posted by Sam Rosenholtz on Thu, 2012-05-10 18:11
I felt like this was my first race ever. I was so excited, I couldn't sleep the night before. We showed up in usual GLV fashion: Late. Well, when I say we, I mean everyone else. I couldn't wait to get going so I showed up 2 hours early... MIke got things started by crushing humans in the 3-4 and taking home a top 10 in his first outing... then he sacked up and raced the 1/2/3. Not quite sure how, judging by how freaking thrashed I am after the single race I did.
We're gonna skip to the good bit.
It was a fairly active race, but nothing too unexpected... Three guys scurry off the front, we give them a 40 second gap, someone drags it back. This happened two or three times. I knew with the crazy headwind down the backstretch that it would be hard to stay away.
Cut to the last attempt.
There we two guys up the road and out of sight. They were up to a minute at one point with 7 to go... So I had resigned the fact that I would be sprinting for 3rd. I started to set my sights up the road and move up with AJ, when people started getting itchy and attacking off the front. This strung the whole field out and, eventually, brought those two suckers back. I honestly don't know they were out there that long. Every time I was in the wind on the backstretch I felt like someone was holding onto my jersey!
Once we had them in sight, it was around 2 to go. Aj had, at this point, done exactly what I needed him to do, and gone to the front. He pushed the pace, and made sure and late attempts remained futile. There were many, and each time, he steadily dragged them back into the fold, crushing all hope for a Cancellara-esqe win.
I knew that he'd be spent for the sprint, so on the bell lap, when he got a little swarmed, (still hung on for a top 20!!), I thanked him, and continued on my way up the field. I was not about to let all that work go to waste. There was a little argy-bargy coming around the corner, so my main goals were two-fold:
It was fairly easy to move up on the outside all day, so I made sure I protected my left and kept making my way to the front. Finally, a two man lead-out arrived at the pointy end of the field, and I was now, somehow third wheel with 300 to go! That, as you may know, is sort of my in wheelhouse. AJ told me afterwards that when he saw where I was, he knew I had it. That made me pretty happy.
The man in first wheel started to fade and slow, but his sprinter didn't make a move, we were suddenly down to around 25mph. No Bueno. I could feel the field's breath on my neck and knew I had to open it up.
Jeremy POWers says: "When in doubt. Lead it out." So. I went. Realllllly early. I was instantly worried that I was not gonna make it. We're talking like 45 second dead sprint, uphill, in the wind, on fire, backwards... But as my legs started to explode, I looked behind me, and saw no one.
I KNOW RIGHT!?
So now we're in the Leaders Jersey... Which means I will be defending OUR leaders jersey until it is ripped from my cold dead hands. Get pumped.