After time off, and then trying to get back up to speed at the Bus Stop, it was back to racing last weekend with a double-header. The Raisin Hope Foundation Classic was on Saturday at the CSP track in Golden. The dynamics of the race were a bit odd with a lot of the heavy hitters being out of town for Utah, or otherwise skipping the race to save their matches for Sunday's State Crit Champs in Niwot.
Mr. Porter and another dude went from lap one. I followed a little surge by someone on lap two, which ended up gapping us off the front. Things behind looked boring, so I put my head down and drove across taking the dude with me. Got up without much hassle, and then we started working. We shelled the guy I brought up in about a lap, and then Dan and I were doing the majority of the work by far. We eased up, hoping to get a VC guy to come across, but no luck, so we just kept things turning, watching for the usual counter attacks. Got in, recovered, followed moves... missed the one that was finally going to stick, but at least it had Seth in it. I followed Baker several times when he tried to go, but he and I were being watched. Finally he went on the other side of the road, and I missed the move. Damnit... good legs and stuck in what had become the second group on the road. Frustrating.
Niwot was bound to be ugly... my least favorite type of race; a tight, flat, fast, figure-8 crit which was the State Championships no less. Definitely a strong and motivated field. I got a shitty start, closed about 8 gaps of people already coming off in the first three laps, and then got stuck behind a bit of a crash. Ugh... chased on as I was on the limit, but made it back. Then it was mostly follow the leader for the next 700 laps. I felt pretty solid, but every time I'd move up, I'd have trouble holding my position with all the big crit boys. I liked the cornering mostly, it was fun taking faster lines than most of the guys around. And I treated it like cyclocross practice, making 6 really hard accelerations every lap. So it was constantly on and off. At the end I was still in it, and feeling fine, but didn't feel like dicing with the guys fighting for 30th. Probably a good thing since a crash went on the final lap and I had to play NASCAR... driving through the smoke with my eyes close and hoping for the best. Made it through with no speed, and the guys I had been riding with all day finished in the top 20, so I likely would have ended up in a pretty decent spot. Oh well. Like I said, good training.
Tuesday I went out to the airport TT course, to help Seth in his final workout before his assault at Master's Worlds. Motopacing was on the agenda. It's a boring course out there, but has almost no traffic. I made him work hard, and he was killing it. So you know, I figure at least a good part of his success at the races should be credited towards me, right?
Thursday was another chance to punish people, and myself at the Bus Stop ride. Saturday Jessica and I got out for a great moto-ride. It was killer-hot, and riding up high was definitely nicer than anything down below! Then Jesse and Britainy came up since somehow she had never seen Wayne's World. The effect that the absence of that movie must have had on her childhood, is unbelievable.
And yesterday it was back to racing, with the HART circuit, criterium, whatever it is considered. I like that course, it's got a good power-hill in it to break things up, and you can't really go too easily, with the plan of coasting back on the other side of the hill, because it's usually windy and fast. Plan was to be patient, and I was. Just following wheels that might have been dangerous, keeping things rolling when people stopped riding. I was even right there on several primes, but didn't go for them, since I wanted to be ready for any attacks. And then I missed the move that was finally going to stick. Damn! So frustrating. Chuck got caught out, and had missed it as well. By that point, no one really wanted to do any work to chase, so I did, hoping to get Chuck closer to the move, but it was too late. Frustrated again, with good legs.
It was close to 100 degrees during the race, and I was completely cooked afterwards. Even broke out the air conditioning for the way home, and then drank 160+ oz. of fluids between the race end and bedtime.