Sunday, November 18, 2012

Boss Cross 5&6

Boss Cross 5

After Boss Cross 3 and 4 I had enough points to take the leaders jersey from Richard Hu. That made this weekend of racing a little more interesting to say the least. As it stood, I had a 7 point lead over Richard (2nd) and a 10 point lead over 3rd (Josh Taylor) going into this weekend. With that in mind, at the minimum I had to finish on Richards wheel or ahead of him to maintain possession of the leaders jersey. Oh yeah, and make sure Josh didn't get between us if he raced, which he didn't on Saturday...that made my life a little easier FO SHO!!!! To make things even more interesting, I felt about half crappy when I woke up on Friday...that stayed with me all day and felt about the same on Saturday morning, but there was no way in hell I wasn't gonna line up with the leaders jersey on my back.

On to the race...I managed a 3rd today. Michael Smith took the top step, Richard 2nd and me to round out the podium. At the gun, Richard drilled it from the start, no worries, I hit the pedal and went straight to his wheel. After about 6 turns it was Richard, Mike and myself with a gap and riding away from the field. We get to a long gravel path and with about 100 meters left Mike goes to the front and starts driving. He pulls a small gap of about 20 meters, so I wait a few seconds more and when I hit the grass again I drill it and jump across the gap. This lasted all of about 3 seconds, Richard was there quickly as we were still on the first lap. At that point I decide to ride Mike's wheel for a while and soon realize that this is going to end quickly with a huge just about the time we end the first lap I ease up and let him ride away, Richard comes around and takes up the pace making. I wasn't going to work with him initially but thought it would be a good idea to put more time on the field to ensure no one got between us to take points.

For the next 4 laps he and I took turns and put more time on the field with each lap. Going into 2 to go, I'm starting to suffer pretty good. About a 1/4 of the way through that lap I was on the verge of blowing up, so I take a look behind and no one is within a 1/4 mile and Mike has set sail, so I eased up and let Richard go. I didn't want to but I think it was going to happen whether I wanted to or not. So I maintain a good pace and ride the last lap and a half solo to finish in 3rd.

Not a great day, but not a bad one either. As I write this I still feel kinda crappy and run down and wasn't feeling even close to 100% today. Hopefully I will be back to normal tomorrow. I did tell Richard I won't be doing any work on Sunday!! I say that now...I'm sure if I need to, to ensure a solid race, I will. It's his job to take it from me and that's not going to happen!! If an opportunity presents itself to ride away from him I will definitely take it, but as it stands, he's not going anywhere without me.


Boss Cross 6


I was obviously feeling better today and decided to stamp my authority on this race. At the gun I didn't get the best start but managed to slot into 3rd behind Richard and Josh. This didn't set well with me with Josh between Richard and myself so at the first opportunity I go to the front and proceed to drill it. I sat on the front for about a lap and a half, at this point it was just the 3 of us and we were riding away from the rest of the field.

Content with the situation I wave Richard through and take a break. I guess the accelerations Richard and I were making out of the turns finally took their toll on Josh and we rode away from him. Now, I decided it would be a good idea to work together to increase our gap to 3rd, which we did. The next 3 or 4 laps were uneventful.

During my course inspection I decided to ride a ditch that wasn't rideable the day before for various reasons, but going the opposite direction it was. I rode it 4 or 5 times during inspection and had it down. On to the last lap, I was on the front for a bit and thought it was time to "play the game". I wave Richard through and made sure I hit my lines and was on the gas coming out of the turns. With about a 1/3rd of a lap to go we were on a long gravel path, Richard decided to slow and try to allow the 50+ leader with Josh on his wheel to catch us. I realize this, go around and lift the pace. That simply wasn't an option I was willing to entertain. Still on the front, we are headed to the section with the ditch, I decided to put in a good dig coming out of a turn that lead to a short section of gravel path and pulled my foot off the pedal...that didn't work.

Now in the final complex of turns leading to the ditch and I'm still driving. As we approach, Richard rolls past me as I set up to ride the ditch. He dismounts, I ride it, he remounts and leaves the door open on the inside line to the following left, I move left and start to pass, as I draw along side he has missed his pedal and we bump shoulders, this pushed me towards the course post. Having mad ninja skills on a bike, I managed to squeeze by and take the lead. I punch it for all I'm worth to try and get a gap and it was for naught.

The rest of the course after the ditch was a chicane to a 90 degree left, about a 100 meter grass straight to a 90 degree right onto the 150 meter-ish finishing straight which was pavement. As we exited the chicane I drill it so he won't come by. We come flying onto the pavement and I grab a couple of gears and punch it again and held him off for the win.

It was a tactical battle today, it was a blast!! A win to seal up the leaders jersey...what better way to end the series and represent the leaders jersey!!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Colavita and Boulevard Cup

Pics courtesy of Matt (I'm a Bad Mutha F**ka cuz my wallet says so) Cunningham

Colavita Cup

I'm a little late with this post for a ton of reasons, the main one is I'm really lazy sometimes!!!

I was just off the podium on Saturday, 4th out of 19. The Colavita track was a good course with a decent mix of high speed and technical off camber twisty stuff and one big climb...

At the gun I hit the pedal and get a good start, I settle into 3rd behind Roger Williams and an Slimmen und Grossen rider. The pace was pretty fast from the gun but I'm feelin good so no worries. I move into 2nd when the Slimmen rider bobbles at the first downhill off camber 180. I sit on Rogers wheel for the first 2 laps suffering pretty good, he seemed to be on a mission today and was riding well.

The 3rd time up the hill he got a gap and I couldn't close it. A 50+ Trek rider and a 40+ teammate of his go by me and proceed to ride away also. Now in 3rd, Josh Taylor was on my wheel and wasn't going to come around so I just maintain the current pace and keep on rollin.

On the 4th lap I bobbled a little on one of the downhill off camber 180s and Josh went by me. No worries I got on his wheel straight away. On the next lap he gapped me a little, about 40 feet, and this was how we stayed until I dug my pedal into an off camber section which lifted my rear wheel and made me slide out...down to the ground I went. The damage was done at that point, I got going and kept the hammer down but the gap remained the same on lap 6.

On the final lap 7, I was still charging and brought him back a little but in the end the little mistakes I made created a gap that was more than I could overcome that late in the race.

I felt pretty good overall and had a good ride other than the obvious, Roger ended up 2nd to a Trek rider from Omaha, who was a very small person...a classic climber if you will.

Boulevard Cup

A few more steps away from the podium on Sunday. I ended up 6th outta 26...not bad considering the size of the field. Whilst I was doing my inspection I heard rumblings of Shadd Smith is here...I thought great...there goes 1st...he's a bad man and if he's at a race that early it can only mean one thing, racing masters. Oh well, It didn't really bother me because in racing you just never know til it's over.

So we line up and it's official, he comes rollin up last. I say to him, why do you hate us? He responded with " I have soccer games"...good answer! Anyway, they finally let us go, and I get a good start and settle in behind Roger Williams for second wheel. We drag race for at least 1/4 mile with a good section being sidewalk. Just about the time we leave the sidewalk Mr. Smith comes blazin by and takes over the front of the race right before we hit the off camber switchback section.

I guess it pays to get good starts because not a second after the 3 of us had cleared the first set of switch backs, a slower rider with more ability to pedal than to handle a bike, can't negotiate the first switch back while riding and proceeds to blow through the tape into oncoming racers and plows one of them and causes another to flip.

I heard this carnage but didn't realize how close it really was, I never saw the guy coming down and had no idea he went, more or less, right behind me until I saw the 3rd video below, which was the first one posted to youtube. My jaw literally dropped open from how close it was.

The guy that got plowed first is Prayuth Sirasudi, he ended up with a DNF...Mr. No Skillz cost Prayuth a helmet, and a frame, Prayuth told me the top tube and down tube of his NEW frame were cracked...and a concusion for the cherry on top...

Moving on...The first 2 laps has Shadd riding away leaving Roger and I to fight it out. Lap 3 we get passed by 2 more riders and eventually the guy that flipped in the video catches us and rides away leaving Roger and I in 5th and 6th.

As the race progresses Roger puts in good dig here and there, I try to make a move on occasion and he would counter. Eventually I decide to sit on his wheel because it's clear he's not gonna let me by without a huge effort.

With about 1 and 1/4 laps to go we both blast through the sand pit, run the railroad ties, hit the side walk to remount and this is where the end came for I set my bike down and went to grab the bar I missed and hit the brake lever with the palm of my hand, I recover and remount and had to sprint to get back to his wheel.

The sidewalk section was about 100 feet long which lead to a 90 degree left onto the grass. My holy shit he's riding away from me effort had me going pretty fast so I reach for the brakes and the rear lever is not where it's supposed to be, so I almost blow the turn and when I get squared away on the grass I look at my lever and I had more or less pulled the plunger out of the piston on the lever that drives the over...I finish the race in no mans land crossing in 6th place...

I'm thinkin my mojo was just a bit off this past weekend...can't be great every race.