Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lodi Crit Masters 123

By Dr. Tom
Being my hometown race I was looking forward to this one and kinda wanted to do something here. Of course once I got up to the line I wasn't so sure again. The course was kinda cool, 3/4th a block to a left hander, then around the block to the right, then a left, 1 block right 2 blocks right 1 block right 2 blocks. kinda like hanford except shorter. good money 1000 bucks 20 deep ( the p1,2 had 3000 - rob evans was 2nd and got 500 bucks).

luckily for bay area folks it wasn't too hot or windy by lodi standards. I started at the back so I could start off not too hard. The pace was quick from the gun but I didn't think it was too bad. What I did notice was that it was sorta hard to move up except for the one 2 block stretch on the backside. After about 15 minutes there was a lull from the attacks so I went and got clear. Peter Allen and some dude named Max from whole foods came with and having Peter there I felt pretty good. Alas Peter didn't want to do anything so for the next couple of laps Max and I worked and I tried to coerce Peter into working. We then got caught by a few others including Doug Hall and a Morgan Stanley, but that was it and we came back to the field.

A bit later a Safeway and Morgan Stanley guy got away and that was pretty much the race. There were a couple of guys here and there that would try to pull but those two guys stayed about 15 sec in front. At about 25 minutes I figured I could try to get across and I would just jump into the first turn and use that around the block section to get away. I jumped just before the start finish right as they rang the bell for a field prime - bad luck. Well I had a gap into the first turn and figured that maybe the field would figure I was going to get the prime and just let me go. But that wasn't the case and those guys kept chasing so I kept the power on for the rest of the lap and got the prime. I kept going but started getting caught by a few guys at a time. Towards the end of the 50 min race a Lombardy guy bridged and then Doug Hall. That was a little annoying.

I was sorta thinking about bagging it but then remembered they were paying 4 deep. So on the bell lap I started moving up from mid to back pack. A few spots on the inside of turn one, a couple more on the outside of 2 and 3. Another couple through 5. A good push on the backstretch got me to 7th before the last two turns, held position. Backed off through the last turn to avoid any overexuberance and subsequent crashes, then realized I needed to sprint, but I didn't catch anyone but one guy passed me. So, 12th over all I felt pretty good about the race but I am starting to realize I can prob do a bit better if I would just commit a little to the finishes. Oh well. I think next year we should try to field a team for this race as the cash is good, pays deep and a good team can definitely control the race with all the turns.

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