Tuesday, March 8, 2011

You only turn 19 once!

This race is known for bring out some strong numbers and riders not to mention the voice of USA cycling Dave Towle.

Well this race was honestly a last minute decision on my part. I was unsure of what to do on my birthday, But with a little convincing from my buddies I decided why not go to a bike race and try for the big WIN.

The race course for this year was a little different from years past, shortening the course by about half a mile I would say. This course was P shaped with a U-Turn at the far end of the course with about 700 meters to go.

No matter how big the race is there is always a mad dash to the start line. I waited a little to long after they called us up, but still managed a front row start with a little skill and sweet talking they let me in.

This was a 36 lap race so I was a little concerned when the pace was blistering right off the bat. I Rode around the group trying to stay relaxed as a small group of three slipped away early on with hopes that a team with numbers would bring it back later in the race.

About 10 lap into there was a reshuffle in the break, 2 of the same guys from earlier (The Clement Brothers) and Viatjoski and myself. We all seemed to be working well until Dave (the announcer) called out a $75 prime.The NOW MS rider (D. Clement) attacked, I covered it quickly as we railed it into the 180 degree turn. with 300 meters to go he unleashed a Savage sprint and I sat up and rode back into the field.

With about 20 laps to go the break had once again been re-shuffled. With the two brothers and A Teni-Duro kid dangling at about 20 seconds off the front. I sat on my hands buying my time with my fingers crossed that we would get organized soon.

But with 14 laps to go the group of 3 was still off the front hold strong at 20 second. Team Specialized began to get nervous and with 12 to go the went to the front and drilled it for about two laps. But that didn't seem to dent the lead. Coming out of the U-turn I could see everyone was tired and thought I would try and make it across.

I jumped and heard the crowd screaming as I rode by with my head down getting ready to enter the pain cave. I could see the group just making the turn ahead of me, and we were once again approaching the 180. I took it a little hot and rode all the way to the curb and made the junction. As we crossed the start finish line Dave Towle went crazy yelling out "TAPLEY HAS MADE THE JUNCTURE, WHAT A RIDE TO JUMP ACROSS ALONE!"

A few laps later a small group of 3 made connection with us. As we saw 2 to go I knew I had to save a little energy for the sprint yet still continue working so we didn't get caught. Coming across the line for the Bell lap I was sitting at the back just watching everyone knowing who could out sprint me. Going into the U-Turn Clement drilled it but nobody was gonna let him get away. I moved up to forth wheel and the sprint started. I just could come around anyone and took 4th place.

I was later told by a friend that Dave Towle Picked me for the win out of our 7 man break , So I say he jinxed me! haha

In the end we still had a 16 second gap on the chasing field. I was really happy With the result and showed that I am ready for Madera this coming weekend!


alex said...

nice blog... keep sharing..
continue to blog..

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JC said...

Good race! Good read and happy birthday!

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