Ontario GP: Opening Day 1-13-13
by Charon Smith (Surf City Cyclery/Sterling BMW)
The race season is back and I am happy about it! This wasn’t just another race, it was the first race of the year with many new teams and new kits; everything new except the players and racers. It was a very interesting day for me and the SCC/Sterling BMW boys because it was our first race together as teammates. I was the only returning guy from last year. My other amazing teammates had the day off to race, so we lined up six strong men from SCC/Sterling BMW. We had our pre-race meeting, which I had asked John Wike to lead the night before. I would chime in with my $0.02 if I thought of anything.
The plan was simple: have fun, race as a TEAM, cover moves, get in moves, and, if it came down to a sprint they would set me up to close the deal. Almost sicty people started the race, which was a good-sized field considering it was such an early start to the season. Teams represented included Helen’s, Rock Sport Racing, CA Pools, the everpresent MRI/Monster Media, and Surf City Cyclery/Sterling BMW, along with a few smaller teams.
The race started out pretty chill but the attacks started after about twenty minutes. It was nothing too stressful. Guys were feeling each other out and trying to see who was fit and who was willing to work. Nobody wanted to tip his hand too early.
A few moves got up the road, but nothing looked like it would stick. Our team was in every move and we let our presence be known; making a big impression as this was our very first race together. Rob Kamppila, Patrick Bos, Ben Travis, Dan Reback, and John Wike were amazing!! I told the guys, “keep talking and call things out,” which they did so we didn’t miss a move. Pat and Ben, with their big motors, would slowly bring back anything I asked them to while John and Rob kept the pace high along, bridging up to moves we did not like.
When the lap cards came out, I told John and Rob that MRI was going to try to attack very hard with 1-2 laps to go and to be ready for it. I knew it was coming because that’s how they beat me a couple of times last year. Like I called it, Chris DeMarchi and Kayle Leo Grande did just that. But we were ready.
Rob took a monster pull into turn 5 to get John Wike within arms’ reach of Chris and Kayle. They had a slight gap, but I kept screaming at Wike, “up, up, up!” He got me there but had to turn himself inside-out. What a beast. He dropped me off in the final turn, right onto Kayle’s wheel heading into the sprint. I felt very calm and confident because I knew he came from a distance and it was no way he could hold a powerful sprint after attacking from just before turn five. As he got out of his saddle I jumped hard and I was able to put a gap on him and the field. Our team got its first win for the year. Huge props to all the men who lined up so early in the season I am looking forward to a great year with health competition throughout 2013. Continue to dream big and without limitations. It is within your reach! Thanks to CI and the awesome staff for this platform.
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