Ephrata Recap

4 05 2011

Day 1 : Hammer Creek RR

Hammer Creek RR was a 9 mile circuit with lot of turns and narrow roads in Lancaster Co PA. The race was fast fast fast!  55 miles, avg speed 24 mph! The field consisted of 60+ riders from NY, PA, MD, VA and DC.  The MABRA teams included ABRT, District Velo, Raw Talent, GamJammies, and myself (Bike Doctor). The whole place smelled like cow poo!!

Tony Abarte (district velocity) got away with a Haymarket kid. I was in the break as well but decided to pull the plug when I realized I had 30 more miles to go in headwind.  I thought I made a big boo boo tactically when the break stayed away for most of the race. But we caught them on the final climb!  I kept my nose out of the wind and made the others chase! Finally sprinted for 5 th place (I would later find out that I was relegated to 17th b/c they did not have a “clear picture of me in the sprint”, I was on the R. of three riders and the sprint camera was on the left)!

Sunny Gill of Bike Doctor out of the start house for the stage 2 TT

Day 2 Mt. Pain TT & Epharta downtown Crit

The TT was a 8 mile effort with 6 flat rolling miles, and 2 miles of uphill finish. It was imperative to show up at the start line with a hot engine and ready produce an explosive effort. The split between the TT bikes and the road bike was 50/50!! Although I had a Zipp Sub 9 Power tap disc at my disposal (thanks to Cliff Rock), I decided to use  my 404s. The decision came after a little humming bird named Judd W. whispered in my ear that the last few miles of TT was a bit*h of a climb!!  404s were remarkably light yet aero.   Perhaps my only mistake was that I did not fully recon the course. I underestimated the final 200 yards, which had a monstrous uphill that cost me 30 secs and perhaps top 10. I exploded out of the start house and quickly caught my 30 sec man on the first climb. I knew the winning time from last year was 23:40s, I arrived at the bottom of the climb with 22:00 mins, and at 200 yards at 23:30 flat. But the last 200 yards the gradient was so tough that it cost me 30 extra secs to finish my TT. I finished 14th with a time of  24:45.

Best support team ever - Stephanie & Mr. Pluto

Going into the crit I was told the bad news that I had been relegated to 17th during the Road Race. My initial reaction was to quit and go home. Thanks to a wonderful support team (my girlfriend & Mr. Pluto, my dog) I put the disappointment behind me prepared for the crit.  I was 15th over all in GC after the TT. Determined to get Bike Doctor into top 10, I raced the crit knowing there was no margin for error.

Once again, an early break Tony Abarte & Haymarket got away. The speeds were touching 26 mph for a rolling crit, and the chase was full gas coming from the PA teams.  My goal was to ride in top 10 positions, and follow the counter attack if the break gets caught. We caught the break with 2 laps to go, but no counter attacks. On the last lap, things got super scary as riders were slowing, attacking, and slowing again.

With 3 corners to go, I again moved up into top 10, a move that would save my butt from crashing. As we approached the 3rd corner, the Haymarket dude slid out taking out 2 other guys. I missed his saddle by inches, but crash forced me to come to a track stand.  The finish was an uphill, followed by a left hander downhill sprint. I chased back up with 8 riders in the front, 4 of them had a substantial lead due to the crash (and were long gone).  I out sprinted the other 4 riders in the lead group on the climb to capture 5 th place in the crit.

Overall result 7th place for Bike Doctor in GC and $65 dollars cash award. Not a bad weekend!!

Ephrata crit - Chase led by PA teams

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