San Dimas Stage Race

31 Mar

I’m at 30,000 plus feet in the air right now, heading back to Sarasota, FL. This was a bit of whirlwind trip to California for the San Dimas stage race. I am so grateful to my Lupus Racing Team for giving us the opportunity to come out to the race and for all of the support. My teammates, Winston, Jimmy, and Oliver came out for the race as well.

My Aunt was in town visiting before the race and left a little good luck charm for me.

Going to California

Going to California

The weather was great the whole week. Always a little cooler than the southeast, but a nice break from the heat. We flew into LAX and had host housing with Melissa and her husband, David. A huge thanks to them for opening their home to all of us.

Made It!

Made It!

Always a Welcome Sight

Always a Welcome Sight

After flying in on Wednesday, Jimmy and I took a nice easy spin around the Sunset Loop circuit from the Redlands race. It was nice to see the course again in a much calmer setting. Thursday was the GMR TT recon day. We pre-drove, and then pre-rode the course to get the feeling for the climb again. We had the rental van jam packed the whole week.

GMR Recon

GMR Recon

GMR View

GMR View

Onto the racing. I had a good ride in the uphill TT and finished 36th. A few spots lower than the last year, but still solid.

TT Pain Face

TT Pain Face

The road race was significantly less eventful than the previous year, however the first few laps were still pretty hairy. It’s always odd how the field is coned off to one lane for about 2 or 3 miles. The field always seems too big for the course and that’s what makes things dicey. The field split and came back together a few times through the race, but on the final lap, a break of 10 riders got clear on the final climb. They finished ahead of my group of around 30 riders and the field came in a short time after. This moved me up to 34th on GC. Not a huge jump, but consistent results.

Rear Tire Post Road Race

Rear Tire Post Road Race

I locked up the rear tire in one of the incidents in the first few laps of the road race, and couldn’t get a spare wheel before the crit. I guess this is the price you pay for traveling with tubulars. Needless to say, I didn’t have all that much confidence in my rear tire, so I rode the crit a bit gingerly. It was a wide open, six turn, flowing course which I floated to a field finish. I was same time as the group and moved up another spot on GC to finish the race at 33rd overall. Not too bad of a showing for the first big race of the season. After the race, we got to enjoy the rest of the evening in Redlands. Burritos, a beer, and some Oreos were the rewards for completing the stage race.

I’m now setting my sights on the Joe Martin stage race with the team. It will be another attempt at a tough uphill time trial, and another chance to race with the big teams.

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