I thought that this weekend I would be going to church but Dad had told me we could go out to see Grandpa and Grandma. They live in Maryland, and on the way home we could go to a bike race or two. I looked up the race and I knew there would be a bunch of racers there. Meridith GPOA had 12 riders and Rite Aid Pro cycling team was also there with 3 guys. Kelly Benefits Pro Team was also there as well as a couple other Pros I had no idea would be there as well. Dad took a pic of Stubna all smiles of course, that whole team is great.
Last year Carney won the race so I guess it was good to go and get beat up a little. I had a great start and stayed with every move I thought would work. I felt better than I had all year and I knew today I could do anything I wanted, so I did. No Primes were given out all day even though they said they would, but they never said anything once we got at the line to start. We had 60 starters and they dropped fast with a nice hill in the course, which was fine with me.
God really blessed my legs today everything was going perfect for me. Then with 18 miles or laps to go Tom Soliday attacks right after all the big boys had been in the break that I just worked in. I didn't know who this rider was until I jumped up to him solo. While we were in the break that I didn't feel too comfortable being in after 3 laps, they said look at Soliday and Grimm they have a 24 second gap. Soliday was hammering and I started to feel a little tired. I told Tom I was done working and he was ok with it, I am pretty sure he knew I was hurting.
Well there we are in front of the pack by 5 seconds hoping someone would join us, but no go. I then thought to myself I am feeling pretty good I think I will pull as hard as I can for a lap. We put 10 seconds on them in one lap with 6 to go. As I went around the corner of the first turn I pulled over to fast and to hard and clipped my pedal hard enough to roll my tubular off the rim. Couldn't get the wheel changed quick enough to jump in with Soliday so now I am back with the field and we have 5 to go.
I rested the whole time as they caught Soliday and now it was game time. The first person in the last turn wins. 2 laps to go and I am sitting on the lead out man for Rite Aid Pro cycling team. He had long blond hair sticking out of his helmet whoever that is. He took off so fast a had about 2 bike length gaps between us. I looked back to see what would happen and nothing. I knew I would catch him fast and I was right. When we got through the last turn he gave it everything he had and I was sitting down still and I don't know why I didn't go around him but 3 others did and 2 were his teammates. Stephan won the race and his teammate took himself out of the race, as well as Jared and I. I guess Rite Aid wanted to be greedy or something cause at the last 2nd the so called Pro cut off Jared into the turn and we had to hit our breaks. I felt fine going into the turn and I think I went faster through that same turn when I caught Tom for our break.
You can see in the video we slowed down after the pack started to. I almost made it through the turn and it would have been so nice, but it just wasn't meant to be. I keep telling my self maybe next time but now I have to wait till next year. I tore up my left arm real good but my hip is good already. The worst part is the bruised ribs which hurt worse after I was applying pressure to them in the car on the way home. I heard and felt something pop while pushing on them, and then it hurt worse after doing it. It doesn't hurt that bad anymore but will make sure if it gets worse to check with the Doc.
Friday, September 21, 2007
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
Saturday, September 15, 2007
Caylin was asking me why are you outside in the rain?
What she wanted to say was get inside before you catch a cold.
Thank you OCA!
Well it rained again for another Road Race which was fine by me. Well not really, the downhill section of the course had chip and seal on it so it tore up a lot of tires. Dad put brand new tubulars on his wheels and let me race on them for Grand Rapids. They worked great and thought I would have problems with the track racing slick on the front in all those turns but the Lord kept me upright.
Well with the rain and only a few turns the race would not be decided in the turns. I did take it very easy in them though. Brent started the pace strong for the first several miles then a break got away with my teammate Bob Martin up the road. I knew he would be great in the break away but then he had a broken seat post so he had to DNF. I don't recall to much of the race after that I was so tired from my trip the day before. All I know is I tried hard to work in the breaks and make sure I would be able to try and win this race. I felt good about that until I had a flat tire going up the hill before 2 laps to go. I changed the flat before Steels Corner so I would have the downhill to chase back on. Sorry the van blocked everyones way and slowed everyone down. I heard the front group got slowed down as well. We had 7 guys still strong in the chase group so there was no way they were gone for good. I didn't know how Dave was feeling but I was not feeling good after I stopped out of the break to change my rear tire. As the chase group of Albers and my Teammate Dave went by I knew it would hurt to get back on.
As soon as I got back on I rested for the rest of the downhill and then we hit the uphill section. I looked behind me to see if Dave was still there and he was so I worked a little knowing I was cooked. Once we caught the break no one did anything till the 2nd to last roller which was great for me and my teammate Dave. Here is the video showing Dave won with ease. Great Job Dave!
Thank you Lord for the great day and my family there watching and supporting me in the rain. You blessed me once again and protected me from crashing. You have also provided me a great sponsor in that I will do your will so that more will come to know you as I do. May my actions in all that I do reflect you Lord.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Well the next game was against the best team in the league. I knew after one game our guys were just getting warmed up and the fire was lit. We scored 5 in the first 5 in the second and then they scored 10 in one inning with no errors. 8 runs with two outs, very impressive. It still didn't phase us. We kept tacking on runs here and there. It came down to the last inning we batted first and we scored 3 runs and had 3 men on when I came to the plate. So we were ahead by 6 and knew we needed to keep going. I was getting tired of Dex placing the ball just right so I would have to run. The last couple of times I held him up and he gave me some sympathy. Well the last time I came to bat we had 3 on like I wrote and I had hit the ball hard two times in a row my last two at bats and I was thinking about Dex hitting behind me again. I said "God please hit the ball over the fence cause if I have to run one more time I am going to cry. God gave me the strength to hit my 2nd Homerun of the year and the other team couldn't come back to win after we scored more than 6 runs that inning.
Thank you Jesus I didn't cry or do a face plant in front of everyone, fun game and great guys.
Todays race was going to be hard. Very tuff racers and my third day in a row compared to other racers just being there second day. Well my plan was to sit in the whole race and go for the sprint. My how things change so fast. I think it was the 3rd lap and I was in a break with Steven Howard again. We kept it rolling for about 2 laps before Paul bridged up. Then we kept growing the lead each lap. The course was perfect for me even though it had two hills with 180 degree turns on it. I felt pretty good considering my legs hurt the whole race and never let up. They were burning so bad they didn't have time to cramp up. Well as we were coming up to the field to lap them after 1 hr and 15 of riding Paul lapped the field and Steven and I had nothing left. Steven got DQ'd because he drafted his teammate and I BONKED BAD. Rish and Fisher saw me bonk once before and this time I didn't let it go that far cause I didn't have time. With 6 laps to go Steven dropped me quickly. One min I was fine the next second BAM!!!!
I was going 3 miles per hour instead of 24 mph. It took 4 laps for the field to lap me and when they did I could hardly breathe and I was using a hay bail to push myself up the hill. I got to the point where I could see nothing for a couple of seconds and the EMS guy said I was gaging but I don't remember a thing. I do recall my wife asking me if I was ok and I couldn't say no until I caught my breath 5 mins later. Then my little girl said "Daddy are you ok" as I am laying on the ground not moving at all. I opened my eyes and said "yes Daddy will be just fine as soon as I get some sugar.... I Love you Caylin." Then she said " I Love You Mr. Incredible" she got that off of the movie. Caylin is the Best!
So two days in a row and out of the winning breaks. That hurts bad, real bad! Today was my fault though. I had 3 waters but no Gu to eat or anything. My breakfast was light and was 5 hrs before the race and I had one Banana 1 hr before it was time to race. I had plenty to drink and felt full the whole race but I had to go pee 3 times in the last 30 mins before the race started.
That's why you never say NEVER cause sometimes you forget. Well this reminded me again NEVER to do that again. I put myself in bad shape for next weekend too.
Pro's called to the line on the smooth section of bricks.
Well after 3 days of rest my legs have felt better so my plan was to sit in as much as possible. Today was the first race Becky and Caylin didn''t go because it would have been to hard on Caylin to travel 12 hrs in the car and 4 hrs at the race. Dad had his new camera which is totally awesome! You all will enjoy looking at pics and videos thanks to my Dad providing those as well as teaching me how to put them on my website, Thanks Dad.
So we get there after Dad and I talk about what I should do and he is helping me by telling me what to eat and when to eat it. I wish I could remember everything before races, so thanks to my Dad this race was great till the start then it was up to me to do it. Legs felt ok before the race I wish it would have been one day later but I had fun. Here is how it unfolded:
Rock racing didn't show up but everyone else did that they said would show up. http://www.priorityhealthclassic.com/ You can find the results there and the racers that showed up but like I said Rock Racing Pro Team was not there. Everyone else was, which wasn't to many Pro racers but enough. Health Net had there strongest Crit monsters Kirk, Karl, and Pipp. Jittery Joes had three there as well. Priority Health had 16 riders but I think only 10 finished. They called the whole team to the line and all the big Dogs even a Discovery Channel/ Marco Polo rider, Bradley White, who eneded up beating everyone up. Well he didn't win the big prize in the end but he won everything else, other than the one prime he gave to Pipp.
The first 25 laps were for prime points, every five laps. So the first four cross the line get points. 5,3,2,1 Bradley White took 23 points total and the next rider had 9 points then it was a mess. I took 2nd in the first one and 3rd in the 2nd giving me 5 points. So I thought, well they had # 54 down instead of #24 for the 2nd round of points and I asked the #54 rider if he got any points and he said no not that I was aware of. So I was glad I asked about it cause that tied me for 5th in the points with Kirk O'Bee the current and 2 time US Pro Crit Champ. Since #54 had no idea they said well there is one prime we didn't give out and we will give it to you. I guess it never hurts to ask. Maybe I was wrong and I got 5th instead but who knows. I thought I didn't have anywhere close to the points but since Bradley White took them all That gave the rest a chance for more money. White won $1000 for that as well as 3 hundred dollar primes as my Dad said he won and was working every break and blowing people up so bad they quit. The big break was the 7 man break. The seven had 3 Priority Health riders, 1 Jittery Joe rider, 2 Health Net, and Bradley White.
Well White and Pipp took off and Priority Health had to chase since no one else would work. After 5 laps of trying they quit and waited for the field to help out. Out of 60 that started we had 28 finishers and 10 were Priority Health. They pulled Pipp and Bradley back with ease I was so glad to see them at the front since I missed the break after I blew myself up on the 15th lap of the race going for the points prime. I sat in the rest of the race as well as Karl Menzies and all 3 Jittery Joe riders Dad siad those guys didn't do any work and I knew they didn't as well.
Well Pipp blew up or Bonked or quit 3 laps after White let Pipp win a $100 prime. So when that happened the group was 13 seconds ahead of us. Pipp was sitting still when I passed him and Bradley White was pulling away and 3 laps later he had a 20 second lead on us. Priority Health caught him and the field sprint was in full effect now. The pace seemed to get faster, but I only noticed by looking at my gears I think we were in the 53 /12 most of the last 5 laps and I was sitting pretty just like the National Crit. Today I wasn't going to Bonk no way. This was the first race I didn't do any work in since the National Crit. How do I beat all three Jittery Joes and Karl Menzies cause Kirk O'Bee just got caught with a small group with Jake Rytelski(sp) in it so bye bye to both of them as well.
Bradley White was the main concern still but I should have chose Karl instead. With two laps to go and 2 wheels behind Karl I was fine with that even though 4 Priority Health riders were on the front towing Karl. The last lap was a nightmare I got passed a bunch and had lots of power to work with. At 35 + mph I passed a couple of riders and in the turns I passed a few more then I had a chance for Karl's wheel or an opening maybe. I chose the open rode on the outside with 2 turns to go. Bradley had blocked my opening and I had to go around him after the others had jumped with Karl forcing me to try and make up ground in the last 300 meters with a single file line due to the 3 turns in less than 150 meters and than a brick downhill to the finish the last 150 meters. I got pushed outside a little too much and scraped my pedal on the curb losing 3 places but not going down was so rewarding. I looked back to see how many more were going to beat me but there seemed to be a gap after White. He must have got pushed out or was so worn out from his efforts he couldn't do any more. I almost closed the gap as well as White did behind me so it must not affected anyone else because the gaps got bigger after that. If you look for my yellow water bottles you can pick me out. Kirk O'Bee comes across before the white car.
Sunday, September 09, 2007
Early, on maybe the third lap I went from the back to the front by winning a $100 prime. Then after that I saw 4 riders out front two laps later I said "man those guys are flying." I moved up and got a better look. I saw Paul Martin's stars and stripes jersey and noticed Kirk Albers moving to the front rapidly. Then I saw Andy Clarke moving up fast so I jumped on his wheel and as Andy caught the chase group I took off to the break thanks to Kirk not chasing me down. It took me 3/4 of a mile to catch them, but only a 1/4 of a mile to pull through. I should have taken a long break when I caught the other four riders.
I felt good early and they rang the bell for another $100 prime that God blessed me to win. Later on they rang the bell again for a merchandise prime. The announcer was bragging that I won the other two primes and that I was sure to win this one as well, as we passed by. Talk about some pressure in front of hundreds of people. Well he could tell I was a big guy and he new it was a food prime. I wish they would have told us but am glad they didn't. My body was telling me don't do it. You will blow yourself up going for whatever prize they will give you. The other four riders let me have the prime since the announcer told them they didn't have a chance. They let me have the prime for a four course meal and a grand total of $108 dollars worth of the best food I have had eating out in a long time. This was also the tenth year Ann. since we have been to Canada so it was a very great night, and Caylin's first time to Canada.
Polo made this whole sponsorship deal happen. My 2nd year of racing was one of my best because I felt like all the guys on the team were my brothers, so when Polo e-mailed me I was more than happy to sign the deal. Polo gave me some goodies today so I wouldn't stand out from the rest of the racers. The colors are hard to pick out in a race compared to the Yellow Team GodSpeed uniforms I have, we will add some yellow for 2008.
Stephan, Dave, Anthony, and Dick were at the race too. Dave and talked about families and our trip to Baltimore, Md. for Bike jam we did one year together with Stephan when we were on different teams. Well actually Dave was on a different team but we all got together really well. That was the time when my grandma had ice cream and brownies for us at 1:00am we got up 5 hours later and rushed to the race. Great times.
Dave finished 6th today and Stephan got 10th after not riding for a month, he was over in Romania, where he grew up as the Junior National Champion.
I got 2nd today and Andy won the race, man does it feel good to win as a team.
Thanks to all the sponsors and RGF Solutions for the rest of this year and next.
Visit the website at: www.rgfsolutionssportsmarketing.com