You know what they say, "... a day late and a dollar short." I guess this makes me seven days late and seven dollars short... Here is the final report from superweek. Just a week late.
I've dropped back to reality, my temporary full time job of cyclist is over for the season. It's great to get away for two whole weeks of the summer and only worry about riding my bike and what I'm going to eat. If only that could be my entire life, I hope that day is in my future.
For those of you that don't know, I've officially reached "BALLER" status since the start of my adventures at SupwerWeek.(click on my picture if you don't understand) I've had a lot of success over the past two weeks, just missing the overall podium by 3 points.
The last two days I was accompanied by my mom on the trip. She's a great supporter and knows when I just need her to get out of the way and let me do my thing. On the second to last day I had my two great teammates JBell and StreetPlaya by my side.
I had one goal on this second to last day, get in a break and make it stick. Let's cut to the chase, it didn't happen. I was in sixth place overall and a break may have secured a podium finish for me. Not only did I not get in a break after a failed first attempt, I was tailgunnin' it all day. Jesse was on the front driving the pace, this course suited him well and he was just smashing it. Little did he know, I was on the back suffering a bit. It came down to a group sprint and though I didn't win it, I came in for a fourth place. I wasn't positioned well and it was a tricky snaking finish stretch. Somehow I managed to get around though and finish well.
Bill got pulled after being lapped with just a few laps to go and Jesse flatted and continued to ride the last two laps with the technical difficulty, whether it was unnoticed or to secure a finish I'm not sure. The results of the day launched me into fourth place overall, just seven points from third and fourteen points from second. I needed to finish 6th the final day to even think about a podium.
So the final day was slightly ceremonial and filled with a lot of fun and drama brought to you by the Blue, White, and Orange squad, the team I've often said I'm not a large fan of without dropping their name again. We started the race with a COMPLETELY neutral first lap, with the first few top GC contenders receiving champagne glasses on the back stretch and toasting across the line before the fun began. Some hooligan from the aforementioned team thought he'd be cool during this lap and sprint away from us, even though the pace car had a flashing yellow light for "neutral." Idiot. Oh well, we all yelled at him, put him in his place and basked in our glory for one lap and then let things begin.
Since there was a close battle for the podium, I had my guys marked and any attack they put in I matched it, knowing I'd have the kick at the finish to do well in the sprint. I chased down my marked man three or more times during breakaway attempts. Each time he realized what I had done, let up and we drifted back. He obviously learned his lesson and sat in the rest of the day, I wasn't letting just him get away.
A breakaway did manage to get away and I found myself on the front doing some work. I still wanted a victory and I wasn't gonna let anyone just walk away with it. ISCorp tried to block, and I mean BLOCK, on the front but I yelled and gave them some words of encouragement to make them pull through so others could do the work. It worked and I didn't see them on the front anymore the rest of the day. That made me happy, just a little.
The last two laps had to be the fastest laps in a Cat 3 race that I've ever experienced. EVER. It was really cool, and I really enjoyed the chance to test my handling skills and my ability to move around the group at those speeds. I impressed myself and after a 10th place finish to round things out at Superweek for, sadly, a fourth place overall I am proud to announce that I have applied for my Cat 2 upgrade and will hopefully be racing the Glencoe Grand Prix and Cherry Roubaix as well as possibly the Gateway Cup in Missouri at the start of September to get a feel for what things will be like with the big boys.
I'm very excited, and anxious, with a side of nerves for the upgrade. I'm confident that I will do well, but I am mentally ready for a slight bit of a rude awakening. I know it will be tough and I'm going to do my best. Having my team, my girlfriend and my family behind me as well as a few friends is a great help. I'm anxious to let you all know if I get my upgrade and can't wait to test my abilities!