Message from the guy who runs Marc Pro – Strava:
Your last blog was OK, but I feel your tittle was too vague. How about putting the name of the race in it? Or at least somewhere in the body – the people who read your blog (your mom, maybe your dad) want to know what event you are talking about. Also, after some discussion by the team (which you can review the thread in our google group), we have decided that all of your posts need a picture of a hamburger.
My original plans for this weekend was just the Cat 1,2 Land Park Crit on Saturday and the the Collegiate crit in Berkeley on Sunday. One time I was asked “You can do collegiate races?” I said “Yeah, why? Cause I’m hella good?” and I got back “No, cause your hella old”. Little self esteem booster there. Maybe the surprise should have been that I am in college because I can’t spell, have terrible grammatical structure and use the word ‘hella’.
So, my original plan was what is above, but that changed when I heard about the $150 omnium for the Masters 30+. My new plan was to race the masters race, get my butt handed to me by Evan Huffman in the senior race (really, that was my plan) and then race the Bariani road race Sunday if my placing in the crit justified it. I did not really train that much last week between midterms and not wanting to get my new bike dirty in the rain.
While standing around talking to people before the race I meet my new team mate Nate Freed. Its always awkward meeting people for the first time when you are wearing the same kit. I also got a chance to talk to Jason Peterson from the US Military Cycling Team, sporting his new red-white and blue kit with FRS energy labels all over it.
The Master’s race was pretty uneventful. Guys attacked, guys got caught, we did circles. Nate pulled in a couple of threatening break attempts and was keeping me at the front on the last lap when we started to get swarmed on the left side. I switched flows of traffic and tried to get in on the Morgan Stanly lead out train. The second Morgan Stanley guy (Chris Baker) was not giving up the wheel, so I tried the third one (John Fairbanks). He “let me know” he had no intention of giving up Chris’s wheel so I slotted in behind him. Lucky fo me he was the perfect lead-out to the line and I won – narrowly beating AJ Kennedy. Trippy thing, I raced against AJ in the 80’s when he was on Plymouth-Reebok. Somethings never change.
The 1,2 race was all the Evan Huffman show. NorCal has been watching a lot of that channel lately. I had one more teammate, Donald Hahn in this one as well as Nate. The race unfolded something like this:
I attacked, got brought back in.
Rand Miller attacked, got brought back in.
Rand and I attack, got back in.
Before I can recover…
Evan attacks, lights out, game over
Evan lays waste to 3 poor souls at various points and time along the course.
We catch all but one of them before Evan crosses the line for the win.
I tried to get across and even came pretty close, but could not seal the deal. Rand Miller had me pretty well covered. I was initially going to post a picture here of a pimple on a butt to describe what Rand was like, but the google images that came up in the search for “pimple on butt” would have got me kicked off the team. Eewww!
Nate and Donald tried valiantly to pull them back in. a few others jumped away in the last few laps too – including Pete Knudson. I ended up 7th, 2nd in the field sprint almost catching the Knudson group.
Day 2 was the Bariani Road Race. No cat 1,2 race was offered but there was a huge 30+ field. The race was very well run – all SGW events are. The prizes are cash (cash is good) and Bariani Olive Oil (which is also good) to the top finishers. The registration was out of the Bariani factory too near Zamora. There were the same three of us Marc Pro-Strava guys again.
Although rain threatened the race the night before, it was sunny and cold. Nate opting out of leg or knee warmers chose to use Donald’s embrocation which proved to be too hot for him causing him to cramp up and complain that he was “on fire”.I was yelling “please don’t let the invisible fire burn my friend!”
Added to the finishing place and omnium prize list was a KOM prize, which really was more like a hot spot or sprint than a KOM because the climb was really short – more like a power climb. I had not intended on going for it but ended up getting 1st three times and 2nd twice out of 6 laps because it was the best spot on the course to attack.The finish was a few miles after it. On the last lap I wasn’t sure if I had the KOM because a rider in yellow had also been doing well and so I was torn between hoping I had it and saving for the finish or going for it and trying to recover and then sprint. I went for it. Lucky for me after the KOM the field went REAL slow, I fully recovered and got 2nd in the field sprint, securing the omnium.
There was some issue over center-line violations and relegations and stuff after the road race, but the officials withdrew it all in fairness to the riders because they did not enforce the imaginary line at the start finish during the race and it was impossible to tell where it was in the sprint (white piece of electrical tape immediately after a rise in the road that you don’t see until you have crested and are on it). Word on the street was that most of the Masters 50+ were relegated, but it was reversed.