Well today wasn't much different than any other road race out there. There were hills, flats, wind, and a lot of pain! We started out with 36 riders. The weather was nice and at this point I have gotten used to riding/racing in the wind and it has become a nonissue. Climbing for some reason has become my foe for sure. I was in this race for all of about 5 miles. Just about then is when the road pitched up for about a mile and half and I went from pulling the field to watching those freaks in the front shatter the field. I dangled off the back for about half the climb and then saw them go over the crest and lost some motivation to try and bury myself with 65 miles to go. I figured the top was a bunch of rollers and wind so I could organize a group and start the chase. I am, at this point, so used to organizing chases that I am half decent at motivating people to work with me and stay the course when they have pulled the plug a dozen times in their head all ready. There is one thing that stands out about this race. I never quit or DNF'd in my head. I had no misconception about staying with them on that climb. I knew those skinny bastards would pin it on that climb, I just never figured they'd go so well on the flats and wind.
I could see groups in front of me organizing and new I had to catch them before it was one against many. I caught a Team O guy that was going well and we worked our selfs into a frenzy somewhere between ouch and passing out. We were closing in on a few of his guys and I thought we might have a chance to do better if some of his guys would join in. We picked up two of his guys and we worked our way through the shrapnel. as we moved through the distruction no one was willing to work. They had all given up and we(4) weren't even half way through the race. As we(4) closed in on a pretty big group I tried to motivate them into racing but the 6 or 8 of them had already pulled the cord and were just cruising back to the finish to dnf. Their negativity vortex sucked one our riders in. Then we were (3) again. When we approached the feed I knew I was in trouble we weren't half way through and I was half way through my liquids. I was trying to be good at staying up on my nutrition but I had only brought two bottles and I didn't have a neutral feed.
We dropped off the long descent, which was wide open, no breaks needed. We completed our first lap and we had picked up two more guys but they had decided drop out anyway and then we were 3. When we passed the finish line for the first time Candi said that were chasing 17 13min up the road. 13 min? F me! I am out of shape. I was guessing that was a lead group and chase 1 we were chase 2. Ouch. The guys I was with really wanted to push on and so did I. I came all this way to race and that's what I was going to do. I was seriously out of liquids by the time we road onto the first of two laps on the small circuit and cramping slightly. I was begging,and pleading for water from the Team O guys who had a feed. I was in a world of hurt by the second lap and started to cramp so bad that I had to get off my bike and stretch. I had never done that before. I'll be damned if I was going to push my bike. I caught up with the guys I was determined to finish with and we cruised across the finish line. I got 15th out of 36 starters and exactly half of our field DNF'd. It was a tough day on the bike for sure but isn't that bike racing?