Thursday Night Crit Report (8/30)
The race started off at an average race pace. Not crazy fast and not slow. After 3 laps there was a paceline about 20 people long and I was probably about 15th or so. Some people were falling off the back already. After a few more laps I decided to move up a bit. I moved up to around 8th or 10th and was feeling good. The pace picked up a bit and things were uneventful for a few more laps. We were lapping slower riders at this point. With about 5 to go I was still around 8th wheel and touched wheels with the guy in front of me. I damn near went down and it must have looked really sketchy because everyone said "nice save." With 3 to go the pace was picking up and I was marking my target. The guy I was watching won the previous two races and is super strong on the last lap and has a hell of a sprint. I was able to get on his wheel. With two to go we were coming around the sharp corner before the start/finish and I heard a bad crash behind me. I didn't look back because the pace was pretty high and the guys ahead weren't slowing. With 1 lap to go I was still in 8th or so and felt like I had the lungs and legs to win. The last lap pace was fast. I moved up to about 7th and as we were hammering toward the corner before the finish one of the guys ahead popped. He slowed and was right in the middle of the corner. The few ahead of me squeezed past and as I was coming through it was shutting down so I had to dart through the corner flatter than I wanted to. The fact that I was taking the corner at 30+ mph didn't make it easier. Long story short is I went way wide and a gap of a few yards opened and that is how I finished my sprint. I think I finished in 6th place. I still feel that physically I could have won, but I didn't put myself in a good position to win. The dude I marked won again - 3 in a row. He is tough. Goal 1 met. Goal 2 will have to wait until next week.
I will do one more Thursday crit next week and then it is off to Grand Rapids, MI to do the Priority Health Criterium and meet some bloggers. It should be a blast. Have a good Friday.