Ben Spies “I’ve got some big news in the next month on the cycling team”

Big-Bear-TT-4

Ben Spies “I’ve got some big news in the next month on the cycling team”

Ben Spies has admitted the serious shoulder injury that forced him into premature retirement last year will never recover sufficiently enough to allow the Texan race again.

The triple American superbike champion first damaged his right shoulder at the end of 2012 when he crashed out of a rain-lashed Malaysian round while riding for Yamaha’s factory squad.

Spies moved to the Ignite Ducati squad for 2013 but he only appeared in the first two rounds in Qatar and Circuit of the Americas before he had to take an extended absence from racing to recover.

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Two Podium Finishes for 5-hour ENERGY Presented by Kenda Racing Team At Sea Otter

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Two Podium Finishes for 5-hour ENERGY Presented by Kenda Racing Team At Sea Otter; Rosters for Winston-Salem and Joe Martin Confirmed

 

GAINESVILLE, GEORGIA (April 17, 2014) — The 5-hour ENERGY® presented by Kenda Racing Team rounded off their California trip with two podium finishes and numerous sponsor visits at the Subaru Sea Otter Classic this past weekend. The team now sets its sights on the next events on the USA Cycling National Racing Calendar and National Criterium Calendar, the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic and the Joe Martin Stage Race.

 

“After a long absence from the Sea Otter Classic, the 5-hour ENERGY team presented by Kenda returned to this incredible event to showcase our partnership with our sponsors. With a solid showing of teamwork, the team placed Sam Bassetti on the podium in the criterium and Jake Keough on the podium in the circuit race. The team’s attendance in the expo area, on multiple days, was a great success as the team visited many of the sponsors that help the team. The riders enjoyed learning about the new products available and it was a small thank you for the support they give to our program.” said Directeur Sportif Frankie Andreu.

 

The 5-hour ENERGY team will head next to North Carolina to race the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic which includes a National Racing Calendar/UCI road race and a National Criterium Calendar (NCC) race from April 18-19. Seven riders will then contest the Joe Martin Stage Race presented by Nature Valley in and around Fayetteville, Arkansas from April 24-27.

 

Roster for Winston-Salem Cycling Classic

Chad Beyer (Tucson, Ariz.)

Bruno Langlois (Quebec City, Quebec)

Christian Parrett (Macon, Georgia)

Taylor Shelden (Louisville, Colo.)

Bobby Sweeting (Asheville, N.C.)

David Williams (Grand Rapids, Mich.)

The Winston-Salem Cycling Classic, a USA Cycling-sanctioned event with a total purse of approximately $50,000, will take place in downtown Winston-Salem, N.C., and surrounding areas. The UCI 1.2 road race, on Friday April 18, features 8956 ft of total elevation gain over the 120-mile course. The 75-minute NCC criterium on Saturday, which is also a USA CRITS Series race, takes place on a 0.9-mile loop through downtown Winston-Salem. Both races will be streamed live via the USA CRITS Championship Series YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/usacritsseries).

 

Roster for Joe Martin Stage Race presented by Nature Valley

Sam Bassetti (Santa Rosa, Calif.)

Bruno Langlois (Quebec City, Quebec)

Chad Beyer (Tucson, Ariz.)

Jake Keough (Sandwich, Mass.)

Christian Parrett (Macon, Georgia)

Bobby Sweeting (Asheville, N.C.)

David Williams (Grand Rapids, Mich.)

The Joe Martin Stage Race will mark its 12th anniversary as a National Racing Calendar event in 2014. Stage 1, on April 24, is the individual time trial on a 2.5-mile course in the Devil’s Den State Park. Stage 2 on April 25, is the 110-mile road race with 5,300 feet of elevation gain. Stage 3 on Saturday is the 114-mile road race and includes four laps of a rolling 23-mile loop. Event concludes on April 27 with Stage 4, the 85-minute criterium raced on 1.2-mile course with a tough climb to the finish line.

 

 

Who doesn’t like a sea otter?

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By:

Alison M. Tetrick

TWENTY16 Pro Cycling

Who doesn’t like a sea otter?  My favorite part about the Sea Otter Classic, is the fact that it revolves around a cuddle craving mammal known for its playful nature.  Sure, I have heard the race referred to as the Sea Slaughter, but of course that interpretation depends on how you are feeling when racing.  Me?  I prefer playful and cuddly.

 

The Sea Otter Classic continues to be one of my favorite races on the calendar because it gives me the opportunity to feel mildly uncool when compared to the mountain bikers and other dirt trick riders.  I love immersing myself within the different disciplines and appreciating what a wide range of talent and skill our sport contains.  Anything that you dare to dream of within the cycling industry is there.  If you like bikes, you will feel like you are a kid in a candy shop.  And then the best part is, you can then go race your bike!

 

As a road racer on the panel of Rebecca Rusch’s Gold Rusch Tour presented by SRAM, I realized how the diversity of the sport is inspiring and the options are endless.  Especially for women!  I may not be able to do a backflip on my bike like one of the other women on the panel, but we all can inspire to get more women out on bikes and enjoying the sense of freedom and empowerment that only a bike can give.  I am happy to give back to a sport that I love, and that has given me so much growth and learning opportunities.

 

Team TWENTY16 was happy to attend another year of the Sea Otter Classic with a contingency of our elite team as well as our junior roster.  Our juniors were on the podium every day, which left a tall order for our professional team!  Fortunately, we also were able to secure a great team race and hold up our side of the podium pendulum.  Cycling is a team sport, and although this is often stated, it is always more gratifying when a good team plan sorts itself according to expectations.  After a quick and dirty crit, where our token Canadian rider, Lex, got 3rd place out of break, we entered the road race that always proves to be challenging.  There is something about Fort Ord that leaves you feeling a bit more reflective, perhaps morose, yet somehow stronger, which I can only attribute to the Steinbeck terrain.  The team raced cohesively and hard, which allowed me to take a late solo flyer on the final lap in order to secure the win.  Lex finished with a brilliant kick the bunch uphill sprint for 2nd place.

 

Podiums are always fun, but they are more fun after your pain brings champagne, and of course a fluffy little sea otter.  Like I said, who doesn’t love a sea otter?  And who doesn’t like winning?  In life if you don’t risk something, you risk everything.  And that holds true in bike racing.  Bike racing is always hard, and late moves don’t always work, but that is what a team is for.  And when those late attacks work, they prove to turn that pain into champagne.  We finished the circuit with more podiums and more fun to celebrate a great team race with not only the women on my team, but also our sponsors and team of supporters at the Sea Otter Classic.

 

 

 

Team Swift Race Reports (March)

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Team Swift Race Reports (March)

Race Reports for:

1. Land Park Criterium

2. Bariani Road Race

3. San Dimas Stage Race

4. Madera Stage Race

5. Turlock Road Race

6. UC Berkeley Criterium

7. Grasshopper-Chileno Valley

8. MTB Races #2 & #3

9. Sonoma MTB Race Series #1

10. Del Sol Stage Race

 

 

March Top Results:

1st Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14 Gianni Lamperti

1st Place Land Park Criterium Junior W. 11-12 Isabella Brunner

1st Place Land Park Criterium-Most Aggressive Rider Award Ryan Clarke

1st Place Sonoma Race Series #1 Sport male <35 Luke Lamperti

1st Place Del Sol Stage Race Juniors W. 10-12 Isabella Brunner

2nd Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18 Cat 4/5 Brad Butterfield

2nd Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14 Luke Lamperti

2nd Place Sonoma Race Series #1 Sport male <35 Gianni Lamperti

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, Crit Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, Crit Senior Category 4/5 Tomás Saldaña-Mitre

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, TT Senior Category 4/5 Tomás Saldaña-Mitre

3rd Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14 Isaiah Chass

3rd Place NorCal MTB Race #2 Sophomore boys D2 Cassidy Mountjoy

4th Place Bariani Road Race Senior Category 3 Ben Cook

4th Place NorCal MTB Race #3 Sophomore boys D2 Cassidy Mountjoy

5th Place Land Park Criterium Senior Category 3 Ryan Clarke

5th Place Land Park Criterium Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

5th Place Bariani Road Race Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

5th Place NorCal Race #2 Freshman Ben Cook

5th Place Madera Stage Race, RR Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

5th place Turlock Lake Road Race Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

6th Place San Dimas Stage Race,Crit Juniors 17-18 Ryan Clarke

7th Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18 Cat 4/5 Gianni Lamperti

7th Place NorCal Race #3 Varsity Eli Kranefuss

8th Place San Dimas Stage Race,Crit Juniors 15-16 Ben Cook

8th Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18 Cat 4/5 Luke Lamperti

8th Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14 William Stark

9th Place San Dimas Stage Race,RR Juniors 15-16 Ben Cook

9th Place San Dimas Stage Race,GC Juniors 15-16 Ben Cook

10th Place San Dimas Stage Race,TT Juniors 17-18 Ryan Clarke

10th Place San Dimas Stage Race,TT Juniors 15-16 Ben Cook

10th Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14 Esteban Ramirez

10th Place NorCal Race #2 Varsity Eli Kranefuss

11th Place Madera Stage Race, Crit Senior Category 3 Ryan Clarke

14th Place San Dimas Stage Race,GC Juniors 17-18 Ryan Clarke

14th Place Madera Stage Race,G.C. Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

15th Place Madera Stage Race, TT Senior Category 3 Ryan Clarke

16th Place UC Berkeley Criterium Senior Category 4/5 Tomás Saldaña-Mitre

19th Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18 Cat 4/5 Emmet Pfau

20th Place Madera Stage Race,TT Senior W. Cat 4 Emily Abraham

25th Place San Dimas Stage Race,RR Juniors 17-18 Ryan Clarke

26th Place San Dimas Stage Race TT Juniors 17-18 Jonathan Gunning

32nd Place Grasshopper-Chileno Valley Open Ben Cook

34th Place San Dimas Stage Race,RR Juniors 17-18 Jonathan Gunning

37th Place Land Park Criterium Senior Category 5 Tomás Saldaña-Mitre

 

 

Rider Race Reports

 

1. Land Park Criterium 3/15/14 Sacramento

 

Ryan Clarke

5th Place Land Park Criterium Senior Category 3

1st Place Land Park Criterium-Most Aggressive Rider Award

 

Land Park is always a fun race and since it’s not too far from home I drove myself there so my parents had a break from driving me to races. I didn’t anticipate the amount of people that were there so I ended up driving around for a solid 15 min trying to find a spot to park. When I finally got my gear out of the car I only had 45 minutes until the start. For some reason I didn’t pre-register so I had to find some money (which Mr. Lamperti graciously loaned me) because I forgot that too and by the time I was all changed and ready I had about 20 min until race time. I spun around on the road around the course to loosen my legs up and decided to go with the first couple moves to warm-up. The race started and nobody seemed interested in going fast so I attacked for my warm-up. I knew it wasn’t going to stick but I pushed hard to get my legs going. A couple laps in, they called a prime so I went for it and got it. A few laps later two guys got up the road. Nobody really seemed interested in chasing so I chilled out and relaxed a bit. The gap kept getting bigger and it was making me nervous so I decided to try and bridge solo. I got a solid gap and after a lap I was almost there. I looked back just to see what was up and the field was 5 or so seconds behind me so I went back so someone else would do the chasing. After a few more laps the very lazy field finally brought the break back and I started thinking about the finish. I was feeling good and since I was riding near the front the whole race I knew position wouldn’t be a huge struggle for me. With half a lap to go I was swamped by a bunch of riders which pushed me back a couple spots but I managed to get past them again through the tight corners on the backside of the course. I was sitting 5th wheel on the finishing straight and jumped at 250m. I had a good pop but because it was a flat and slightly tailwind sprint, I had to sit down and spin and I was passed in the last 10m or so. I definitely had good sprint legs and maybe with harder gearing I could have held it to the line, but I was happy with my result. Because I was constantly at the front, I was awarded the most aggressive rider award which was really pretty cool. Overall I was pretty stoked with how things went and I’m looking forward to racing there again next year.

-Ryan

 

Emily Abraham

5th place Land Park Criterium Senior Wm Category 4

 

This was my fourth time racing on this criterium course, which meant I knew the course fairly well compared to the other women in the race. I was feeling good when I arrived early for the race, my legs felt rested and ready to perform. There was plenty of time for me to go to registration, get changed, and begin my warm-up. It was nice to have that little bit of extra time before the race, it allowed for a stress free start. After a spin on the trainer and a painful pyramid, I headed to the start line for junior roll-out.

Since there’s a bit of a technical section on the backside of this course, we first had a neutral lap for those who had never raced it before. When the real race started, I positioned myself as second wheel. Once we were about forty-five seconds into the race, a woman on my left made an attack. Of course I went after her which wasn’t too smart since she didn’t get very far. I stayed on her wheel for the first and most of the second lap. The second lap was a prime and I was second wheel so when a woman behind me started sprinting, I went too. I was able to out sprint her and I won the prime. The race was interesting, lots of attacks and a fast pace. I stayed up towards the front as much as I could without pulling. Normally in criteriums I spend too much time on the front and I waste too much energy. I made sure not to do that as much during this race. Expect instead of taking too long of pulls, I went after too many attacks. There were quite a few attacks that didn’t really make a break, that I went after anyways, which just ended up causing me to lose energy. On the last lap, the entire pack was still together. I was positioned well for my sprint but I began sprinting too late. I ended up in fifth place and won three primes so I was happy and had a great race.

-Emily

 

Gianni Lamperti

Age 13 Juniors 13-14

 

1st Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14

 

When I started my warm-up I did not feel 100%, but I knew I would feel great after some hard pyramids. I had two other teammates at the start of the race with me and our tactic was to attack right from the gun and then keep countering till one of us got off the front. The whistle blew and my teammate Isaiah attacked. Then another person chased and as soon as we caught them I countered. I had about a 10 second gap by two laps of being off the front by myself. There was a good headwind on the backside of the course. It was very hard but all I was thinking to myself was I can do it. My favorite part of the course was the chicane. I looked forward to it every lap because I could rest for one second and it was also high speed and fun. I went as hard as I could all the way to the finish line and was super exited that I won.

I want to thank my teammates in my race for their help blocking and setting me up for solo break. After the race we stayed later and watched my other teammate Ryan Clarke do the cat 3 race. He did awesome and was off the front for a lot of the time. He also won the most aggressive rider award. I had fun staying to watch him and hope to come back and have more fun next year.

-Gianni

 

Luke Lamperti

Age 13 Juniors 13-14

 

2nd Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14

 

The morning of Land Park Crit I was super exited to go and hopefully do good. When we got there we went to registration and got signed up then we got our kits on and started warming up. At the start I was ready to attack right away but my cleat was not in fast enough so my teammate Isaiah ended up attacking for me. Right when Isaiah got caught Gianni countered and ended up sticking it. But behind that Grover was pulling the pack a lot with Jack. We had a group of about 7-9 the whole race until a couple of people got dropped with 2 laps to go. When we had two laps to go I was for sure my teammate Gianni was going to last off the front. That is the lap that I made an attack to try to stay off the front but then I knew I was going to get caught so I just sat in the field waiting for the sprint. Just after we went through the chicane there was a mini attack and I jumped on that and countered to go for second place which I got after the sprint. I would like thank Coach Laura for all the help and support of Team Swift.

-Luke

 

Isaiah Chass

3rd Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14

 

I was very excited for the Land Park Criterium. After I woke up, I had some breakfast, got my gear together, and got on the road to Sacramento. When I arrived at the race, I got my number and had some more food before warming up. After doing very hard intervals to warm up, I made my way to the start with my teammates Gianni and Luke. After doing roll-out I got into the front row of the group and waited for the race to start. Once the whistle blew, I quickly got clipped, and attacked from the line. After another rider in the group bridged the field up to me, my teammate Gianni made an attack and got off the front. Then, I sat up a little and waited for someone to jump on his wheel. Another rider started chasing Gianni on the other side of me, but he didn’t make it. Then, I sat in on the group and waited for another attack. A few attacks were made but quickly pulled back. The race had only a few laps to go and Gianni was still off the front. I moved my way up to get in a good position for the sprint and sat in until the last few corners. Then, right before the last corner, Luke came back to me and I told him to jump in, in front of me. I got right on his wheel, and got ready, when we came around the final corner, Luke jumped hard and got off the front. I was right on his wheel and we were sprinting to the finish. I quickly glanced to the side and saw no one. As we were coming up to the finish I knew we had 2 and 3. I was very happy knowing that my teammate Gianni, got 1st, and Team Swift got 1,2,3. Overall, this was a fun race and I was happy with how it went.

-Isaiah

 

 

Esteban Ramirez

Age 14 Juniors 13-14

 

10th Place Land Park Criterium Juniors 13-14

 

My first race was this past Saturday in Sacramento and I did learn a great deal at the races such as the “rollout” and how it all starts. The first thing I must say is how difficult the race was, I mean, I knew it was going to be hard, but I did not think 30 minutes were that long! I was totally burnt after the race and that woke me up on how crazy these things can be. So what I’m doing now is really get training and trying to go out on rides more often especially in this warming trend. I did not really enjoy the rollout because there were too many people in a confined area but I’ll soon get over that and I’ve got to build my muscles harder in order to get over the lactic acid building. Overall, I had a really great time over there but I still need improvement in a lot of areas and I’ll make sure I can get better and better with each race and ride.

-Esteban

 

Tomas Saldana-Mitre

15 years old, Cat 5

37th Place Land Park Criterium Senior Category 5

 

Although my result wasn’t great, I did enjoy trying a solo breakaway with 4 laps to go. I was able to distance myself from the pack for one lap but due to the constant catching up I was doing earlier in the race, I was caught and then dropped off the back of the pack. It was overall a great learning experience considering it was just my third crit and 5th race ever.

-Tomas

 

Isabella Brunner

1st Place Land Park Criterium Junior W. 10-12

 

My age bracket was started after, yet interspersed with the 13-15yr olds. At the onset into the first turn, I stayed with the three strongest boys in my group. I knew the course well because I raced here in the January Cal Aggie race. On the final lap, I made a jump and broke away from the boys for the win (in my age bracket).

-Isabella

 

_________________________________________________________________

2. Bariani Road Race 3/16/14 Zamora

 

Emily Abraham

5th place Bariani Road Race Senior Wm Category 4

 

My decision to sign up for this race was sort of last minute. The Bariani road race was Sunday, the day after the Landpark criterium. So my weekend ended up being somewhat like a stage race, minus the time trial.

This race was a little weird for me, my start time wasn’t until 2:30 in the afternoon which is very rare for a road race start. Also the race was only 23 miles long, so it was by far one of the shortest road races I’ve ever done. I was definitely happy that my start time was later, it just made for a rather lazy morning, which probably wasn’t a good thing. When we arrived at registration, it was hot out and I was feeling rather sluggish. I got myself moving and thirty minutes before my start, I did some spinning out on the road. Then I rolled over to the start line. My field was huge, fifty-six women at the start line-by far the most women I’ve ever raced against. As the race began, I was placed towards the center of the pack. With such a huge field, I found myself struggling to find where would be a good place. I didn’t want to be all the way up in the front and waste my energy but I didn’t want to be too far back and miss any attacks. I tried to move up a few places but it was difficult at first since the race hadn’t gotten organized yet. After about ten minutes into the race, the pace started to pick up. The field was beginning to get strung out due to a few right and left hand turns, this is when I found out I had placed myself in a horrible position. I started to watch the field get away from me. I wasn’t at the back, a lot of women had already been dropped, but I was at the point where I had to give it my all to catch back up. Two women on Team Fremont came up beside me, I grabbed their wheel and hoped that they would help me to catch the main pack. Sure enough we did make in back into the front pack. I made sure to move up more into the center that way I wouldn’t get shot off the back again. The wind was horrible; cross-winds, tail-winds, and head-winds. I couldn’t believe the pace we were going considering all the wind, but I hung on as best I could.

Unfortunately, I was still feeling a bit sluggish. I really had no motivation to push myself or go hard, I should have had motivation since I could have scored some major upgrade points if I had won. Anyways, I forced myself to stick with the pack although I was feeling far from 100%. On our second lap, which was also the final lap, I made sure not to be in the back during the section with the turns that way I wouldn’t get gapped off. As we continued to approach the finish, I was thinking to myself, “It’s okay everyone has off days, if I don’t place well it doesn’t matter.” I’m not sure why I had such this negative mentality but when it came down to less than two miles to the finish, the adrenalin started flowing and I finally realized that I was in a race! I began moving up a few places so I could be in a good position for the sprint. When we made the last right turn which told us one km to go, the peloton was strung across the whole road because everyone wanted a good position to sprint. I lost my good position and ended up getting boxed in. I was freaking out, trying to find a quick way around so I could start sprinting. Then I saw a woman from Team Fremont start her sprint, I was too far back and immediately thought she was going to win it. But only a few women sprinted after her and I realized this was because she sprinted early, I guess she assumed the finish line was there when really it wasn’t. I found a way out and began my sprint. There was another women sprinting right next to me and we were battling it out for first and second, but then since the finish was on a small roller we were caught by some of the other women. I finished in an unbelievable fifth place. At the start of this race, I didn’t expect myself to even finish in the top ten. I felt horrible throughout the majority of the race but once I over came that it ended up being great.

-Emily

 

Ben Cook

15, cat 3

4th Place Bariani Road Race Senior Category 3

 

Bariani would be my first ever race with the 3′s, and I knew it would be a good one. The course was perfectly flat, with a few rollers on the back side. This was good for me, as I may be a climber, but I can time trial well in the flats, and this ended up aiding me later in the day.

We had a full 70 miles and 5 laps of the course to race. With how flat it was, I knew it would be less than 3 hours. So a pretty short one, but the wind was picking up some. I knew this would have a factor in the end.

I got to the race an hour early, pinned on my number, and was out spinning in 15 minutes since arriving. It was an early day, and the sun was only just coming up. I look off down the road to find a puffy jacket and a pair of Limitless Cycling shorts spinning down the road. Oh Garrett. I pulled up alongside my friend, who would be racing the 3′s with me. He and I were 2 of 3 juniors in the field of 50 today.

“Like the jacket, Garrett.”

“It’s all about the puffy collar, man.” Garrett says back with a smile. We start chatting about how we’ve been, and about today’s race. He told me that in most 3′s road races, the break usually goes in the first 2-3 miles, and will either stay to win, get caught mid way through, when another move will go and most likely win, or it will get caught right at the end and the day will end in a field sprint. With some valuable information from a well experienced racer, I lined up in the staging area feeling confident. Due to the fact that I’ve had issues getting in the right moves in prior races, I figured that just getting in a break would be a successful day, regardless of my end result. This was something I needed to know how to do.

We rolled out for a neutral start, and then made the left hander down the hill onto the course. Riders started to assemble themselves all over the road, and not even 500 meters into the race, Garrett made a move. I was still moving up, and decided this was nothing to be concerned about. If any other riders chased, I would follow. And sure enough, a rider countered. Flying around Garrett, he took off down the road. Another rider came around my left. Time to go. I jumped and sprinted around the 7-8 riders ahead of me, and flew down the road. I quickly to bridged up, when one more rider joined us. I looked around. That makes four. Not even a mile into the race, and we had a small group away!

We took smooth pulls, and were working hard to get away. I never once looked back to see how far the field was, we had to make this one stick. And sure enough, the motor ref pulled up along our side. “45 seconds! 4, 5!” He shouted at us. I looked back across the overpass and could see the field a good distance away from us. I had done it! I made the break! “That was simple enough!” I thought to myself. “Looks like I really did learn from all those other races. Awesome!” I was thrilled, but the day was only starting. We were cranking right along, and soon enough, one of the riders in our group was wearing down. We told him to hang in, but he had been sick prior to coming out today, and was done. That makes three. Rolling through for the second lap, we had a minute and 15 second lead on the field. The 3 of us kept it smooth, and I decided to grab a Clif bar to munch on as we came through the back of the course. Once we hit the rolling hills, another rider had had enough. He was a strong guy, but enough must have been enough. We said thank you, and I took off down the road.

That makes two. I looked at my breakmate, a Squadra SF rider, who looked to be a climber as well. This is when a good time trial comes in handy. We looked at each other in desperation, and in a little bit of fear as well. I found out later in the day that his name was Scott. So Scott gave me a look and said “I’ve got teammates in the field, they should block for us. We’ve got a 2 minute lead, so let’s keep it at a pace we can hold, and cross our fingers.” I nodded my head in approval and gave a thank you. This guy knew what he was doing, and didn’t seem like he was going to give out on me. We came through for the 3rd lap. I denied a bottle from the field, when Scott dropped his. I reached over to give him mine, so he took a few sips and returned it. I still had another one, anyways. We came down the hill and I spun out on junior gears, so he took the pull for me. About 15 minutes of hard and painful rotations later, the motor ref came along side us. “2 minutes on the field! 4 chasers at a minute away! 4 chasers!” We sighed in relief, but kept up the pace. I looked over the overpass and saw 4 riders coming at us fast, but still about 45 seconds behind.

Scott and I pulled hard through the flats, and finally, I heard the humming of drive trains, and felt a smooth breeze push along my back as four, tall, thick, and aero-dressed riders came along side. Saviors! These guys had it down. “30 second pulls! Flick your elbow when your done! Take a break in the back for now. We’re here to help.” Dang. Great!

That makes 6. I rested towards the rear with Scott, and soon got in rotation, but he was looking tired, and had a few more turns on the tail end of the group. We carried this on for over a lap, and were now on the 4th lap. The motor ref was soon to pull along side. “2:30 from the field! 3 chasers! 3 chasers at 1:15!” He shouted into the wind. Oh boy, we can’t let this group get too big. At this point we were just passed the feed zone, and I looked across the overpass once again, to find Garrett Marking sitting in between two riders. Here we go. I knew that Garrett wouldn’t just let us slide, this was his race. We kept a smooth rotation, but our chasers were gaining fast. Before I knew it, we had been caught. Garrett met my wheel. That makes 9.

“Oh Garrett, the early break never stays!” I teased. “OOOWWW! That hurt SO bad!”

“Well… Have a seat and relax!” So we came through to rotate, and we were soon picking up the pace after the moto told us that the field was splitting up, and we had more groups coming our way. I came through to take my pull, when Garrett came around my left. I had been out in the wind all day, and Garrett gave me a break. Man, he’s looking strong today. In the back of my mind I knew that Garrett was the best rider out here today.

We carried our rotation into the hills, and then Garrett went to the front and soon sat up. Cat and mouse had begun. We only had a few miles until the finish, but there was a chase group 20 seconds off of us. “No game until the final turn! Don’t get us all knocked out of top 10!” I heard. I think this got us into shape, because everybody, Garrett included, began rotating in a double pace line. This went all the way through the final turn at 2k to go, and it began to fall apart just after the 2k sign. I was towards the front, and was not going to mess up another sprint due to positioning. Hitting 1k, we were back in double pace line, as the group was just on our tail. I let myself drift towards the back, as we were still 700-800 meters out, and I knew this was ok. We neared 200 meters, the move went. I was soon to jump right on, and Garrett came flying around my left. I gave my all to get to the line. A rider on my left, and a rider on my right. I looked ahead and saw Garrett throw his fist to the air in victory, but my race wasn’t over yet. I gave it one last push and threw my bike across the line, but a pedal stroke too early! The rider to my left got me at the line, but I beat the rider on my right. I counted the riders ahead of me. 1,2,3. I got 4th! I let out a cheer once I realized that I placed, and heard a familiar voice from behind me. “Killer, Swift!” Scott said. “That was insane! Put it here. Thanks for sticking in there with me.” We shook hands on a great race, and came in joking about how much pain we just put ourselves through for the last 3 hours. I stopped by Garrett and gave him a huge congratulations.

In the end I had an absolutely amazing race at Bariani, and finally got to put everything I learned from the last few months of racing to the test. I got in a winning break and I ended up placing! So that’s always a plus! I came back to the parking lot and ate lunch with some friends I made out on the bike today, as I waited for results. Yup! 4th! I did podium and headed on home. It had been a great day!

-Ben Cook

 

Brad Butterfield

2nd Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18

 

I was really looking forward to the Bariani Road Race and it turned out pretty good. My race started very late in the day at 2:40. The race started with a neutral roll out for about a mile…here is mistake number one-The guy in front of me started sprinting, I followed but he slammed on his breaks a second later nearly taking me and everyone behind out. Not the best start to the race. The first 10 miles different guys attacked off the front. I ended up going with most of them only to have them sit up once I caught up. Apparently they all wanted a solo breakaway. Towards the end of the first lap a Robert Terra attacked into a headwind. Judging by his previous attack, this guy was strong. I went full gas to catch him. We worked together for a about a half mile until 2 other guys caught us, one of which was his teammates. For the next 5 miles the four of us took pulls and eventually getting the gap up to 1:45. With only about 4 miles left we had a big enough gap to where we could ease up the pace. As we turned onto the finishing straight Terra attacked. The 3 of us got onto his wheel and then his teammate attacked. He had a bit of a gap at first but couldn’t hold it. The final move came from Terra again. His teammate must have completely blew up at this point because as I looked back I could barely see him. Neither Zach or I could match his exceleration. With only 500 meters to go I was behind Zach. Here is mistake #2- I should have started my sprint earlier because although I was on my limit, so was he. Ultimately he beat me in the sprint. “Officially” I got 2nd place because Robert is a Cat 3. It was a great race and it was very fun to race alongside my teammates Luke, Gianni, Mile, Emmet, and Jonathan.

-Brad

 

Miles Daly

16 yrs old, Cat 4

21st Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18

 

I was very excited about this race since it was late in the day and I was feeling really good. The race started off fast and I followed wheels for a bit, until the first loose gravel turns. I attacked and got a little gap but I found the field coming up behind me. Then the next attack went, when I responded I had a mechanical that caused me to pull out. I rode the remainder of the 18 miles solo so I could finish the race. I was happy to hear my teammates did very well.

 

Jonathan Gunning

18 years old, Cat 4

 

DNF Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18

 

The day started well and I arrived at the start of the race with plenty of time to warm up. I had been riding quite a bit in the previous weeks and was finally starting to get into shape. I spun around on the roads near registration for about thirty minutes until I was nice and ready. The race started well and we had about five Swift guys in the race. There were a few small attacks in the first few miles that dropped a couple people, but no one broke away. After that, the pace stayed pretty high and a small pace line began to form. Throughout the race I was carefully watching the Limitless team and also Charles (who rides with Breakaway Racing), to make sure that I didn’t miss a break if one occurred. By Charles’ body’s language it appeared that he was a little tired out and not feeling too well, but I still tried to stay alert, seeing that he broke away, and stayed away to win at Snelling. Then as we went into a right turn about nine miles into the thirty mile race, I was cut off by a rider and down I went. He was taking a totally different line through the turn and dove through the apex early, and took out my front wheel with his rear. Fortunately, no one else went down in the crash and the rest of the team placed well, including a second place finish for Brad. No broken bones or serious injury, just some road rash for me. It is healing nicely, but taking a while… Next time I will be more careful of the “sketchy riders” and maybe a little more assertive of pack movements. For now I’m just focusing on healing, and then riding a lot more!

-Jonathan

 

Gianni Lamperti

7th Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18

 

It was a neutral start to the overpass. After the overpass somebody from Limitless cycling attacked and only stayed out for about 10 seconds. It was super windy and people with deep wheels were getting blown around. Coming into one of the corners I heard a crash behind me. When we came out of the corner I looked behind me and saw it was my teammate Jonathan. About 5 minutes later I heard another crash behind me and was told a few minutes later it was Grover. There were a few more hard attacks that split the field up. After that there were about 10 or 15 of us. Then a Limetless attacked again and I missed three people that bridged. Then there were 8 of us in a group trying to catch the break. Once we went over the overpass to start the second lap my teammate Miles had a mechanical. Then it was just 7 of us in the group. After that everybody was just attacking. Then about 5km out from the finish I attacked and was only out for about 45 seconds, then they caught me. I jumped back on and rested till about 200m out. It was a very long sprint but it was also super fun. I am super exited for next year and think this is a great race.

-Gianni

 

Luke Lamperti

11 years old

8th Place Bariani Road Race Juniors 15-18

 

The morning of Bariani Road Race I got up and ate a good breakfast and drove to the race. When we got to the race we went to reg and got our kits on. Just after that we went to warm up, do roll out and get lined up. When the race started we went down a little. At the bottom there was a little attack by Limitless rider. Everybody jumped on it. For the rest of the lap there was a bunch of little attacks until there was a big attack and I had my teammate Brad on the Robert’s wheel so I did not chase. There was then a group of four up the road going into the second lap. Just as we went into the second lap there was a little attack. I was on a teammate’s wheel and just as he had a mechanical problem I went around him to jump on but asking if he was ok. The group of four was still up the road our group did a bunch of little attacks until the sprint came. I had a wheel picked out going into the sprint but getting chopped off I got 4th in the field sprint. I am very happy with a super fun day of racing.

-Luke

___________________________________________________________________

 

3. San Dimas Stage Race 3/28-30/14 San Dimas

 

Ryan Clarke

18, Category 3

6th Place San Dimas SR, Crit Juniors 17-18

10th Place San Dimas SR, TT Juniors 17-18

14th Place San Dimas SR, GC Juniors 17-18

25th Place San Dimas SR, RR Juniors 17-18

 

Stage 1: Time Trial

I’ve come to San Dimas ever since my first season of racing so I know the TT course quite well. I finally got my time trial warm-up nailed and I’ve learned how to gauge my effort well so I was excited to see how I did this year. I was feeling confident after my 13th Place at the Valley of the Sun TT which had a very competitive field. I’m no mountain billy goat but time trials are time trials so I was feeling good. My warm-up was great and I started explosively. I held back just a tad on the lower part of the course to make sure I didn’t go too hard too early. I got my heart rate to 183 which was my average at Valley of the Sun and at about the halfway mark I realized I could go a bit harder so I pushed the pace a bit more and finished well.

 

Stage 2: Road Race

This year’s road race was nice and sunny. The course doesn’t suit me too well because of an extremely punchy hill right before the finish so I knew positioning before would be critical. The race started off fast and I was feeling pretty comfortable. Attacks came from the MRI guys and some lasted longer than others but they all came back. I went for a hot spot sprint and to my surprise I was almost able to hold everyone off even from 300m. I ended up second for points. There had been a good size earthquake the night before and the officials had to take a lap out because emergency crews were going to check a dam which the course went over. The last time over the hill I lost contact with the main group just at the top but I kept going hard to the line to keep from losing a bunch of time.

 

Stage 3: Criterium

I was thinking about going for the hot spot points jersey today but since I didn’t contest the second sprint or the finish yesterday I would have to win the race and come in second in the sprint halfway. Instead I decided to ride wheels during the halfway sprint to observe how the finish would be. I rode the race smart. I let the right people chase and always stayed within the top 15 riders. I was in the top 5 with 3 and 2 to go. On the last lap in the second and third corners a massive rush of people flew up and came in on the inside of the corner which almost caused me to crash. On the downhill I moved up a few more spots and just before the last corner, the guys on either side of me both bumped me and I was forced to dab my brakes. That left a small gap between me and the top 5 or so and because the finish is so fast (and junior gears) I couldn’t make up enough ground before the line. I barely missed out on a podium but I had a ton of fun racing and I was extremely satisfied by being up near the front and riding the race smart. Although I’m bummed this was my last time racing San Dimas as a junior, I was happy to see a bunch of improvement from previous years. Thank you Coach Laura and my dad as well as my teammates Ben and Jonathan for making this a fun and memorable trip.

-Ryan

 

Ben Cook

15, Category 3

 

10th Place San Dimas Stage Race, TT Juniors 15-16

9th Place San Dimas Stage Race, RR Juniors 15-16

8th Place San Dimas Stage Race, Crit Juniors 15-16

9th Place San Dimas Stage Race, GC Juniors 15-16

 

The San Dimas time trial is just over 4 miles, and climbs almost 1400 feet. So? Well, this is great for me, as I just can’t get enough of hills. I live right at the foot of a 3000 foot mountain, and love to climb. I knew that this would be a huge benefit to me, and I came into the race ready to kill it.

The team and I got a good pre-ride in the day before, and I knew what I had ahead of me. I spun to the course with my teammates, Ryan and Jonathan. There, we met Coach Laura with the van. We set up trainers in the shade (or lack of it), and hung out around the van before warming up. I was up first up of the 3 of us. Start time: 1:03:30. After lots of time to kill with the team, I jumped on the trainer. Today’s warm up? 15 minutes z1, 10 minutes zone 3, 1×2 minute pyramid, and a 1×1 minute pyramid. I always loved these (not really). So I rolled up my skinsuit, threw on my Clif hat and an open jersey to block the sun, and got right down to business.

Jonathan was a new rider on the team, in his first stage race. He was just starting to spin as I was finishing up my pyramids. He asked how a time trial warm up feels. “TT warmups are the hardest thing you’ll ever do.” I said. He gave me a smile.

“Besides a time trial.” I added. I could tell that he and I were both excited for the tough day ahead.

After finishing my warm-up, I hopped off the trainer, filled up my tires, put on my helmet, glasses, and skinsuit, and headed over to the starting area to use the restroom one last time and spin around. After rolling out, I stayed under the starting tent. 5 riders to go. 4,3,2, oh boy. I was called to start. There was no start ramp, and believe it or not, I’ve never started without one! So this would be new for me. The timer started beeping, and before I knew it I was off. Not the fastest start in the world, but within 100 meters I was settled in comfortably.

The course instantly picked up, and soon enough I was in the little chainring. I may have been slightly cross chained, but it was better than missing a shift on the steep sections. I switched from the drops to the hoods and began climbing as the road hit 8% grade. Around the first corner, I remember hearing about how this section is slightly steeper, and a lot of riders blow up right here. So as coach said, I gave it 98%, rather than 100. I took it up the steep section at a good pace, and settled in and gradually began ramping my heart rate up. 189 bpm. Woah. It was pretty hot out, and I was feeling pretty good, but that’s high. I was 2 miles into the course, so I decided to keep up the pace, as I couldn’t have more than another 10 minutes. Soon enough, I felt a cramp in my stomach bugging me. It really had no effect, but it was annoying. So I pushed on. “UP UP UP! GET IT BEN!” I heard from my friend Matteo on the side of the road. Matteo would be racing with me that weekend, so it was good to hear some friendly encouragement. I was just passing 2K to go, and I was hovering around 192-193 bpm. Pretty high. The road flattened out the slightest bit, and I shifted into the big chainring and got out of the saddle. I began to push as hard as I could, and I was feeling good. Feeling good doesn’t mean that I wasn’t in serious pain, but I felt good. 1K to go. I held the big ring, and kept on top of the gear. Where in the world is the finish? I looked at my Garmin. 4.1 miles in. Time to really go. I got out of the saddle one last time and began my sprint. I couldn’t see the finish, but I knew it was only a few seconds away. I saw the line about 100 meters away. I had timed my sprint pretty well! So I kept up my sprint and gave it everything I had. I sprinted over the line and nearly fell off the bike. I had given it everything. I was happy.

I chatted at the top of the mountain for a while with a few other riders before heading down. I stopped at a few corners to watch some riders head up and look for my teammates. I saw Jonathan coming up the mountain, so I yelled and gave him a cheer. For his first time trial, he was looking great! I was happy that he could be out here with us. I headed down a few more corners, and saw my other teammate, Ryan, coming up. He was looking good as well, and I could tell he was giving it his all. I headed down the rest of the descent, and met up with Coach Laura. She gave me a wave, and asked how it went. I told her that I gave it my all, and that I was happy in the end. So we waited at the van for Ryan and Jonathan to come back, and spun on home.

I ended up 10th, with a time of 18:22. A time I was happy with for being a younger rider in my category, and being new to the race. Both Jonathan and Ryan placed well too, so we spun on home and ended off a great day.

 

Stage 2: Road Race

San Dimas was only my second stage race, and since I was in the younger end of my age group, this year was all about learning. Yesterday’s time trial was not my best, but I was feeling good about today, and was glad that we raced with the 17-18′s, to make a bigger field.

After warming up, I lined up at the start with my teammates, Ryan and Jonathan. During last night’s team meeting, Coach Laura had told us that today was the day to go for a stage win, since none of us had placed in the TT. So I lined up at the front of the race feeling pretty good. The start was neutral, which I liked. So the whistle blew, and we were off. 200 meters. I was in the front row still, but there was clearly a fight for wheels going on behind me. 100 meters. Before I knew it, we were crossing the start line. The race took off immediately. I found myself a wheel not too far down the pack, and sat in as we rounded the first corner. Brakes squealed and riders yelled. That’s a tight one. A few attacks went down the road, but I knew they would be right back. There was a slight crosswind, and Team Specialized and Monster Media were up at the front. We came to round the next corner. Still sitting about 15th-20th wheel, I felt pretty comfortable. I began to head left, but almost took a few cones with me. “Please tell me that’s the worst corner!” A rider joked behind me. But I wasn’t joking, that’s a rough one! The cones were close, the road was torn up, and it was a real tight turn. We all exited at way too big of a gear.

The rest of the race went on very similar to this; dangerously. The course was narrow, and if you weren’t focused on the road for one second, you could very easily go down. The one open section was on the hill, but that wasn’t really all that peaceful either. Once we got to the hill for the first time, I soon began to move up, and shifted into the little chainring early. The climb only got steeper and faster. Riders at the front drove the pace high. I began to feel something blocking my lungs, and started coughing. It was becoming a struggle to breath, and I had to clear whatever was stuck soon. I managed my way over the hill, and caught right on with the lead group. So I tried beating my chest open up my lungs. It seemed to work! So now that I could actually breathe right, I was back in the race. The only problem was, this happened lap after lap, and only on the hill, when my heart rate got up. Eventually, I ended up throwing up on the back side of the course. But not too badly, and I stayed on the bike. After that, everything was better! So far this race has been: dangerous, fun, and now gross. What else can we add? Well, why not painful?

I was sitting about 10th wheel on the finishing straight, coming in for 3 laps to go. I saw two riders up the road working together, and decided to join them. I launched myself off the front and caught them. The 3 of us began to work together as hard as we could. We knew it would be tough to get away here. We were right. 500 meters later, I felt a rush of air come up from behind me, and the field came around us. I dug deep and caught back on. “Ben! Don’t ever bridge a gap on your own! Somebody else WILL chase!” I heard my teammate Ryan shout into the wind. I took this into mind, and went back into the field.

The rest of the race carried on like this. No move made it away, and we just kept a fast pace especially over the hill. Me being a climber, I had the advantage here. The hill may have been short, but I am light enough to still make it over the top. However, my main issue was positioning. I would always drop back in the tight corners and rough sections before the climb. Once I actually got to the base of the climb, I would have to work hard just to stay with the leaders. So over every climb I just made it onto the tail end of the group.

Coming in for the last lap, I was stuck too far back again. I gave it my all and ended up right with the leaders. Down the decent, I moved up a few more places, and ended up right with the front group, ready for the finish. I was stuck out in the wind, however, so I tried to move into the pack. “Stop man! What are you doing! Stop moving in!” I heard as I began to take a rider’s wheel. I guess somebody doesn’t want their wheel taken! I began to try to move in again, but the rider bumped me on the hip, keeping me off. I was going to need to find a wheel soon, as we were only 1k out, and there was a pile of hay and a traffic island approaching fast. I began scrambling to find a wheel. “Head in, I’ve got you. I’m not in the mood to see a rider hit the deck today.” Another rider behind gave his wheel for me. Not the best place, but at least I was safe. This was one of my main problems in today’s finish; I was stuck out in the wind for too long. This ties into what I learned at the end of the day, I need to be more aggressive when I ride. This would have helped with positioning for the climb, and finding a wheel for the finish. We sprinted in across the line, and I made up a few places.

In the end, I was happy to have finished with the lead group of such a large race, and I learned a lot. I had a fun and interesting race, and was feeling good about tomorrow’s criterium.

 

Stage 3: Criterium

After having a fun road race, I was feeling good for today’s criterium, and ready to end off San Dimas Stage Race well. Crits are always fun for me, and I was assuming that today would be no different. I got to warm-up on course, since we were the first race of the day. After warming up, I lined up in staging. Coach Laura came over, and told me just to have a fun race. There was no pressure today, and just to go race well. That instantly made me feel better about the day.

The course was a fun one, and my legs were feeling good. The whistle blew, and we were off. I ended up on third wheel. A bit farther up than I would have liked. Soon enough, riders came around all sides of me. I latched onto one and carried off up the hill. A few laps in, I saw a group of 3 beginning to work together up the road. We came around the corner into the finishing straight, and I launched myself after them. Before I knew it, the field was right on my wheel. Dang it! I should have been more patient, and waited for another rider to chase. I sat back in the field.

The rest of the race went the same way. A lot of attacks, but none stayed. I saw my teammate Ryan moving up the road with 2 other riders. It was pretty cool to see him off the front! Within a few laps, they were back. With 3 to go, I began to move up some through the field. On the hill with 2 to go, I was about 10th wheel, and feeling good. On the last lap I was about 5th wheel on the hill, and was ready for the finish. But a mass of riders came from my right, and swept by us on the inside. I tried to jump in, but I couldn’t get on a wheel. So I carried down the hill in the upper part of the pack, and ended up having to brake hard, because I was pushed to the outside of the corner. I sprinted in for a pack finish.

I learned in the end of the day that I needed to be more aggressive, and fight more for wheels and positions. I did have lots of fun though, and my teammate Ryan ended up 6th in the 17-18′s! So I had a fun race, and came out of San Dimas with 9th place in GC. Overall, San Dimas was a great experience, and I’m happy with the way it turned out.

-Ben

__________________________________________________________________

 

4. Madera Stage Race 3/1-2/14 Madera

 

Emily Abraham

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, Criterium Senior Wm Category 4

20th Place Madera Stage Race, TT Senior Wm Category 4

5th Place Madera Stage Race, Road Race Senior Wm Category 4

 

Stage 1: Madera Criterium

Although I didn’t place very well at the Madera stage race last year, I’m happy I did it because it definitely benefited me this year. Since I already knew the courses I felt that much more prepared. For the women’s category 4, the criterium was on Saturday morning and the time trial was on Saturday afternoon. I prefer criteriums over time trials so I was happy with the schedule. I arrived at the crit course an hour and a half before my start with plenty of time to get changed and begin warming-up. After spinning on the trainer for a bit, I was feeling pretty good. My legs weren’t too tight and I had confidence that I could do well in this race. I pushed through my painful pyramids, telling myself I would feel better during the race, then headed over to the start. When the race started, I was towards the back. I immediately knew that wasn’t where I wanted to be, so I found my way up to the front. I positioned myself well and made sure to stay alert during the entire race. I also focused on only taking a few short pulls that way I would save my energy. During one of the laps, as I sat about fourth wheel from the front, I heard two women (both on different teams) planning something. It sounded like one of the was going to make an attack so I made sure to keep my wheel right on the one who was going to make an attack. Sure enough, as we passed the finish line the next time, she began sprinting and I followed. However we didn’t make a break from the group. On the next lap she did it again and I followed again. The rest of the race was mellow, no huge attacks. Then on the final lap, I again made sure to position myself well. I was in second just behind the woman who was pulling the entire pack. As we came around the second to last turn, I felt myself getting anxious and excited, thinking “I could actually win this.” Then the final turn came and everyone began coming around me to start their sprint. I stood up for my sprint and gave it all I had to the line and got 3rd.

 

Stage 2: Madera Time Trial

The time trial course is just a short ten-mile loop with three turns. Time trials aren’t one of my strong points but I was still hoping to do somewhat well in order to keep a good place in the GC. After my warm-up on the trainer, my legs were feeling pretty good. I had some time before my start so I rode around on the road before. I arrived at the start line just two minutes before which wasn’t enough time. I was the first rider to go off in my category so the official kind of rushed me to get started. There wasn’t a ramp at this time trial which threw me off a bit since the last three time trials I’ve done there has been a ramp. I struggled to push off when the official said go so that probably lost me a few seconds. There was a rough head wind on the way out, I pushed through but wow my legs were killing me. I wish I would have pushed harder in the beginning then more towards the end, since the tail wind came just before the finish. When I was about ten meters or so from the finish, a huge bee stung me on the left knee. It was so painful and I screamed in agony, but I made it across the finish. At that point I didn’t care what my finish time was, I just wanted my leg to feel better.

 

Stage 3: Madera Road Race

I woke up on Sunday morning with a swollen leg from the bee sting. It hurt a little to walk on it but once I got on my bike it felt fine. I warmed-up out on the road for a good thirty minutes before my start. The women’s Cat 4 race was fifty-two miles, for a total of three laps around the course. It’s a neutral roll out from the start and the race doesn’t actually begin until about two or three miles from where we start. I was at the front of the pack during the neutral section, but then when we started the race I realized I didn’t want to be pulling. So I moved back a few places in the pack. The entire first lap was pretty slow. No one wanted to pull so we were going along at about sixteen miles per hour. I tried to get a rotating pace line going but it seemed like no one understood what was going on. That was frustrating but I decided if they wanted to go that slow and not treat it like a race, then fine that’s what we would do. Finally once we made the first right hand turn on the first lap, someone made an attack and we increased our speed. But then once the extremely rough patch of road came, we all took it at a good pace. I was happy about that because no one crashed or got a flat; except our mentor who got a flat. After the horrible portion of road, there’s about four rollers then an uphill finish. On the first time around, I went way too hard on the rollers which tired out my legs a lot. The second lap was a lot like the first, no one wanting to pull then we get to that right hand turn and increase our speed. I could feel my legs screaming on the second time on the uphill, but I pushed through and managed to stay with the pack. On the third lap, a woman broke away. The women didn’t even do anything about it; no one wanted to pull so no one went after her. I moved my way up to the front and began pulling and kept a steady pace instead of going all out to catch her. When I began to get tired, I pulled off the front and the person behind me started pulling. Finally! I got a rotating pace line going. We were starting to close the gap on the woman who broke away, but then we got to a slight downhill and the woman, who was in front pulling started coasting! I scream, “Keep pedaling!” Then other women also start screaming, “Keep pedaling!” But now the gap is back to where it was before and the woman is starting to get further away. One of the women beside me attacks and I follow. We go all out and in no time we manage to catch the woman who made a break. Unfortunately the whole pack had grabbed my wheel so we were all back together again. We came to the rough section of road, but everyone took it pretty easy in order to save their energy for the rollers before the finish. As we came upon the first roller, my legs were killing me. I pushed over it and stayed with the front pack. Some women started to drop off the back as we continued over the next few. When we came to that last uphill to the finish, I didn’t think I could stay with the other few women, but I pushed and pushed and amazingly ended up in fifth place.

-Emily

 

Ryan Clarke

15th Place Madera Stage Race, TT Senior Category 3

11th Place Madera Stage Race, Crit Senior Category 3

 

Stage 1: Time Trial

The Madera time trial is pretty flat but the roads are absolutely horrible. This was my first TT with my time trial bike that I got this winter and I was sure excited to show everyone what I could do. I got in a great warm-up and rolled to the start. When I got there my heart rate monitor stopped working but there were at least 5 other people there with the same one so I didn’t worry too much. I started well and tried to find my heart rate but it wasn’t being picked up and my speed wasn’t showing up. I turned off my computer and back on again with no luck. I tried my best to gauge my effort but at the finish I felt like I could have ridden the course again. I was a little disappointed but even without heart rate I was only a minute down which really surprised me and wasn’t all that bad compared to a lot of the other times. Since the tt and crit are in the same day I wasted no time getting food in me and resting for the crit.

 

Stage 2: Criterium

I felt pretty rested after the tt and I did a few jumps on the road before the race for my warm-up. The race had a lot of attacks and I rode smart and was always near the front to cover them. I often knew when people would attack and when I looked back to check they were just getting out of the saddle so I had a bunch of time to get on their wheel. Nothing serious happened until two to go when a guy went solo and the field slowly brought him back with half a lap to go. I went through the last corner 5th wheel or so but nobody drove the pace. One guy jumped on my right but the field swung really far left and I was caught in the wind. I really didn’t anticipate what happened because everyone was all over the road but 11th wasn’t too bad. I was happy with it and I had a super fun time racing which was the best part of the whole race.

 

Stage 3 Road Race DNF

Despite fiddling around with it in the morning, my heart rate monitor still wasn’t working so I had to start without it. Right off the bat after the neutral start a guy half attacked and I followed his wheel and the field just let us slide away. A few kilometers later 4 guys bridged to us and we started driving the pace hard. We were all working well together and right before the end of the first lap my chain and rear derailleur self destructed beyond repair putting me out of the race. I was super bummed because our break had 3:30 on the field and I was only a minute down in GC plus I was the highest rider on GC there so I was riding myself into first. Despite not being able to finish it was still fun to ride in the break and gain some experience in doing so. Sometimes things don’t go your way but overall I had fun and I was happy with the way I was racing.

-Ryan

 

Tomas Saldana-Mitre

15 years old, Cat 5

 

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, Crit

3rd Place Madera Stage Race, TT

 

Madera was my first stage race so the TT and Road Race were both new. I enjoyed all of it and gained a lot of experience, riding in a pack, drafting, and cornering. Unfortunately I flatted on the first lap of the Road Race and lost too much time to catch my group. It was still a lot of fun and good experience riding alone in a race.

-Tomas

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5. Turlock Lake Road Race 3/29/14 Turlock

 

Emily Abraham

5th place Turlock Lake Road Race Senior Wm Category 4

 

Unfortunately, the San Dimas Stage Race didn’t have category for women Sr 4 or junior women, so I wasn’t able to join some of my teammates for racing this weekend. I still wanted to do a race that Saturday so I went to Turlock to accumulate some points towards my upgrade.

I wasn’t feeling too great during my week of training proceeding this race but when Friday came, my legs were feeling good and I was excited to be racing. I woke up early on Saturday and ate a good breakfast before heading to the race. We arrived with just enough time for me to get my number and spin on the trainer a bit before my start. I had a small mechanical issue when I got off the trainer but we got it worked out just in time for my start.

The race started off pretty slow, it was an easy pace and I was worried that it would be one of those races where nobody wants to pull. But about 5 miles in, on the first roller, an attack was made. The woman didn’t get very far but I made sure to move up in the pack in case another attack was made. We went over a few more rollers then there was a right hand turn. I was second wheel, then the woman pulling started slowing so I went around her and took a (probably too long) pull. As I started to get tired, my friend on Team Fremont, came around me and started pulling. When she started to slow I came around and started pulling her. We kept taking turns for about 4 miles. Then a few women came around us as some more rollers began. At the end of this roller section, with 3k left on the first lap, the pack started to slow. Now we were going along at an easy pace again, which I was actually grateful for because I needed to rest a bit before the final lap. Just before we got to the finish of the first lap, a woman made an attack. No one went after her and I felt like she was going to make a break. So I sped up and tried to catch her and the rest of the women followed me. This happened a lot throughout the second lap, which made the race more exciting and much harder. Especially on the rollers a woman would attack, make a small break, the rest of us would waste our energy to catch her, then it would start over again. On the last section of rollers, my same friend from earlier got on the front and pushed herself over this one steep roller, I followed her. When we began going downhill before the next incline, I looked back and noticed we had a gap on the rest of the pack. I sped up and started pulling my friend. We went hard but unfortunately couldn’t stay away. For the rest of the race, I stayed in the pack so I could prepare for my sprint. When the flat section came with 3k to the finish, I began to get anxious. Whenever the finish of a race is coming, I start to get these voices in my head that are constantly contradicting one another. One’s giving me motivation and the other is telling me that I’ve already worked my legs too hard for a sprint. It’s like this constant battle going on in my mind, it’s quite distracting. So we get closer and closer to the finish and the pace starts to pick up and I try to find myself a good position. Now we’re at less than 1k to go, I moved up in the pack and I braced myself for the small rise that leads up to the finish. The women began their sprint up the small uphill and I got out of the saddle and also started to sprint. I then noticed a crash up ahead on the right side of the road but luckily the spectators were making sure we stayed to the left. The crash distracted me a little and my legs were screaming once I got over the small hill, there were four women right in front of me. I should have stood up and went all out for the sprint, but I didn’t. My legs were toast, but that’s not an excuse. I could of and should of stood up and battled for a better placing. But I didn’t and I can’t complain with a 5th place finish. I’m disappointed in myself but there are many more races to come. It’s a learning process, right?

-Emily

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6. UC Berkeley Criterium 3/16/14 Berkeley

 

Tomas Saldana-Mitre

15 years old, Cat 4/5

16th Place UC Berkeley Criterium Senior Category 4/5

 

I was a new experience for me because the course was very fast and the riders were much more experienced and stronger than I was. The tempo right from the start was high and I had a small right on the start line (I slipped when I clipped in and had to regain my balance by putting my foot down). This put me farther back in the pack where I was surrounded and uncomfortable in the corners.

-Tomas

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7. Grasshopper-Chileno Valley 3/1/14 Occidental

Ben Cook

15, Cat 3

32nd Place Chileno Valley Grasshopper Open

 

Coming into the Grasshopper, I was very excited. I would be riding with teammates and friends, I loved the course, and it would be a true challenge. I got to the start line with my teammates Luke and Gianni. We saw the mass crowd of riders, and decided we didn’t want to be involved in the mess that would happen starting through town. So Luke, Gianni, our parents, and I, decided we would spin up the road until caught, since there was no official start. So we headed up the climb nice and slow, and talked a bunch along the way, and we were soon caught.

I was planning on going pretty hard today, so when I looked back and saw a D3 Devo rider leading the field right behind my shoulder, I jumped up and ended up right on the little gap forming on his wheel. We began a short descent, and we soon came across a split in the road, the rider ahead of me went straight, but I knew that we normally go right when training here. Maybe it’s different? I look back. It’s not. Everybody was going right, I didn’t know what was going to happen to the rider who went straight, but luckily I could break some, and get myself back on course.

“Get the heck out of here kid!” I hear as I see a rider passing with an unfriendly gesture to me. “Wow. I’m 14, and you’re giving who the grief here?” I think to myself. I wasn’t going to say anything back to him. I was pretty shocked, so I just jumped back in line and got settled for the next climb. We hit the next 5 minute climb, and fast too. This one was pretty steep, and we booked right up it. I wasn’t struggling to hang in, but my heartrate was very high. I was feeling really good but had to fight a bit over the top.

“You’ve got this Swift.” I hear from a rider next to me. At that moment, I just shut up all the pain and went for it. So I ended up right towards the front of the group, where I wanted to be. I was going to take it easy on the descent, as this was NOT the time for me to get hurt, and Colman Valley is a long, dangerous way down. As we were coming along the rollers at the top of Colman, I hear a rider come up next to me.

“What’s your name buddy?” I hear from a rider next to me. I look over to see a D3 Devo rider with a warm expression on his face.

“I’m Ben. What about you?”

“Dakota.” So Dakota and I chatted some more about where we come from, our age, all that. Turns out he lives in Pennsylvania, but is staying here in San Francisco through Sea Otter in April. I head down the descent on Dakota’s wheel, and we make the left hander onto Highway 1. Crosswinds. Joy. I had never been in an echelon before, but now was the time to try. I moved to the front, knowing a split was about to happen, and three riders and I started rotating. I pulled off around the front, and looked back to see that we were already away from the field. These things really do work! I checked my heartrate. 189bpm. Higher than I would have hoped, but I was working hard. The 3 of us wouldn’t stick, so we just gave it a good little go and got caught about 10 minutes later. The field came back half its size. At least I played it safe, and didn’t have to deal with fighting in the field during the crosswinds.

I came back to sit in the field, as another small move went. I was enjoying my time in the draft, chatting with a few friends, and having a great time. It was an absolutely beautiful day out. I decided to eat. This carried on for the next 45 minutes or so, when I saw my teammate Brad. We talked some about how we’ve been, what to eat and drink along this ride, so on and so forth. So we carried on like this for another few minutes, until we hit some kickers. Pretty steep, I wanted to move to the front. So I used the climb to get up ahead, and gradually moved up over the various hills. There were a few turns in the course, and at every turn we made a little acceleration. I told Brad to watch out for these, as I didn’t want him to miss the group.

By the time we hit the very next turn, I was right. The field shot off into a crosswind, and I did everything I could to join in. Things were stringing out, and I didn’t think I was going to make the wheel ahead of me, when I felt a hand push me on my back. It was the same rider who cheered me on from before! I don’t know why this guy liked me so much, but I liked him too! So I pulled hard into the wind, and when I pulled off he was right there. 3 other riders and I made our way up to the group. I was the last rider to make it on with lead guys. I looked back to see riders strung out all over the road. Once we got settled down, I looked around to see who was still in the group. I didn’t see Brad anywhere. I was still very happy with how well Brad rode, he’s a new rider and did great today.

We rolled on like this for a little while, when an attack came from a Squadra rider, Dana Williams, my dad’s coach, looked over at me and yelled the ever famous words

“That mans gonna die!!” And took off after him down the road. The rest of the field sat there laughing our heads off, knowing that this wasn’t our move to chase. We carried on down the road, and came up upon the feed zone hill. Wilson hill was about 1.5 miles long at 9/10% grade. I positioned myself towards the front, and this is when I saw Levi Liephiemer get ready to make his move. At this point there was not really anything I could do, and when he jumped, I just hung on for dear life. The field strung out, including myself. So I dug deep to get with a group, and went to grab a bottle at the feed zone. There was only one available, but I was going to need two, so I stopped and picked up another and took off down the hill.

I was trying to get into a small group just ahead of me, but we were at 50+mph, and I was on junior gears. So I just tucked and tried to hang in. There was nothing I could do, and I realized that there was no way I could bridge a 20 second gap at 150rpm. So that was my day!

I sat up and ate, and enjoyed the beautiful views as we came up to Marshall’s wall. Along the climb I was passed by two riders, and I hoped on their wheel. One of them was David Mai, who is a friend of Coach Troy, one of my coaches on Team Swift. We got over the hill and David and I chatted for a bit, and kept up a good little pace. We rode the next 30 miles just us two, after we stopped for water and the other rider in our group went on.

We chatted and had a lot of good talk, and made good friends. Just coming up on the base of Joy road, I heard another familiar voice behind me.

“Long time, no see, Ben!”

“Brad!!” Brad was back on to us! With him were about 10 other riders. But there was no time to chat, the final climb was just about here. 80 miles in, and 26% steep, I took off up the road. One rider chased, and we duked it out up the steep portions of Joy Road. He pulled ahead at one pitch, and just got out of the saddle and hammered. I did everything I could to keep on with him, but it wasn’t enough. So I rode hard until the end, and he ended up getting me by a few seconds.

I rolled into the finish and shared a fist bump with my competitor, and made some small talk with Dakota, who came in a few minutes before me. My dad had taken a shortcut, and met me at the top of Joy. We spun back to the car, very very slowly. It had been a long and painful day, but a great one!

-Ben

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8. NorCal MTB Race #2 3/8/14 Granite Bay

 

Eli Kranefuss

10th Place NorCal Race #2; Granite Bay Grinder Varsity

 

After a strong last race, I was stoked for the second MTB race of the season. Likethe last race, I knew that this race was going to have a fast start. So, like always, I did a warm-up pyramid and was feeling ready to race. As promised, the race had a very fast start. I made the first few breaks and found myself with the lead group. But then, when we hit the most technical section of the trail, the rider in front of me wasn’t able to make it over the rock. At this point, the group shattered, pushing me into no man’s land. I tried to catch the lead group, but was caught by the group behind me. We worked together for the remaining laps, and I was pretty happy with my position. However, on the final lap I realized that I hadn’t eaten anything when I started to bonk. I still had a pretty good race, but I know that I won’t make that mistake again.

Eli

 

Ben Cook

5th Place NorCal Race #2 Freshman

 

Granite Bay would be my first NorCal mountain bike race, as I had missed the first one. I was very excited coming into the race, as I had heard good things about the course, and about mountain bike racing itself. However, I didn’t have a call up, this meant I would be starting at least 25 riders back, and only had a few hundred meters to pass up to the front. Luckily, I’ve had experience with this before.

I did some sprints to warm up on the road, as my 29 inch wheels didn’t work in a trainer, and got to staging 15 minutes early. My coaches and teammates were there to cheer me on (Redwood has lots of energy when it comes to cheering) and help me get to the start. I was already in staging, and was feeling nervous. I ate a Clif shot and took a drink.

They signaled the start before I even knew it, and we were off. Weaving my way through riders, it took just about all of the open stretches of trail to pass riders and get to the front. Being a road racer, I had a lot of strength compared to my competition, but not so much technical ability. Granite Bay was the most technical NorCal race, and it wasn’t even all that bad! After pre-riding, I knew there would be a few tough sections, but nothing I really had to worry about.

I ended up in about 9th place, and I was in a group of 5 riders. Four riders went off the front, and got out of sight. I had just used all of my energy sprinting up, and there were too many riders ahead of me to chase on. Luckily I had two teammates in the group ahead. The beginning of the course was twisty and smooth. The curves made it tricky to put out power though, and I was dying to hang on. NorCal mountain bike racing was a lot different than junior racing on the road! These were very strong riders, and I had no idea how to get out from 9th place. There were no passing sections, but I knew that the hills were coming up. We hit the first little riser, and there were a few lines to take. I went right, and ended up passing a rider! I couldn’t get around anybody else, as I was still trying to recover (at 185+bpm, I might add). So I waited until a steep, rocky climb, that I knew not a lot of riders had the power to make it over and through the rocks. Riders started piling up, and thank goodness I had a good mount and dismount, because I ended up passing 3 riders by running right up! Officials were calling out your place as you rode by. “9th rider!” I was hearing. But after passing riders up the rocky sections it became 8th, 7th, and finally I was the 6th place rider. I saw one rider from Drake High School up ahead of me, and nobody was behind us. (I found out later in the day that his name was Charlie, and he was a friend of my teammate). That was my guy. 5th place was a podium. We came out of the technical sections and got into the open, and I went for it as hard as I could. He couldn’t hang on my wheel, and even though he was a great technical rider, he wasn’t quite as strong as I was. I knew I had the advantage here, but it was going to be a tough race. I was going at a pretty good pace as we came through in the first of two laps. I saw a rider coming up on the left, and sure enough, my competitor had caught me. Side by side, we raced to the single track about 50 meters in front of us. A root section was just ahead, and Charlie pushed to get to the closing singletrack.

We were in the winding smooth sections again, and I found a place to pass in the inside of a corner. I led and Charlie followed, and I just set a fast pace for both of us, but not killing it. Since drafting didn’t have an effect, I could set my own pace, and did this through the sections that I had trouble with.

We passed back a forth for a while, but I started to make some moves on the rocky sections. It was on the climbs that I knew I could get him, and on the final climb, I decided to go for it. I got out of the saddle and gave it my all, and took the right line around him, dug deep over the climb, bombed the descent, and sprinted every straight. I went as I never once looked back, but it was only when I started hearing

“5th place!” “You’ve done it!” “Podium, bud!” That I realized we were almost at the finish, and I had done it. I rolled into the finish right before one of my teammates from the group ahead. I had done it! I got a podium in my first mountain bike race! I spent the rest of the day with my team, cheering on other riders in later races, am having a great time. I was really happy with the end result of the day, and had an awesome time at my first ever mountain bike race!

-Ben Cook

 

Cassidy Mountjoy

2nd Place NorCal MTB Race #1 Sophomore boys D2

 

I had been looking forward to my first Norcal race of my sophomore year for quite some time. I had been preparing for months and wanted to see how I would place in this year’s field. At the start line I was very nervous but I had a race plan; go out in front hard then find a comfortable pace. This meant not to worry about placing, just to race strong. Into the first single track I was following the leader. Later he pulled away as I began to settle into a maintainable speed. The course was smooth and incredibly fun, I had a blast racing on it. In the end I finished second, I was overjoyed because this was my first norcal podium and a top spot also, I was thrilled. The day was a successful one and I came home feeling successful and proud.

-Cassidy

 

Cassidy Mountjoy

3rd Place Norcal MTB #2 Sophomore boys D2

 

Granite bay is one of my favorite courses yet it is one that I’ve had the most trouble with. This was the first norcal race that has been on a Saturday. Coming into the race I was fairly sore, I had done some hard training earlier that week. One day of max effort hill repeats, then a tempo ride the next battling the wind and rain out to Dylan beach. The first half lap I stuck to the leader’s tail, until I was dropped at a rocky technical section. At that point I had lost a quite a bit of my energy. Later in the lap I was passed be the third place and put into third. From there I kept slipping behind until I developed a maintainable pace. I fell back another place but retook it on the last lap. The race was very difficult and beat me up and I put a lot of stress on my body while I was still recovering. I now have experienced the effect of overtraining, the proceeding weeks after the race I felt exhausted and lethargic when I got on the bike. I have learned the importance of rest and moderation through my setback.

 

Eli Kranefuss

7th Place NorCal Race #3; East Garrison Varsity

 

I was looking forward to this race. It was back at Ford Ord, and I liked the course here last time. After my usual pyramid and a few Shot Blocks, I went to the start line. This course had an uphill start, and I saw this as a benefit for me, because I like climbing. As expected, it was a fast start. I found myself with the second group, because I wasn’t able to make the first break. However, they were going a little slower than I liked, so I pushed ahead and pulled away. I then caught up to the lead group at the start of the second lap. However, when I finally caught them, there was an attack and I fell off with one other racer. We worked well together, but we got caught by a few other racers. Then, we sped up and dropped a few of the racers. Going into the final stretch, it was just three of us in 5th, 6th, and 7th place. However, the two other racers dropped me at the end, leaving me with a 7th place finish. Overall, it felt like a strong race. Almost everything came together for me so I was pretty stoked.

Eli

 

Ben Cook

7th Place NorCal #3- Fort Ord Freshman

 

Coming into my second mountain bike race, I was very excited to go out and have a fun time again. The last race went well for me, so I was hoping this would be the same. The course was sandy, loose, and was supposed to be flowy. That type of riding isn’t really my style, so I knew I would have a challenge today.

I did a warm-up on the road, and went to the staging area. In NorCal mountain bike races, they call up the first 30 riders in individual rows, so that the race is safer and everybody starts with riders their level. I missed the first race, and even after placing 5th at the second race in the NorCal series, I still didn’t have a call up. This means that I would be starting about 30 riders down in narrow singletrack, and this would be a struggle to pass riders and get to the front. Besides my start position, I lined up thinking about how to advance. The official signaled the start, and we were off.

The course started off on a sandy, narrow climb, and I soon began to pass riders. We came over the first hill, and I soon heard a familiar voice behind me.

“Alright Ben, go get em!” It was my friend Charlie, who races for the Drake High School team. At the last race, Charlie and I competed for the final spot on the podium, but this race I was feeling stronger. So I took off up the next hill, and Charlie couldn’t hang in. Being a road rider, I can always use my strength to gain time on other riders on hills or open sections. This helps, as I lose time in technical sections, where I am not as good. At this point I was in about 15th place. I kept moving up and passing riders, and soon caught two Drake riders up one of the climbs. I passed one of them, but the other rider and I kept going back and forth for position. The final climb was just ahead, so I took off at the bottom and pushed over the top. My competitor couldn’t hang in, and I began the final descent to the finish.

I looked down and saw my frame pump had come undone, and was close to the spokes of my front wheel. I reached down to try to adjust it, when it got caught right in the spokes. I stopped on the side and tried to remove it as fast as I could, but it ended up sticking there. Rather than fussing with it, I ripped the cords holding the pump on the frame, and threw it towards the pit area where somebody would find it. I was just a few hundred meters from the finish, when I saw that same Drake rider pass come flying around me. Ugh! I jumped on the bike and chased as hard as I could, but he beat me to the line.

I rolled into the finish after and met up with one of the team coaches. We headed back to the tent, and after a little bit if down time, we went out to cheer on the varsity and JV riders. In the end, I had a fun day, but I got a little too wrapped up in the competition and raced too stressed out. I had a lot of fun off the bike with the team though, so that’s what really counts. And 7th isn’t a bad place for starting without a call up! So I was happy that I raced, and had a good time.

-Ben

 

Cassidy Mountjoy

4th Place Norcal MTB Race #3 Sophomore boys D2

 

This was the first mtb race I have raced where strategy played a major factor. Off the start line I was followed by another racer. He stayed on my tail for an entire hour, following my lines and drafting me. As I look back my mistakes are clearly visible, I shouldn’t have led the entire time, making it hard and stressful for me and somewhat easier for him. The Fort Ord course was longer this time and had more climbing, it was a blast. I loved flying through the sand sections full speed trying not to lose my line. In the last leg of the course my opponent made his move on the major climb. I tried to stay with him but struggled and fell back. I was a little bummed about the race but I definitely learned my lesson with strategy and how important it can be. Overall it was a learning experience that will help transform from a novice racer into an experienced one.

-Cassidy

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9. Lake Sonoma MTB Race #1 3/22/14 Healdsburg

Gianni Lamperti

 

1st Place Sonoma Race Series #1 sport male <35

 

When the race started I got clipped super fast and sprinted to the single track. After being first to the single track I went down the first decent pretty fast with no riders on my wheel. Knowing I had 3 laps to race I did not go all out. I felt good but had to govern how hard I went. After getting through the feed I went into the second lap strong but saving it for the third lap. There were a couple of creek crossings throughout the course that were hard to get up the other side. The third lap was super fun but very tiring. When I finished I figured out that I got 1st in the 35 under. It was a great day at Lake Sonoma.

-Luke

 

Gianni Lamperti

 

2nd Place Sonoma Race Series #1 sport male <35

 

The course was super fun and a little bit technical. At the start line I was ready because I knew that it would be a fast sprint up the fire road to the single track. I was second into the single track and stayed there to the second lap. On the fire road I passed my brother and then was in first. He passed me back going into the single track and we stayed together for the rest of the second lap. Going into the third lap we were together until a steep, slippery hill and I slipped and fell. He attacked then I could not catch him so I kept going till the finish. I ended up in second and thought I had a good race overall. I was happy for my brother and am excited for the next race of the series.

-Gianni

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10. Del Sol Stage Race 3/29-30/14 St. George, Utah

 

Isabella Brunner

1st Place Del Sol Stage Race Juniors W. 10-12

 

This was an excellent race event, except that NO JUNIORS CAME ……except Katie Clouse (2013 Junior National Champ)……BUT, she withdrew after the time trial. Day 1 began with a 10K Time Trial which was on a nice rolling rural road. The finish line appeared earlier than what was indicated on the race packet map. Same day in the afternoon was the Criterium. The course was on the old St. George airport runway on a mesa above St. George. Cool!!!! The USAC official put me in with the field of 28 Cat 3,4 women. The tarmac and the conditions were perfect for racing. I stayed with the lead pack until three laps to go, yet still finished well before a third of the group. Day 2 was the 11 mile Road Race. Again, I was started with the Cat 3,4 women. A storm was moving in from the west and the wind was whipping up (lots of red dust and strong gusts). Within 2 miles of the start, one woman crashed as she was blown by the wind. After 5 miles the “juniors” route split off from the women’s route (43 miles). I was on my own and literally “sailed” back with the wind to the finish. As the USAC official was writing my final result, hail and rain poured down. After 20 minutes, it was calm and sunny. Note: The promoter of this event is really trying to grow this as a junior race.

-Isabella

 

 

Stellar Field Will Battle At Winston-Salem Cycling Classic

 

13-06-wvr-7152

Stellar Field Will Battle At Winston-Salem Cycling Classic

Winston-Salem, N.C. – Some of the top professional cyclists from around the globe will be on the start line later this week for the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic in North Carolina.

 

The two days of competition includes UCI/National Racing Calendar (NRC) road races on Friday and National Criterium Calendar (NCC)/USA CRITS series races on Saturday. Provisional start lists include every stage winner of the recent Redlands Bicycle Classic, plus a roster of foreign and domestic pros with extensive European and international racing experience.

 

Featured riders in the men’s professional field include (in alphabetical order):

 

Zach Bell (CAN), Team SmartStop Pro Cycling

A 2008 and 2012 Olympian, Bell is the reigning Canadian national road champion, a stage winner last year at the Tour de Korea and the Tour de Taiwan, and won the King of the Mountains classification at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah. Teammate Jure Kocjan of Slovenia won two stages at the Vuelta Independencia Nacional in February and is a past stage winner at the Vuelta a Cuba.

 

Alex Candelario (USA), Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies

A stage winner at the 2012 Tour de Korea, Candelario has announced this is his final season of a professional career that began in 1999. Joining him on the Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies roster is 2010 Canadian national road champion Will Routley, as well as Jason Anthony and Mike Friedman, overall winners of the Nature Valley Grand Prix in 2011 and 2013, respectively. Optum was champion of the NRC standings last year and the top-ranked U.S. continental team in the UCI America Tour standings.

 

Jake Keough (USA), 5-hour Energy presented by Kenda Racing Team

Winner of stages last year at both the Volta a Portugal and the Tour of Qinghai Lake, Keough has also won stages at the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and the Vuelta del Uruguay. Teammate Chad Beyer is a past Giro d’Italia finisher (2011) and winner of the King of the Mountains classification on the way to a runner-up finish at the 2012 SRAM Tour of the Gila.

 

Jeff Louder (USA), UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team

Champion of the 2009 Redlands Bicycle Classic and the 2008 Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, Louder is also a stage winner at the Tour of Qinghai Lake and has extensive experience in both Europe and Asia. UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team’s roster also includes Australian sprinters Hilton Clarke, last year’s NCC and USA CRITS series champion, and Karl Menzies, who finished in the top five last year in the Speed Week series and NCC standings.

 

Joey Rosskopf (USA), Hincapie Sportswear Development Team

A stage winner and the overall champion at the 2014 Redlands Bicycle Classic, Rosskopf won stages of races in Canada, France and the United States last year on the way to a runner-up finish in the NCC standings. He will be joined on the Hincapie Sportswear Development Team roster by 2012 Under 23 national criterium champion Ty Magner.

 

The international men’s field for the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic also includes the Italian Amore & Vita-Selle SMP team, featuring American Logan Loader, and the Garneau-Quebecor Professional Cycling Team and Silber Pro Cycling Team, both of Canada.

 

The women’s field for the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic features a past world time trial champion, several current and national champions and many past Olympians:

 

Mara Abbott (USA), UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Women’s Team

The most-decorated active American cyclist, Abbott is a two-time national road champion (2007 and 2010), a two-time champion and four-time stage winner at the prestigious Giro d’Italia Femminile (Italy) and a consistent winner on the domestic and international circuits. Abbott won the Vuelta a El Salvador earlier this year, in addition to winning El Salvador’s Grand Prix de Oriente and a stage of the Redlands Bicycle Classic.

 

Erica Allar (USA), Colavita/Fine Cooking Stradalli Women’s Pro Cycling Team

Winner of the 2012 and 2013 NCC and the USA CRITS series titles, Allar won the Delray Beach Twilight Criterium last month and was runner-up at both the Novant Health Invitational Criterium and the Sunny King Criterium this month.

 

Joanne Kiesanowski (NZL), Team TIBCO

A three-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012) and two-time Commonwealth Games representative (2006, 2010), Kiesanowski has won eight national titles in four events: road race, points race, scratch race and the omnium. Teammate Amanda Miller was runner-up last year at the national criterium championships. In its 10th year, Team TIBCO is the longest running women’s team in North America.

 

Amber Neben (USA), FCS Cycling Team presented by Zngine + Mr. Restore

The 2008 world time trial champion and a member of the winning team time trial squad in 2012, Neben is also a past national road (2003) and time trial (2012) champion. Winner of the 2006 and 2012 time trials at the Pan Am Games, Neben is a two-time Olympian (2008 and 2012).

 

Shelley Olds (USA), Alé Cipollini-Galassia

Runner-up at the GP de Dottignies last week and a past national champion on both the road and track, Olds used her sprinting prowess to win national criterium titles in 2010 and 2011 and win back-to-back scratch race titles in 2008 and 2009. Winner of the 2010 Tour of New Zealand and the 2012 Tour of Chongming Island, she finished seventh in the 2012 Olympic road race race and won a stage of the Giro d’Italia Femminile the same year.

 

Alison Powers (USA), UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Women’s Team

Winner of the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic road race and criterium last year, Powers is the reigning national criterium champion and a past national time trial (2008) champion. Overall winner of the Tour Femenino de San Luis in January, Powers won her second NRC title last year and a two-time winner of the Joe Martin Stage Race. Joining her and Abbott on the squad is Lauren Tamayo, silver medalist in the 2012 Olympic team pursuit.

 

Laura Van Gilder (USA), Mellow Mushroom presented by Pink Siren Sports

The leader of the USA CRITS series has been racing professionally since 1992 and was the 2000 national criterium champion. A two-time winner of the Tour of America’s Dairyland (2012 and 2013), she won the NRC title in 2002. Heading into last weekend’s USA CRITS seres races, teammate Laura Jorgensen was second in the standings and the Mellow Mushroom presented by Pink Siren Sports squad led the team standings.

 

Jade Wilcoxson (USA), Optum Pro Cycling, presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies

The current national road champion, Wilcoxson also won a gold medal in the individual and the team pursuit at track nationals last year and was runner-up at the 2013 national cyclocross championships. Teammate Leah Kirchmann, the Canadian national criterium champion, won a pair of stages at the Redlands Bicycle Classic on her way to third overall.

 

Italian squad S.C. Michela Fanini Rox, the Colombian national women’s team, and two squads from Mexico – Estado De Mexico Faren and the Mexican national team – bring additional international competition to the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic.

 

Friday’s 50.4-mile road race for women begins at 9:30 a.m., followed by the men’s 120-mile road race at 12:30 p.m. USA Cycling criterium races on a new, 1.5-mile course near Winston-Salem’s Innovation Quarter begin at 8:30 a.m. and conclude before the finish of the pro men’s road race. Saturday’s pro criterium for women starts at 4:45 p.m. and at 6 p.m. for pro men, both on a 0.9-mile loop through downtown. A 50-mile and 80-mile gran fondo in the morning and a special USA Cycling criterium in the afternoon precede both pro races.

 

More information on all events can be found on the official website, www.winstonsalemcycling.com. There is also an event page on Facebook: www.facebook.com/WSCycling. On Twitter, the Winston-Salem Cycling Classic will tweet under the handle @WSCycling and use the hashtag “#WinstonCycling” for all events.

 

- WSC -

 

Results:Results Subaru Sea Otter Classic – April 10,11,12

Criterium racers experienced the thrill of racing a 1-km section of the Laguna Seca Raceway between Turns 2 and 11. The course includes challenging technical turns and is not entirely flat.

Category Results: 

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Pro Results:

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Friday Road Race

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Friday Circuit Race

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Friday Pro Short Track

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Friday Enduro

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Friday Cat 1 Dual Slalom

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Saturday Races

Cat 2,3 Down

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Pro Cross Country

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Pump Park (1)

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Pump Park

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Circuit Race

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Road Race

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Teams Finalized For The 2014 Amgen Tour Of California Women’s Races

 

Circuit Race and Time Trial Poised to Bring

Unparalleled Women’s Racing to the U.S.

 

LOS ANGELES (April 9, 2014) – In what is shaping up as the most competitive women’s cycling series ever staged in the U.S., the 2014 Amgen Tour of California will welcome 20 high-caliber teams from around the world to compete in a women’s circuit race on May 11, followed by a time trial with nearly two dozen of the sport’s best on May 12. This is the first time in race history the Amgen Tour of California will host both a women’s time trial and a circuit race, bringing fans more women’s competition than any other event of its kind. The events are presented by SRAM.

 

For the circuit race, World and National Champions, Olympic medalists, and women from the top professional, national and composite teams will face off in Sacramento with the State Capitol as the backdrop following the start of the men’s eight-day stage race.

The U.S. professional teams selected for the circuit race include Team Specialized-lululemon, UCI’s second-ranked women’s team and World Team Time Trial Champions for two years running; UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team, which has earned overall victories at the Tour de San Luis and the Tour of El Salvador in their debut year as a team; TWENTY16 Pro Cycling presented by Breakaway from Cancer®, the only U.S. women’s road team to earn medals in the London Olympic Games; Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies, whose roster includes several riders for the U.S. national team as part of a Spring Classics campaign in Europe; and Team TIBCO, the top NRC-ranked team in the U.S in 2013, and the longest running women’s team in North America.

 

“Our thanks go to the race organizers for including women’s racing over two days this year,” said two-time Olympic time trial gold medalist Kristin Armstrong, who serves as the high performance director for the TWENTY16. “This is an incredible time to showcase the sport and an opportunity for women riders and teams to introduce the sport to the incredible viewership that the Amgen Tour of California generates. The next generation may be out there and inspired!”

 

The circuit race will be capped at 115 riders, a massive field that will add to the excitement as these stellar athletes race around California’s State Capitol building along a four-corner, 1.25-mile circuit course. The top three finishers will secure their team a coveted individual time trial position, allowing those teams to put their best time trial specialists in the mix the following day.

 

“We are thrilled to up the ante for women cyclists with two days of world-class racing at the 2014 Amgen Tour of California, and proud to provide powerful platform to promote women’s cycling,” said Kristin Bachochin, executive director of the race and senior vice president of AEG Sports. “The fields feature the top women cyclists in the sport today, and we know the excitement of hosting both events will be shared by cycling fans around the world.”

 

With team rosters yet to be announced, the complete list of teams participating in the 2014 Amgen Tour of California women’s circuit race includes:

 

· BMW Development Team

· Canada National Team

· China Chongming-Giant-Champion System Pro Cycling

· Colavita/Fine Cooking Women’s Pro Cycling Team

· CRCA: Stan’s NoTubes presented by enduranceWERX

· DNA Cycling presented by K4

· FCS|Zngine presented by Mr. Restore

· Folsom Bike/Cervélo

· JETCycling

· Metromint Cycling

· Monster Media Racing Team

· Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies

· Pinnacle-Reactor Racing Team presented by JL Velo

· SPY GIANT RIDE Elite Cycling Team

· Team Specialized-lululemon

· Team TIBCO

· TWENTY16 Pro Cycling presented by Breakaway from Cancer

· Threshold Sports powered by Leadout Endurance Coaching

· UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team

· Vanderkitten Racing

“We’re obviously very proud to be a part of these events, and we anticipate two very fast and seriously exciting days of women’s racing. We hope the trend of more women’s events continues,” said Michael Zellmann, SRAM’s road public relations manager.

 

In what will be a thrilling time trial in Folsom on May 12, covering the same fast and flat 12.6-mile course the men will race later in the day, the invitation-only women’s individual event will feature some of the best time trialists in the world racing against the clock: returning champion Evelyn Stevens of Specialized-lululemon; top-ranked time trialists Alison Powers of UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team and Carmen Small of Specialized-lululemon; Amber Neben, who recently returned to competition riding for FCS|Zngine presented by Mr. Restore after a season-ending injury last year; and Paralympian and UCI Paracycling World Champion Greta Neimanas of the U.S. Paracycling Team.

 

“This will be my third time racing the Amgen Tour of California Time Trial, and I am thrilled. It is wonderful to have the chance to partake in part of one of the big U.S. stage races – the fans are always great, and the courses are always challenging,” said 2013 Amgen Tour of California Time Trial champion Evelyn Stevens.

 

“After a horrific crash at last year’s race, the first cycling goal I set was to be healthy enough to race in the 2014 version of the Amgen Tour of California Time Trial,” said Amber Neben, a world time trial and national road race champion. “I am very excited to

 

be able to accept the invitation to compete in both the time trial and the new circuit race. It is special for me to make it back to this level, and it is important for the sport of women’s cycling to have opportunities like the Amgen Tour of California.”

 

The start list for the May 12 Folsom time trial follows:

 

1. Evelyn Stevens, Team Specialized-lululemon

2. Carmen Small, Team Specialized-lululemon

3. Jasmin Glaesser, Team TIBCO

4. Anika Todd, Team TIBCO

5. Laura Brown, Colavita/Fine Cooking Women’s Pro Cycling Team

6. Annie Ewart, Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies

7. Brianna Walle, Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies

8. Kristin McGrath, TWENTY16 Pro Cycling presented by Breakaway from Cancer

9. Alison Tetrick, TWENTY16 Pro Cycling presented by Breakaway from Cancer

10. Gillian Carleton, Vanderkitten Racing

11. Amber Neben, FCS|Zngine presented by Mr. Restore

12. Hong Yu Liang, China Chongming-Giant-Champion System Pro Cycling

13. Greta Neimanas, U.S. Paracycling Team

14. Robin Farina, SPY GIANT RIDE Elite Cycling Team

15. Alison Powers, UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team

16. Mara Abbott, UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team

17. Kathryn Bertine, Saint Kitts and Nevis National Team

 

The final three spots will go to the top three finishers of the May 11 circuit race.

 

“I’m super excited to be racing the Amgen Tour of California Time Trial this year. It’s one of the highest profile events for women’s cycling in the U.S., and being invited to compete is an honor,” said Paralympian Greta Neimanas. “Hopefully by racing in Folsom, it will bring a bit more attention to paracycling and show that we’re serious athletes, just like the able-bodied pros. I’d like to thank the race organizers, sponsors and SRAM – I can’t wait to race!”

 

The cyclists will compete for a combined prize of $20,000 over the two races, one of the highest payouts in domestic women’s cycling. Both women’s races will be streamed live via the Amgen Tour of California Tour Tracker, available at www.amgentourofcalifornia.com, and will be featured in the race’s television broadcast later in the day.

Meeting the Team – An Interview with Eric Marcotte

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Eric Marcotte winning Stage One at the Vuelta Independencia Nacional

By: @AstridvanUden

After a busy start to the road season, we got the chance to sit down with Eric Marcotte. Eric has competed in all three of the Team SmartStop’s stage races thus far this season. In the Vuelta Independencia Nacional, Eric won the first stage and subsequently wore the yellow jersey for the first several stages. At the Redlands Bicycle Classic, Eric served as a key contributor to both Travis McCabe’s triumphant run and the Team’s overall success. Michael Creed describes Eric as a “power bulldog. He is capable of massive, massive things. Hopefully, together we can unlock the code to getting him using that power more effectively and wisely.”

 

Here we were able to hear from Eric describe his experiences at the Vuelta Independencia Nacional, healthy dietary choices, and balancing his time as a chiropractor.

 

 

Tell us about your Dominican Republic Stage One win and the experience of donning the yellow jersey for the first few stages?

 

Hard to explain the experience we had in the Republica Dominicana racing the Vuelta Independencia Nacional. I was telling the guys, we each have stories before, during, and after each race, “this place es muy loco!!”

 

I was lucky enough to get the win and leaders jersey on the first day and had my teammate, Rob Britton taking 3rd that day (yes, luck is where opportunity meets preparation). From then, I /our team was in the Yellow leaders jersey until the 5th day, with a very hard mountain stage. Rob Britton that day rode out of his mind to move into 2nd place. We were able to protect his positioning throughout the final stages for a 2nd Overall Place. In addition, we had Jure Kocjan take two stage wins, Zach Bell taking 2nd in a close sprint, and a couple more top 10 finishes. Although not on the “results,” Travis McCabe and Flavio De Luna Davila were just as critical in support.

 

With being in the Yellow jersey, it changed my experience here as it had me doing podium presentations daily, USADA doping control daily, photographs, and in general the riders and spectators viewing me differently. It was a special time and I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to live it with the belief in me from Michael Creed.

 

One of the most special moments with the Yellow jersey was having it presented to me by the mother of a cyclist from the town was being raced in that was killed, as he tried to stop a robbery. It was an honor and an unforgettable moment as I left the podium and gave her a huge hug.

 

Eric Marcotte on the podium at Vuelta Independencia Nacional with Euris Vidal's mother

Eric Marcotte on the podium at Vuelta Independencia Nacional with Euris Vidal’s mother

You are very big on your nutrition and what you put into your body, Tell us about your diet? What “rules” do you follow while training or racing?

I wouldn’t really call it a “diet” as that has a restrictive connotation to it. Rather, I just eat real food. No packages, no processing. Mostly raw, very little if anything cooked. All meals consist of eating as broad a spectrum as possible. Certainly I am blessed and supported in what I do to be able to have these options and choose to care for myself this way. But, it is a priority to me, so I make it happen. If your car is more important, you find ways to justify putting money into that and skimping on what fuel goes into you. Just a matter of priorities and what each of us wants to experience, rather than a right vs. wrong way of things.

 

Why is it important and what do you think the biggest mistake (generally speaking) professional athletes make when it comes to nutrition?

My experience personally and professionally in my clinic, I get a sense that people believe they get “energy” the instant they consume something. Rather than realizing and utilizing the energy stores that are already present in our bodies. For instance, 1lb of fat is ~3500KCal. That can run you for 5 hours at 700KCal/hours. That’s pretty efficient. However, because of misunderstandings and misinformation, as well as ignorance (lack of knowledge) practically every “endurance” athlete is a carbohydrate burner. Even at the lowest of energy outputs. Don’t believe me, hop on and do a Metabolic test/VO2 max test. See what fuels you’re burning at 100 watts or 100 beats per minute heartrate. and how long it takes to be burnt out on all Carbs. vs. someone who understands how this metabolic shift can be affected with the composition, ratios, timing of foods. As well as the training that is going along with it. So, basically it’s not just calories in vs. calories out to equal weight loss or energy expenditure. It’s much more than that.

 

You seem to really enjoy Osmo Nutrition’s products. What sets them apart from other products you’ve used in the past?

I actually do. They’ve been extremely helpful in keeping that hydration throughout training and racing. From what I have noticed personally, and I feel I am a good subject to be as objective as possible about this, is that I have much better hydration status throughout the training and races. It certainly helps push the hydration into the cells. Rather than being very active with drinking a lot of fluids, that in actuality get us deficient and low on electrolytes to help balance the osmolarity of the tissues.

 

How do you juggle the difficulties between running your own chiropractic practice, Endurance Chiropractic, and bring a professional cyclist?

This has been in the works. I am blessed with the support and community here in Phoenix/Scottsdale when it comes to the endurance athletes. It is a great balance with me having the information, education, experience to care for them throughout their lives and goals. In turn, because they see the benefit of the information and care that I provide, it helps support me in what I am able to experience and accomplish. Then, in turn, allows me to speak from a place of knowledge and understanding because I have been there and done that. I experience the benefits of regular Chiropractic care, regular Physical Therapy, regular Massage therapy, consistent balance in nourishing my body, consistent balance work and stretching, among others. I can refer and educate because I see the benefits myself.

 

To keep up with Eric Marcotte and the rest of Team SmartStop:

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SmartStopProCycling

Twitter handle: @TeamSmartStop

Instagram page: teamsmartstop

 

 

 

 

 

No Longer Green at Redlands

 

Steven RBC

By Steven Davis (KHS/Maxxis/Jakroo)

 

The 2014 Redlands Bicycle Classic celebrated their 30th year anniversary and I earned the chance to race this ‘Epic’ for the first time. Racing for KHS-Maxxis p/b JAKROO was an honor as well as a great experience. Where to begin?

 

First and foremost, I simply have to say ‘Thank You’. This was my second ever NRC (National Racing Calendar) race but first time on an actual team. When I say team, I want the emphasis to be on ‘team’. For those that might be unfamiliar with the ‘behind the scenes’, this sport is bloody impossible without a team. This extends from your actual teammates, to the director, managers, mechanics, soigneurs, and hosts for housing. The details behind the curtain are near unimaginable, and a special ‘thank you’ goes out to all those that make it possible for us to show up and race our bikes.

 

For their 30th edition, the Classic decided to add an extra day of racing with the famed Highland Circuit, stage 1. This stage of the race that has not been used in several years, and upped the amount of racing from 4 to 5 days. Even though I was born and raised in Pennsylvania, living in southern California now, I think it is okay for me to use the local vernacular in describing the course as Gnarly. It consisted of 20 laps on a 3 mile course. There was one climb on the course that was rumored to max out at a near 14% gradient. The race was moderately fast, fun, technical, and essentially a day that would begin a week-long war of attitrition. Although most of the 200+ starters finished, it was enough to get a glimpse at how 5 days of quality racing would saturate the system.

 

Having never raced this event, I can tell you that I was mentally prepared going into the race, with thanks to my teammates and director. So much so, I can honestly say that I was a tad intimidated. I was told that sometimes just to finish the stages might take all the focus that one can muster. At this level, it is possible to feel a sense of accomplishment from just making it through. To be forthcoming, this was hard for me to accept. I am not quite sure that I have ever entered something to simply finish and I still do not like the idea of being contented by such an endeavour.

 

The Individual Time Trial Stage 2 was held at 7,000ft in the mountain of Big Bear. Fears of snow and ice overnight cleared with blue sky and crisp mountain air for the 7.8 mile fast and technical stage.

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I can still remember moments during preparation in the winter for this event. On a hard ride at training camp we were 4 hours into the ride climbing Hwy 38 towards Big Bear. Paul Abrahams our team director pulled up beside me in the car and yelled, “This is when it happens at Beaumont! Everything you have done to this point, just gets you here. Now is when it matters”. These moments had me dreaming of making the front group, putting in a late surprise attack, allowing my teammates David Santos or Fabrizio Von Nacher to get a free ride, setting up the podium and an upset on the day.

 

Well, 4 months later, things change. Fitness ebbs and flows, injuries come and go, and team orders dictate your role for the day as we entered the Beaumont Road Race Stage 3. This stage covered 120 miles on a lap course which was exposed to the wind which punchy climbs and a KOM and sprint points to be contested each lap. I did my job to the best of my abilities and learned quite a great deal on the day. This was my first real experience riding in the caravan. To those that are unfamiliar with this, imagine 200 racers from 25 teams each team having a follow car. There are also officials on motorcycles, medical car, and three cars filled with race communications. The difference between the first placed rider in the group and the last follow car can be nearly a kilometer. Trying to weave in and out on a bicycle at speeds over what you might find hard to believe is a true test of character, skill, and willingness to compete.

 

The Downtown Redlands Criterium Stage 4 would host a fast and technical one mile event that had 9-turns. The race duration was 90 minutes with plenty of primes and sprint laps to be contested. I thought this course was a lot of fun and that the downtown Redlands organizers did an incredible job. So much so, that I now see myself going back to Redlands just to hang out! It was a great day for our teammate Fabrizio Von Nacher as he made the breakaway with the green jersey (best sprinter) rider. Our goal for the day was for him to earn the jersey and and he came very close, gathering as many sprint points as possible. Sadly for me, today I was merely pack fodder. I stayed mid-pack, tried conserving as much energy as possible, all awhile learning how to simply just become a better (technically) bike racer.

 

The Queen Stage of the event is the famed Sunset Loop, Stage 5. The stage included similar circuits of the criterium course and then we headed out of town to the arduous and unforgiving 6.5 mile Sunset Loop. We were to complete 12 circuits of the Sunset Loop then return to downtown Redlands for the finish of 5 more laps on the criterium course. This was certainly my favorite stage of the Redlands Classic. It boasted Single lane s-bend switchback roads with undulating ascents which forest-covered and protected on the way up. Once we crested the climb, it was barren and exposed at the top with varying degrees of pavement as we railed the adrenaline-spiking risk-taking descents. This race was one of attrition, focus, and will.

 

Sunset was another great teacher both physically and mentally. It also taught us what it means to be a teammate. David Santos, Fabrizio Von Nacher and our guest rider Timothy Rugg had all made the front group. Tim flatted and Dave being the friend, teammate, and guy that he is, gave his wheel to Tim. Tim was slightly higher placed overall and was pursuing the Best Amateur Jersey. David Santos had spent all off-season preparing for this race. With hours of training, commitment, focus, and sacrifices gave up his opportunity at a great result in the interest of doing what was right. I hope that when I am faced with a decision such as this, I too, can be unselfish and as instinctual as Dave’s actions.

 

Personally, I finished. Once again feeling contented with this is hard to grasp, but doing so will only help me in moving forward, and I can confidently say that I am better-prepared for success at Redlands in 2015. Over 200 of the Best cyclists in America started this race, with about 120 actually completing the event. Team KHS-Maxxis p/b JAKROO fought every second of the race and would have hoped for a better outcome, but I know we all got stronger as a team and are ready to continue the fight in 2014. Results will come and WE are prepared!

 

The ‘thank you’ also extends to the race directors, promotors, and the community of Redlands who all went out of their way to make us feel welcomed. Teams, races, and riders come and go year after year. Being a part of something as special as The Redlands Classic and celebrating its’ 30th year, was an honor. Visiting multiple schools and talking about why we race and bike safety leading into the event was cool and even better was having those students cheer for us while racing is truly special.

 

Thank you KHS, Maxxis, JAKROO Custom Apparel, Serfas, Hammer Nutrition, Rudy Project, IRT Wheels, Xpedo, Velo Saddles, Praxis Works, Rennie & Associates, Q2, Bike Religion, Chamois Butter, WD-40 Bike, Bicycle Blue Book and the Management of IPA sports.

 

Without our sponsors, non of this would be possible. You are the reason “We Can” and I promise that we are as committed to you as you are to Us. Thank you!

 

Next Up- It does not matter, because We are ready for it.

 

Wiles And Rosskopf Steal Yellow In Stage Five

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Joseph Rosskopf makes a move that pays off.

 

Redlands California – The 30th annual Redlands Bicycle Classic presented by San Manuel band of Mission Indians came to an exciting end on the streets of Redlands Sunday. The final day of the Classic featured the Sunset Road Race, and if the past has taught us anything being the race leader in the Yellow Jersey isn’t a guarantee of success going into Sunset.

 

Travis McCabe of Team Smart Shop had the slimmest of margins leading to the final stage. He and his Smart Stop team had only a 27 second margin on the top 10 in the field. The warmer temperatures and winds on Sunset set up a game of attrition and when the moment was right Joseph Rosskopf of Hincapie Sportswear Development got in a break of four. Travis McCabe and the Smart Shop team fought to the end but Rosskopf took the virtual yellow and won the stage and the classic.

 

Joseph Rosskopf move paid off and he finished ahead of the field. That gap was more than enough time to take the yellow Jersey from Travis McCabe. The stage victory on Citrus Avenue in front of the cheering crowds was the cherry on top.

 

The final stage GC results were Joseph Rosskopf of Hincapie Sportswear Development, James Oram Bissell Development Team and Travis McCabe Smart Shop in 3rd place.

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Mara Abbott Taking the stage win.

 

On the Women’s side Leah Kirchmann yellow jersey was holding 10 second lead over Alison Powers of UnitedHealthcare going into Sunday’s stage. Tayler Wiles of Specialized-Lululemon was the aggressive rider of the afternoon as she was able to make a move that got her in a move with Mara Abbott and ended up finishing second in the stage. The yellow jersey group of Leah Kirchmann couldn’t reel back the move. Mara Abbott UnitedHealthcare ended up with the stage win and Tayler Wiles took second but with it sealed the GC victory.

 

The final women podium finished Tayler Wiles Specialized Lululemon, Mara Abbott UnitedHealthcare and Leah Kirchmann Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies.