Thursday, June 22, 2006

Crashing Sucks!

Well, on Tuesday we headed to a race about 20k from the house. We drove there, just because it was a 156krace. It basically was a glorified kermis becuase it was 13 laps of a 12k circuit. The course was tricky with lots of turns and over 190 starters. We were tipped off that it was going to be splintered from the go, so we started in the front. As the gun went off, the pace was in fact blistering. I was at the front and throwing down as hard as I could. Just following everything and staying top 10 at all times. After about 10 minutes, I jumped with a group of 5 that looked promising. We went through an "S" bend turn, and on the way out of it I lost traction with my front wheel. In an instant I hit the pavement and slid into a ditch. An imediately numbness took over my left shoulder when I realized I couldn't move it. I almost couldn't breath. I laid there in the ditch until the entire field came by. When I finally sat up, "Pop," my shoulder went back into place. Wow, that was scary. My race was over. I stood up to check out my bike. It was fine. I hoped back on and limped it back to the feed zone. I had some road rash on my hip barely allowing me to pedal. It hurt with every pedal stroke.
It was short day for me, and most of the team had not such good luck either. Luckily I was the only one to crash, but Brandon McKeever was the only one to survive past 50k, making it until 3 laps to go when his group was pulled.
My shoulder is fine now, but it was pretty sore that night and the next day. Het Volk for amateurs is on the menu for me this weekend, so that will be cool. Then maybe a trip down to Spain for a stage race next week.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Bertem 1.12

Bertem 1.12
June 18, 2006

Well, this Sunday was the going to be one of the hottest days yet. With my srm reading 35 degrees Celsius, it was a scorcher. Matt Crane, John Devine, Pat McGlynn, Mike Wolf and I were all ready to go for the 147k race. With the heat we knew it was going to be hard, not to mention the 180 Belgians all looking to rip our legs off.

Devine and I had different ideas though, attacking after 2k and getting into a four person break with our good friend Chris (who most of the time acts as a stand in director when Noel is gone) and one other guy. We drove the break until we had about a minute then started to just cruise. Over the first climb, Devine crushed the mountain sprint and took the prime. We were soon accompanied by a group of 8-10 riders, including Matt Crane. We were now sitting pretty and everyone was rolling through.

Unfortunately, the shattered peloton of maybe 40 riders now were almost on us. I covered an attack with 7 other riders. With Devine and Crane in the group just behind, it was looking good for us. My group was still away coming into the finishing circuits, with almost two minutes on the next chasing group. That group included Devine so it was looking really good. Then there was an attack from a rider and it shattered our break. It formed two groups, one with 5 riders up the road, and another with myself and 4 other guys. The 5 riders stayed away and we were just pulling through to stay away. I finished the day 8th place, my legs aching from the long day in the sun. Devine came in winning the uphill sprint from his group for 12th. Crane was cramping due to the lack of water and had to pull out with 2 laps to go in the circuits. Wolf and McGlynn finished in the peloton, both finishing inside the top 40. We also took 3rd in the team classification, so it was pretty good day for us today. After the hot day, we will all be looking to re-hydrate for the race this upcoming Tuesday.