The race was held in Bakersfield on a new course this year. The promoter did a great job, they had tents to give the riders shade and large containers of liquids and it was very organized. The roads were great and the course was very challenging.
The 60+ race started at approximately7:35 a.m., and it was already a little warm. Not knowing the course, I decided to refrain from attacking until the second lap. The first lap pace was fairly mellow with a few worker bees setting a moderate pace. After the 1st lap turn around the peloton became antsy and we had a few attacks but no one was able to get away from this very alert field. Then when we started the first climb a few miles later, Don Davidson made an attack and went clear. The peloton did not react, I was thinking this was perfect, I had a rabbit to go after. I waited until the climb got steeper and made my move. I jumped hard, and I had Steve Bernede on my wheel, I sat down and settled into a hard tempo. Steve was still there along with a single file line behind him. I surged and lost Steve and the rest, then I took the pace up a little higher. Shortly after I caught Don and eased as I passed yelling at him to get on, he did. When we hit a short section on the down hill Don came around a couple of times not wanting to be a slacker, to his demise he came off on the next hill. From that point on, it was a time trial for me (my specialty). I felt good and kept the hammer down just backing off a few kilo’s from the finish when I couldn’t see the chase group. I coasted across the line to victory. The peloton finished a couple of minutes later with Mike Marotta winning the sprint in 2nd and John Rubcic taking 3rd.