What a great Memorial Day weekend of racing! The weekend kicked off for the Surf City/Sterling BMW boys on Sunday up in Westlake Village for the 21st Annual Barry Wolf GP. The weather was amazing at this awesome new venue, and the course was wide safe and very fast. And as a sprinter, that’s just the way I like it..
On Sunday we were only able to line up three guys: John Slover, Mike Faello and I were in competition with a very stacked field. The 35+ race had the largest race of the day with over a hundred guys lined up and ready for war. Every team from SoCal was present and had players. Monster Media lined up the most players with 12 to 15 guys, including three of their big guns, who are former National champs. They meant business on this day and wanted to dominate very badly.
In our team meeting we discussed how we wanted to race. Since we were short-handed, our goal was simple; surf wheels, sit in, and keep it together so I could close for the sprint. During the actual race, we communicated beautifully, keeping each other informed of who was where and who from the other teams were doing what. It was teamwork at its finest.
A couple of moves went off but nothing serious and nothing to panic about. Of course, the Monster Media boys kept attacking lap after lap. I thought if they continued to shoot off bullets, it would just benefit me and our team, as long as they didn’t create a split. The split never formed because the field was so large and everyone was chasing or not willing to suffer in the long tough headwind section of the course.
When the lap cards went up I thought, “Sweet! Time for the explosion on the last lap.” But, the pace was not high enough and guys who should not have been in the front made it there, so staying calm and relaxed became the goal at that point. I waited and waited until I saw a line before turn three on the last lap gave. Then I made one small effort into the third wheel. Coming out of turn three I was not where I wanted to be as the run in to the finish line was long with a stiff headwind, but I had no choice and had to man-up. I started my sprint too early and quickly sat back down as I realized the line was still a ways out. I still held on to my speed, then opened the jets again and held off the field for win number eight for Surf City Cyclery/Sterling BMW.
Monday, May 28
USAC #5 held in Carson, was race number two of the Memorial Day weekend. Once again the 35+ race was the largest field of the day with well over 85 hard men ready to throw blows. Unlike the previous day, I had six teammates: Tommy “Fireman” Robles, Mike Faello, Travis “Spaz” Wilkerson, Kyle, and Robbie Miranda. Tommy laid out the plan for the day. Our plans are normally simple and to the point, and we respect who is in charge of the meeting on race day. The plan was to win out of a break, and from the field our goal was to seek and destroy.
Travis was very active early, which was great because it forced other teams to chase and stay near the front and allowed me to sit and just stay alert. Eventually, the rubber band snapped and Travis went up the rode with five other guys. The break was perfect because Travis was clearly the strong man in the move.
Late in the race, Chris DeMarchi from Monster Media attacked hard from the left side before turn four. I was alert and pounced on him quickly. We both made it up to the break and stayed away until two laps to go. It always sucks getting brought back after suffering lap after lap.
After we got caught, my teammate Tommy Robles drilled it on the backside before turn three and then came along side of me. I let him in front of me and yelled, “Go!” He attacked very hard before the last turn, which was perfect for me and him, as it forced other teams to respond. I was still sitting pretty good when the sprint started. I waited for the perfect time and then kicked hard, shifted into my 11, and then put the babies to bed for back-to-back wins on Memorial Day weekend. Win number nine for the year. Surf City Cyclery/Sterling BMW continues to shine bright.