by Michael Hast
On Sunday was the Cat. 4 State Criterium Championship race. So far this year the Cat. 4 races have been more competitive than the Masters Cat. 4/5 40+ races. So I was looking for some strong young riders to go on a break with. Jimmy told he was hesitant to go to the front of the pack during Fridays race in fear of being stuck up front. I told him our strategy should be that he should go up front and I will launch an attack to relieve him from the front position. Or we would both go to the front and one of us attack.
After the 1st lap we did just that, we went to the front just after the 180 degree turn, but didn't launch an attack just yet. I was waiting for prime to be announced and someone chasing that prime. Someone always does and so the attack was on. The attack after the 1st prime didn't succeed, but there is always another prime. The rider who won the second prime had a decent gap (see video 1:00 min) and after catching that rider, I launched another attack. Adam from Tucson Endurance followed, passed me, telling me we had a gap (see video 1:28 min). From that time I dug deep and wanted that break to succeed. Adam and I worked well together switch the lead every half a lap. Eventually Adam told me, he will dig in one more time and bring me to line for me to take a the prime and them I am on my own. He worked hard and had to drop back (see video 2:18). Adam from the MORE Foundation Cycling Team bridge up to me and brought new energy into the break. At times he put in such an effort that I couldn't hold his wheel. But I dug in deep and said to myself, if this is the last lap of my life, let's give it all I got. With 2 laps to go we had about a 20 second gap which is not much, but after a 35 minute race the chasers are usually tired as well. Starting on the last lap after the 180 degree turn Adam sprinted which took me by surprise, but I stayed calm and concentrated on catching his wheel again. After the last turn we both started our sprint and Adam out sprinted me. I was very happy and give thanks and all the glory to my Heavenly Father for the 2nd Place finish in the Cat. 4 and winning one prime.
I have to give thanks to my wife Tina who cheered me on and took this video, to Jimmy for lending me his backup bike (the team bike ;-)) and both Adams and their teammates who helped the break to succeed.