Thursday, March 26, 2009

Tour of Tuscaloosa

The Tour of Tuscaloosa started Saturday after noon for Nathan and I with a junior criterium in downtown Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The junior field had some good riders but Nathan and I had not problem finishing 1-2. After our short junior race it was time to start thinking about the nights big event, a 50 minute pro ½ twilight criterium. I have watched twilight criterium before, however this was more than a twilight crit. The course was a long 1.2 mile loop that passed through downtown which was lit well, however the course then descended a steep hill to the river which lead to a series of dark streets that were not lighted. I’d ridden the course earlier in the junior race so I knew how to take all the turns, but on lap one of the pro ½ race I felt as I was on a course I’d never ridden.
Despite the dark streets as strong winds the race went on and turned out well for our team (Hot Tubes). Nathan got in an early group of the front which happened to hold off the chasing pack until the end. He was under geared in his small junior gears for the final sprint but still took 3rd. Ben and I both finished in the pack behind, and road in a supporting role of Nathan.
The road race the following morning started less than 11 hours after the finish of the twilight criterium, so we didn’t have much time to rest. We woke the next morning to cold humid air, we arrived at the start and were ready to race. Ben, Nathan and I covered every move for the first three laps thinking that something would stay away off the front. However nothing did and after 4 laps Ben called it quits and Nathan followed on lap 6. I managed to finish in the pack. It was a hard race and good training as well.
Now I’m at Ben’s house outside of Jackson Mississippi where I will be for a few weeks until our team training camp in Georgia April 18th .


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