Written by Beau:
This past weekend’s FLC Squawker Road Classic was a great introduction to racing as part of a team. I had a blast witnessing what a positive impact a unified goal can have in this sports experience and it was a real pleasure to have four of us in the Men’s IV/V field. My legs were slow to respond in the TT and I suffered my way to a 6th place finish before feeling 2x as strong on the way back from the finish to the car;) Being new to the sport and lacking TT experience Trey impressed with a solid top 10 finish.
The crit was typically fast for the .5 mile 6 turn circuit that includes a punchy hill and descent proceeding the turn into the finishing straight. I was thrilled to be a part of the lead group that lapped the majority of the field and to witness James ride a tactful race culminating in an impressive sprint to 2nd as I barely hung onto the lead pack to finish in 8th. Lance was just behind tying for 12th. We celebrated the day with an incredible meal put on by Charlotte and James that featured some delicious Colavita pasta and two amazing homemade sauces. It was a real treat to see so many of the team’s faces and check out the new Castelli Kits.
Not really sure how the legs would respond to a full weekend of racing, but feeling jumpy from the team feast, I decided to just go for it in the road race and find out what the legs thought latter; falling on my birthday I think Trey felt obliged to entertain me. We shot off the front less than a ¼ mile into the race and James and Lance did a fantastic job of disrupting early efforts to chase us down which allowed us to gain nearly a minute by the bottom of the climb on the first lap. Just as the climb eventually took its toll on us after a fast start it worked to separate the field and produce a small chase group that was closing in on Trey and I by our 2nd time up it. Seeing the writing on the wall we sat up, refueled and regained smooth form in time to jump in with the new lead group; having James there made it easy for us to do so. The last two laps were a little jumpy as riders acted on the urge to whittle things down. The penultimate climb left just James at the front with two others. I refused to give up on the idea of catching them and was left solo in between the lead and the next group behind. I of course never got any closer being alone in the wind but managed to hold my own out there and finish 4th behind James’ second podium finish of the weekend. As Trey was in the group behind me he did not pull in the chase efforts to catch his own teammates and proved further the gentleman near the line by by not contesting 5th with the rider who had chased; Trey took 6th just behind the “Angry Catfish” rider out of Minneapolis who was also racing on his birthday.
It was a fine way to spend a birthday weekend and I am grateful to do so with such a great team. I look forward to the coming season!
Next up CMU’s Maverick Classic: