Nevada City Classic
Drove 1100 miles in 36 hours for 90 minutes of racing; probably not the best idea I’ve had but I didn’t have much going on that weekend anyway – so whata ya gonna do. I was planning on doing some new circuit race that sounded pretty cool with a mile climb on the course, but at the last minute they felt as though they should have a race like every other race in socal and changed it into a crit. I passed on that real fast and decided to head North for a real race. I called my Pops and told him to get ready for a solid Father’s Day in the car because nobody else wanted to join in on the road trip.
So the awesomeness began Saturday when I got off work at 4:00. I had my trustyCivic packed up, took off toward LA to swoop up Pops then headed North. We drove until about 1:00 AM, grabbed a hotel and crashed out. A short ride in the morning, add on a couple cups of coffee and back on the road. We knocked out the last couple of hours and made it to Nevada City with a few hours to kill. Nevada City is pretty legit I must say, and the locals were super pumped about this race;cruising the streets PBR in hand getting their drink-on (on a side note, not everyone drinks PBR in Nevada City). Once I registered, I got all spandexed up and rode around to check out the course and scout the competition. All the while the Cat 3 race was going on; some speed racer blew the downhill corner doing about mach 10, and managed to kamikaze through both sets of hay bails, only to land right in front of the medics, classic.
Once we lined up, I noticed Kenda/5 Hour Energy had 3 guys, Bontrager Livestrong 3 guys, Cal Giant had an army, Pistachios had 2 guys and then every Norcal local team seemed to be there, including the Strava teams, so you know they were getting their segment runs in during the race. Plus, yours truly, the Socal kid riding for aNorthwest team. When the race started, the streets were lined with pumped-up locals or super pumped-up locals if they were PBR in hand. The course went straight down, made a couple of lefts leading into a twisty turny climb up into a neighborhood where the real party was – sprinklers and hoses going off on the top of the climb. This was appreciated, of course, because it was in the triple digits;hot is an understatement. Of course the first few laps we were just going for it up the climb then just cruising at 50+ on the descent dipping through the corners. Everyone was trying to get somebody off the front or have the right mix go for a break, myself included, and it took a Cal Giant guy plus a Kenda guy to make it stick. That ended up being the winning move right there, and I fully missed it , but so did Livestrong, so I wasn’t the only one hating life. This race was defiantly hard to try and do any controlling; it was either attack or cruise or have some local Fred try to attack – comedy. Anytime there was a legit attack from the field it would pretty much just be a slap in the face from Kenda/Cal Giant as they just sat on you. With about 30 to go, I realized this was going to come down to a small group and to just be ready to go on the last couple laps; I was over trying to make anything happen on my own. Around 7 laps to go I started to get my cramp on, so every time we would hit the top of the climb, I would grab a feed from a local, which I was almost hoping would be a PBR but to my disappointment it never was, so just water for me, which I would down or dump on me having my own little wet jersey contest. That seemed to work so I was cool. With two laps to go, a few that were still in the field decided to make this race a bit harder with attacks coming up the climb so we were definitely moving now, big chain ringing – the whole thing no big deal. Of course nobody got away , but others were getting dropped reallly fast. It came down to only 10 of us in the field. The sprint started on top of the hill because the finish was at the bottom of the descent, which was different, and I managed fifth place, but with the two guys up the road it put me into 7th place for the day. Not too bad, but nothing to brag about.
Once I got my prize money we were out of there around 7 for a straight drive home besides the slight detour to drop off Pops. Making it home at 4 am only to wake up to go spin some wrenches at work then back to LA to fly out early Tuesday morning to Georgia for Nationals.