by Michael Hast
The Tolero crits were on a tough course for me. There were a lot of awkward corners and a little incline towards the finish. I loved the fact that the crit was in the Casa Adobes Church parking lot. Our team set up in the race course parking lot and it was great to see so many Cat 5 riders that are new to crit racing. My first race of the day was Cat 4/5 which was 30 minutes long. I had a very good start and was in the top 5. After a few laps Kyle made an attack, a prime was announced and I attempted to bridge to Kyle. I was not able to catch him to contend for the prime, but was in a great spot for the next couple of laps. Being up front meant for me to take the corners the way I wanted to take them, but tired me out immensely. For the last 5 minutes of the race I was in the back barely hanging on.
Michael working hard in the Cat 3/4 race
My goal for the next race, Cat 3/4, was to stay in the middle of the pack and get comfortable there. Between the Cat 4/5 and Cat 3/4 race was only 20 minutes of rest and the next race was 40 minutes. Those 40 minutes were a race of perseverance. Gary's Valley of the Sun road race came to mind which reminded me of Romans 5:4,5 "knowing that racing produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us." I was in the back of the pack, catching up to the pack after most of the corners. Buzz attacked to bridge to Kyle which tore the pack to pieces. At that point I lost the connection to the pack and was riding for about 12 minutes solo, working hard to not get lapped and pulled from the race. I succeeded, and had a sprint finish with an ASU rider, praises be to our Heavenly Father!
Michael sprinting for the line