I can sum up this past weekend of racing with one word, "Painfest". At least for me it was. I picked a whooper of a first stage race. Feeling grossly under prepared, I showed up for the road race ready to have my butt handed to me on a silver platter by some of MABRA's finest climbers...and they did not hesitate to put me in my place. After the first lap around that course, I didn't think I would make it until the end. Fortunately I did, but losing so much time to the leader and knowing I can't time trial my GC hopes were quickly put to rest so I knew the rest of the weekend would be pure fun.
The time trial was my first. I don't really know what to say about it since I have nothing to compare it to. I know there was a super headwind at the turn around. I didn't catch anyone, but I didn't get caught either. Then came the crit. Finally an event I knew I had a chance in, at least for some stage glory. This crit was fun as well. I was pretty close to quitting within the first 5 or 6 laps, but finally the legs started to come around and I was able to get into my own zone. I knew if the race came down to it, I was feeling confident enough that I could win it in a field sprint. With 1 to go, there were two guys kind of off the front that I thought we would catch. We were doing pretty good at making up ground but coming into the last corner a bike rack guy clipped his pedal and everyone behind him had to slow down and scatter for different lines. Fortunately for me I was about 4 wheels back and was still able to maintain a good line through the turn. I started the sprint from pretty far out because I knew I could hold it but it wasn't enough to catch the guys up the rode so I ended up in 3rd.
Big congratulations to Mr. Rugg. I know he isn't my teammate and all but I was really rooting for him to take the overall win this weekend. As hard as he's been working, he deserved the result he got. Also, watching his teammate, Tim Brown, dominate in the crit was awesome. I must confess that at the beginning of the season I though the Bike Rack guys were just a bunch of squirrely dudes, but my view of their team and tactics has done a complete 180 as the seasons progressed. Keep up the hard work fellas!