Sunday, March 7, 2010


The twenty ten road race season began today at Mason Lake.  Some call it the world championships and others call it little more than a training ride. For me, this was vindication. After a tough 2009 season where I had my ass handed to me in the pro/1/2 field I wanted to reset the expectation for myself with a solid placing today.

The course is 72 miles aggregated by six 12 mile loops on good pavement and chip seal. On the backside there is a nasty headwind where breaks will typical set up.  The remainder of the course rolls and winds through tall timber allowing for even a 30 second gap to disappear.

Typically the weather at Mason consists of cold pissing rain and with a new system moving in overnight we expected a repeat today. Fortunately, the rains held off until after our race and temperatures stayed around 50 degrees for most of the afternoon.

At 1pm we started our neutral rollout up until we took a right turn and began to ease into the throttle. I was near the back of the pack and wanted to work my way up so I didn't get caught with my shorts down on the opening move. Moving up after only a few miles into the race some would consider premature since we still had seventy miles to go. But if there is one thing I have learned in bike racing it is this: expect the unexpected.

At mile five of seventy two I was full throttle and driving a break alongside Fleischhauer and Richter of HSP, and Hitchcock of Garage.  Soon we were joined by McKissick of Lenovo and Stangeland of Keller Rohrback. We had a large gap that increased to two minutes after one lap. We were flying and I was wondering when this onslaught was going to ease up. I was on the rivet. After two laps I was asking myself the same question. By the third lap we had a three minute lead on the pack and it appeared that we were going to stay away. My legs were beginning to sieze up and I increased the cadence to lessen the load but it was two laps too late - I was fried and any attacks out of this group would likely put my tail between my legs.

Suffering in the break.
It was only after the fourth lap that we eased up on the pace, which in hindsight is where we went wrong. On the backstretch McKissick attacked the break while I was on the back and a gap formed putting me back into the wind and I couldn't find a wheel. So I transitioned from the winning break to a dark desolate place. Stuck between the break and the pack it has the feel of Siberia without the threat of polar bears. It only took the pack a half lap to catch me and I was ashen, beaten, and silent.

I finished in the pack today after 50+ miles in what would be the winning albeit fractured break (Ian soloed in for the win after dropping Stangeland and Richter took third). While I didn't podium today I did learn a couple things today that were well worth the effort:
  1. Luck favors the prepared.
  2. I can finally swing the axe.


  1. Great write up D. Way to stick your nose in the break. Throwin' DOWN baby!

  2. Strong work. Swinging the axe with the big dogs! Dig the new blog...


  3. D- great showing and who knew you had a way with words! The content alone is compelling but the style of writing is wonderfully descriptive. A renaissance man I say!