Race number three, in Grafton, was the only USA Crits series race of T.O.A.D. . The USA crit series races are more valuable then the TOAD races, so money went 30 deep, the field was stronger, and more bad-assery would ensue. Steve, Logan, Dan and I all spent the first 35 minutes going ape-loco like normal, and then all got tired like normal right about the time when the winning break went away. But luckily, my homie Clay from Tazzy won out of the break. And if I can't win, or my teammates can't win, it might as well be someone cool that you like, right?
The positioning plan for this day was to slowly make my way up, and show up at the front with around 2 to go instead of 5,6 to go like in the races in the past. My thinking is that by showing up later, you avoid all the fighting and save some energy not having to fight for wheels for several laps at a time. Well, it took me longer then expected to get to the front, but thanks to Joe Holmes yelling "POSITIONING" every lap, I was able to wake up and eventually move into the right place. Getting the bell I was coming up the side around ten back and then cornered my way into 5th wheel. Then I promptly almost ran into the follow car that had stopped to look after riders who had crashed the lap before. Positioning lost. However, I still sprinted for 19th on the day, which was 13th in the bunch sprint.
I like this sequence of pictures because I had just bridged up to the Cat and one other guy. Went to the front right away because I was going faster and didn't want to brake, and then got yelled at.
|Later, attacking all over my teammates|
Unfortunately, my location of hanging out was quite hectic, and I was forced to go into the pit two times in the first half an hour of the race. Fast forward to 4 laps to go. I find myself near the front as Daniel Hollaway (Kelly Benefit Strategies) is attacking to try and win the big preme of the night. He wins the preme, crosses the line solo with 3 to go with a gap. I am sitting 4th wheel. We catch him on the back side of the course with 2.5 to go and TWO of his teammates counter, and get a gap. Coming down the homestraightaway they have a pretty significant gap and are seeing two-to-go.
|Making the bridge with 2 to go. The other guy didn't get up there|
|Getting the bell|
And for anyone following closely, Steve and I decided to set our pool tournament to be first person to win 15 games. I was up 14 games to 11, and true to my poor tactics, went and put the black ball in the pocket when I wasn't supposed to 4 games in a row, therefore losing the tournament. I believe that out of 15 games, Steve won 4 by himself, and I helped him in all the other ones. I guess I won't pursue a career in conning people at pool-halls.Tweet