Monday, June 13, 2011

Ohio State Road Race Championship

I raced today in Shreve, Ohio in the Ohio State Road Race Championship in the category 3 class. Since I had broken my Fuji frame during the Tour of Tucker County, I was racing my brand new Scott Addict R15. I finally figured out how to shift with the SRAM Red shifters (duh!) And went out for a 20-minute warm-up. There were 35 entrants, with 2 teams (Lake Effect and Kenda) with 6 riders each, as well as 4 from Stark Velo. The route was 8.5 miles with a half-mile climb at the start of each lap. The first lap was at a decent pace, as many racers had never been on the route before. The second time up the climb, though, we were really on the gas. At the top, there was a group of around 25 of us and the tempo didn't let up until we crested the hill the third time.

Since I had been without a road bike the past 2 weeks, I wasn't sure how the legs would feel, but so far, so good! I quickly realized that I was clearly the second-best climber in the field, but, being Ohio, the finish line was 7 miles after the climb. On the back side of lap 3, 2 racers attacked and got a good gap. For whatever reason, the 3 teams with numbers decided not to chase, so we kept a high pace, trying to shed riders each time up the climb. On the final run-in to town, I was still feeling good so I worked my way to the front - second wheel with 2 miles to go. One Stark Velo rider poured on the gas up to 500M to go. From there, he pulled off so I gave it full gas, knowing the big teams were massing behind me. The finish was fun for all the spectators, but I finished 12th. I was happy with my result considering I was solo against a lot of the big Ohio squads, but took some solace in knowing I made them suffer each time we went up the climb. Next up - racing in WV the day before Father's Day!

Thanks for reading,

-Ben