the winning break.

Two roadhouse guys (Kirk Albers and Adam Bergman), Hilton Clarke on Toyota-United, and Matt Winstead on Inferno all came into the break, and then things got really good just a lap later when Tom Soladay made it into the move. Two of seven ain't too shabby! However, after some tactical miscommunication, Tom had thought the move was going to get brought back and attacked the move solo, hoping some others would come up to it as the group was catching. The break never came back at all, and instead Tom sat out in the wind, solo, for a number of laps and burned himself badly, later having to drop out of the break and the race altogether. Things got even worse for us when John Puffer, an excellent sprinter, bridged up to our group solo . . . things just went from TWO in seven with a strong sprinter and a strong leadout to ONE in seven with just a strong leadout, against THREE Roadhouse guys and their top sprinter! Don't even forget about Hilton, who was pulling so hard he almost dropped the break each time he hit the wind . . .

I knew once Tom was out of the race that I had no duty to pull in the break, so I bided my time and tried to save my legs as much as possible. Sure enough, the group sat up a little when it was clear that we were gone for good, and we were quickly approaching the tail end of the field. I knew that this was a crucial moment: Hilton didn't want to take the break with him when we lapped because he was outgunned by a stacked Roadhouse team and many Inferno guys. Roadhouse didn't even want to lap at all, because three in seven is much better than being caught up in the big field. Therefore, Hilton was going to attack the move soon and try to get to the field, then work with Heath Blackgrove and Sean Sullivan to drive the field and prevent Roadhouse and our break from making it a lap up. I also knew that I couldn't wait for Hilton to attack because I probably wouldn't be able to follow his acceleration . . .

I decided I needed to get to the front and DRIVE the break up to the field to make sure Hilton didn't drop us and let Roadhouse start attacking Matt and me. I pulled us up about 10 seconds on the field in two laps, and then got to the front and found my last teammate in the race, Adam (all the other guys had dropped out due to the heat!). I made sure to rest and recover as much as possible while staying glued to Adam's wheel and keeping out of trouble. The final few laps got a bit hairy, but we could see that it was being set up as a field sprint by Roadhouse.

A large gambler's prime was laid on the line (this is a big-money prize for the winner of the penultimate lap, given to shake things up in the race even more than usual!), and the race began to detonate . . . unfortunately I almost crashed after getting my handlebars clipped by an Inferno guy and dropped from the top-15 to outside the top-30 with just 1.5 laps to go! Thus began a frantic solo chase at eyes-bleeding-pace to try and salvage my sprint for the line.

Roadhouse guys were strewn across the road like a tornado had hit their leadout train, and I was just dodging guys right and left as I blazed though the shattered field to get to the front. With just two turns to go, I saw Adam on Matt Winstead's wheel, and I kept drilling it and reached them in the final turn. Adam had planned to sprint Matt and take 8th, first in the field, but saw me coming from behind and swung wide. I hit the turn hot and carried my momentum through to just barely edge Matt out at the line for the last podium spot!

It was an excellent race for me, and really boosted my confidence after a tough first season on the pro circuit and confirmed to me that I am actually coming back from my car accident on May 5th. It also salvaged the race for Time Pro Cycling, as I know most of the guys were really bummed about dropping out. Third is our top result in an NRC race to date!

Adam, BBQ and I went out looking for some dinner and some nice quality brews (Adam is a learned connoisseur, so it's always fun drinking $10 beers with him), then hung out a bit at the Third Street Dive after our cute waitress said it was a fun place and that she was interested in meeting up with us after work! Things didn't pan out, but we still had a good time and got to relax a bit after a tough day on the bike.


The next day's criterium was a more laid-back affair, with 1/3 the prize money and no NRC status, but most of the same guys from Saturday (save for Hilton) showed up. We knew that it would be a battle of the teams, Inferno vs. Roadhouse vs. Time. From the gun, the entire team was up near the front, guys swapping off being in moves and initiating moves and getting primes. I knew it was going to be a good race.

It was only 60 minutes, and not as hot nor as challenging a course as the day before, so getting a break to stick was going to be pure luck of the draw and timing. It didn't stop me from trying, though. At 45 minutes into the race, I had just sat up a little after being off the front and seeing a mad Roadhouse chase behind me. I noticed the Tom had been sitting on them, ready to pounce and counter my move, so I swung wide in the left Turn 3 to let him come in on the inside before I closed the door. This was the perfect place to go, as Turns 4, 5, and 6 came in quick progression and were very tight, so it was very easy to get a big gap and carry your speed while the group bunched up. Unfortunately--and I still don't know exactly what happened--I high-sided after clipping a pedal.

For those of you unfamiliar with the term, it comes from motorcycle racing and happens when the rear brake is applied in a turn, locking the rear wheel for a second and sliding the bike a little, before being released and hooking up again. When the rear wheel regains traction, the bike is out of line and actually flicks the rider upright and over to the outside of the turn. This is a very serious problem, and often leads to the death of the rider on twisty mountain roads as he is thrown into or over the guardrail down into a ditch or down the mountain.

Luckily I was only going 24mph when it happened, but nonetheless I landed really hard on my right hip and the back of the head. I started screaming from the pain, and had to stay down in the road for three laps while the pack maneuvered around me. I thought my pelvis was broken . . .

I finally got helped off the course, had my slight road rash attended to, and then tried to walk around a little. The good news: no breaks or fractures. The bad news: incredibly stiff, painful to move, and painful to walk. However, Mike Stoop and Tom Soladay setup an excellent leadout for Adam and we won the race! I was very happy that the team was successful, and it definitely capped off an excellent weekend.

I am now trying to heal up and get ready for a final 15-day training block leading into U23 Nationals. The pelvis is getting better each day, but it is still very stiff. I can ride--it actually feels better to ride than to get up and walk around!--and I have just taken the past three days pretty easy. I don't think me preparation will be compromised too much, and I have the confidence from the past couple of weekends to take with me into my training block and Nationals.

BBQ and I have been hanging out at Jamie Bennette's house (our team's main sponsor) and dying of boredom . . . I am really looking forward to getting in some good rides and then doing a sweet racing schedule in August: Crossroads criteriums in late July, the U23 Nationals August 6-10, Downer's Grove USPRO Criterium the following weekend on the 16-17, Chris Thater and a couple other local NY races August 21-24, then the big show with USPRO RR and TT in South Carolina followed by the 100k Classic and the Univest RR and criterium!

Thanks a lot for reading, I'll try to post some updates on my injury and my training in the next week!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

An up-and-down Tour of PA and a podium at Iron Hill

Eric Barlevav taking 3rd in a slip-and-slide final Tour of Pennsylvania criterium, Pittsburgh

Well, Tour of PA came and went . . . we did very well on Stages 1a and 1b, with 7th, 8th, and 15th in the prologue (Andy Baker became Best Young Rider, then Stoop, and then me) followed by a good showing in the technical, sketchy criterium with our sprinter Eric Barlevav getting boxed in for 5th and me following with the leadout for 20th.

Stage 2 went even better, as Eric and I made it into the winning move of the day and I helped drive it to get over 2 minutes on the shattered field. I lead out the strongman-sprint, but BBQ's legs were sapped and he managed 7th behind a super-strong Kevin Lacombe and Kelly Team. I rolled in for 12th, moving up into 8th overall.

Then Stage 3 broke us! The plan was to be aggressive and get into the early move, because there was a huge KOM 65 miles into the 105 mile stage. Unfortunately, there was a considerable headwind and we killed ourselves to get the move to stick. Andy made it into the break, but BBQ and I were shot from the previous day's efforts and everyone pretty much got shelled on the climb. From there, we just had some damage control in the grupetto, but basically the general classification goals for the team went out the window.

Stage 4 was shorter, only 60 miles, but with some serious climbing, and we just went out to make the time cut so that we could perform on Stages 5 and 6.

And perform we did: Stage 5 was a nasty saw-tooth profile with dozens of leg-breaking one-minute steep hills and some serious crosswind sections to boot. We all managed to make it into the final circuits, and The Gutt said he was feeling fantastic so we decided to setup the sprint for him. Things started to break apart on the run-in to the circuits, and we made sure a guy was in every move . . . unfortunately, our efforts were in vain and probably sapped us a bit for the final 5k. I was on the front through most of the final 9k of circuits (3 laps of 3k), and put in some serious pulls, but misjudged where we were on the course in the final lap and was not ready for the insane Kelly Train when they came over the top at over 35mph! Stoop tried valiantly to latch on, but a 10 foot gap to David Veilluex's wheel was impossible to close, and The Gutt's sprint never really happened.

The team's moral was bolstered after seriously disappointing Stages 3 and 4, and we were once again confident that we were one of the strongest teams and could ride the front at the end of a killer stage. Things didn't work out right, but we were all looking forward to the final criterium in Pittsburgh on Sunday.

Unfortunately the rain started pouring after about 30 minutes of racing. The whole team had been on the front controlling things and neutralizing attacks at 30mph, hoping to setup Eric Barlevav for a final stage-winning sprint. The plans went out the window when my front wheel slid out in the first brick-laden turn and I hit my head pretty hard . . . the race was neutralized do to threats of a tornado, but then restarted (at the behest of the entire peloton!) because it was being covered live on Versus nationwide. We raced hard, but my legs locked up from the gun and I couldn't get the confidence to stay at the front through the corners. My race was over, along with most of the peloton, as the race was being run as a one-day race with no overall consequences for the Tour. Stoop, Andy, and The Gutt worked hard for Barlevav, but in the end only The Gutt was left at the front to work with Slipstream-VMG in the final laps. Barlevav was on Daniel Holloway's wheel in third position into the final turn, but a gap opened and that was all she wrote. Barlevav got on the podium with 3rd place, which was a nice consolation after a very tough week.

We got back in the van and jetted on Monday morning, leaving at 8AM and arriving in Winston-Salem at 2AM after making multiple stops to drop guys (and girls, our souigneurs!) off along the way. The Gutt and I got in some good training before heading 10 hours BACK UP TO PHILLY (!!!) for the Iron Hill twilight criterium . . .

We knew before the race that we were the largest team, but also that Toshiba was a force to be reckoned with. From the gun the race was super fast with constant attacks. I got a $100 prime, but shortly after Heckman got away from us solo. We didn't have all of our guys up front at that point, and the two laps that were required for us to organize and chase him down were just enough for him to get out of sight and start building his gap--and build it he did! Every lap the gap went up a second or two, with me, Tom Soladay, Mike Stoop, and David Guttenplan chasing our hearts out. Toshiba just sat on us and messed up the rotation a few times, but none of the other teams (read Batley-Harley Davidson and Inferno) helped out much at all.

We were definitely behind the 8-ball, especially after Travieso attacked our chase at the front and started to ride away. Guttenplan pulled through strongly through the final uphill turn, and I let the gap open up just enough for him to get away solo. I didn't think this was wise, as I have never seen The Gutt bridge any type of a gap before, but I was pretty blown anyway and thought it might be nice to get another couple riders to do some work for a little while. However, The Gutt rolled away doing 30+mph and bridged up to Travieso! Those two were up the road racing for second place when Heckman lapped the field and came to the front. In the final minutes of the race, Stoop got off the front with some hangers-on and ended up taking 7th, while The Gutt edged out Travieso in an excellent sprint for 2nd place!

I was proud to have enough left in the legs to do the leadout for Adam in the field (Barlevav took a nasty spill in the infamous third corner earlier in the race) and I rode from 3-to-do to 1-to-go before Heckman and Yosvany (both on Toshiba) came over the top, Adam right on board in third wheel. He got a little boxed in at the end, but managed 12th place, while I completely blew on the last lap and rolled in dead last of the 40 guys who finished the race.

It was great to have the team up on the podium in a tough race, and confirmed our abilities in the USA Crits series with Adam moving up into 3rd overall and Time Pro Cycling 2nd in the team overall classification, nipping at the heels of Toshiba! Our main goals for the rest of the season include the USA Crits series, U23 Nationals in Los Angeles, CA, USPRO Criterium Nationals in Downers Grove, IL, and the Univest Grand Prix in eastern Pennsylvania.

Early on in the race, first corner . . .

Stoop tries a move without much help.

Sitting in the front 15 early on.

Later on it got dark, and the chase began.

Boy did it begin!

I think I was going after a prime or something . . . it is all a blur.

In the heat of the chase now.

A Time among Toshibas . . .

It felt like I never really got OFF the front the entire race. Here below is a nice leadout sequence with 2 laps to go . . .

Then with one to go Heckman came over the top with Yosvany and Myerson on third wheel . . .

I was definitely hurting a little here.

The Gutt definitely earned his 2nd place and put Time in a good spot!

What a sprint!

The Gutt up there in 2nd with the big boys (and me admiring the scenery :-)

All in all, a good showing by Time Pro Cycling. This coming weekend we are traveling to Louisville, Kentucky for the Metro Police Force NRC race on Saturday and another big-money criterium on Sunday. It is not on the USA Crits series, but only 7 hours away, so we are going to RIP!

Thanks for reading.