2009 – 4th RR
The Prineville 30K out and back time trail course was the same one used in 2012. My main challengers were Dave Bailey (Truckee Bicycle Team) starting 30 seconds behind me and defending champion Richard Feldman (Durance Colnago) starting last at 1 minute back. I tend to go out too easy in TTs and really power the 2nd half so I made sure to get a good warm-up and planned to start the 1st half harder than I ever have before.
At 9:45:00 I rolled down the start ramp & was focused on catching my 30 sec man Dan Bryant (Folsom Bike). I knew I was going well when I caught him and then my minute man Matt Carinio (Rock Solid Cycling) before the turn around. After the turn I got my one check point on Bailey and Feldman and by my estimation they were still at 30 sec and 60 sec back. At this point I got an adrenaline rush thinking this could be the day! I left it all out there and when I crossed the line felt satisfied that this was my best TT I had ever ridden. After I slowed down and came back to the finish I saw my dad with a frown on his face holding up 2 fingers. I had finished 2nd to Feldman and the initial report was that I had lost by 0.22 sec (later revised to 0.84 sec). Second was my best Nationals placing ever and I was very happy with it, but losing by less than a second really stung!
There were 81 starters & perfect weather conditions for the start of our 112K road race. I only had 2 teammates, Ken Gallardo & Greg McQuaid, but also had a friend in Jeff Galland (ZIPZ Cycling Team) and our plan was simple. Don’t let anything dangerous get away and set me up to launch on the final climb 8K out form the finish. 2012 winner Matt Carinio (Rock Solid Cycling) also had a solid team with him and the same race plan. The 1st 2:15 of the race was pretty uneventful for me, just sitting in at 40-50 kph and staying hydrated while the guys at the front rode tempo and chased down attacks. Then at 95K we had the first steep pitch of the finish climb and I went off the front with a 90% attack to warm up the legs, but as I expected was chased down immediately. As I slowed Dave Bailey (Truckee Bicycle Team) pulled through and rolled off the front and got a gap. My teammate Greg gave chase and bridged up to him and they were followed by a couple more guys. I sat back a few wheels as we hit the little descent before the final 8K climb and waited for the inevitable final attacks to launch and sure enough it was Carinio who made the big attack when it got steep. I immediately chased and as I was catching him we were leaving everyone else behind and went right by the 4 break away riders, each now on his own with Bailey the final man caught.
At 6K to go it was just Carinio and me with 15 seconds on a hard chasing Feldman & a few others just behind him. Carinio had put in the huge move to get us away so now I was working with him to keep us from getting caught, but knew that my only chance for a win was to get away solo since he has a great sprint. With 4K to go it got really really dark. I had never seen it get so dark so fast & had to remove my sunglasses.
I wanted to wait for Ken too, but I was starting to shiver and had to go pee in a cup for USADA. Ken, his job done for the day, had taken shelter under a tree when the big hail came, but still got back on the bike to finish 70th.