Monday, November 24, 2008

Nebraska Cyclocross Series - Lincoln Weekend Day 2

We had an eventfull night of no sleep at Motel 6 that resulted in a full refund. The plan to get up early and race the Masters 40+ went out the window. Apparently Chris Locke can sleep through anything. I can't, resulting in a couple calls to the front desk and an imprint of my shoe on the ceiling. At least it was warmer than yesterday and a backwards course was still super fun and "flowy". Most of yesterdays cast of charactors stuck around for day 2, expect for Chris Wallace and Shadd Shreiner. The backwards course made for a longer paved start, with a kick into the wind right at the end before hitting the grass. Once onto the grass it was a series of short but steep climbs (that we came down yesterday) before the run-up. They altered the approach to the run-up to keep guys from riding up it. No way me and my 42*26 were going to make it anyway, but they added a little chicane at the bottom to really mess up most guys. After a little comic relief with a false start, we were off and sprinting. I tucked in behind Joe Smaltz and Bill Stolte. For the next lap or 2 , sat on the back of Joe and Bill. Bill would ride off and Joe would ease up (teammates just playing around), so I'd sit behind Joe, then it would come together and Joe would take off so i'd sit on Bill (this was only delaying the eneviteble obviously) . One time through the barriers, Nate Woodman bunny hopped them so fast that he passed both me and Bill in the process and went straight onto Joe's wheel. One back onto the long paved section. Bill was done messing around and sprinted by me up to Joe and the 2 Trek boys were off and running. I purposely didn't react to this move and eased up for Troy Krause and Darren Shlake. This course sucked if you were by yourself. Me, Troy, and Darren rode together for a couple laps, but Darren was riding the run-up and causing some major grief for me and Troy.

A one second gap at the top would become a 2 or 3 second gap once we shot down the short single-track chute and back out into the flatter 2nd half of the course. We managed to close it down once or maybe twice but the elastic finally snapped and Darren was off and running solo in 3rd. Me and Troy stayed together for the last 1/2 of the race. Nate Woodman was behind us about 20 seconds or so and was doing a great job of holding the same gap lap after lap even with me and Troy sharing the work. We were still together on the bell lap and into the barriers for the last time. I needed to get over the barries first so I popped into the lead right before them. I think I got clipped in about 1 second faster than Troy and drilled it. I got to the short paved finish straight with just a second or 2 gap but just enough to avoid having him on my wheel for a sprint. 4th place and stoked again.