USGP round number 3 is in the books. Similar to last weekend at the Iceman I am walking away from the weekend with mixed emotions. Half of me is pretty happy that I finished Sunday in 8th place, my best USGP result ever, the other half of me is pretty disappointed that I can't figure out how to race the first lap of a race and I start off with a 30 second disadvantage.
I started off the weekend with a slightly different strategy than in years past. I opted for the warm up ride at home(even though it was 30 degress) instead of traveling the 500 miles to Louisville and then riding the course. It worked out good...
After my ride Friday morning we loaded up the Gear Grinder van and headed south. Tristan, Tim, and I took the relaxed approach and after a stop for a mean Bison Burger in Columbia, IN at Papas Grill we arrived in Louisville.
Saturday morning I usually wait around at the hotel room and watch TV and screw off on the internet, but this time I opted for a little AM spin. I cruised down to the venue picked up my number and checked out the course.
A pretty good lunch and a coffee to wake me up a little(I was really sleepy all day FRI and SAT) and it was go time.
3rd row call up....not too thrilled, but hey...I had what felt like a bad start and never even saw the leaders. I kept my head down and by the end of the race I was catching Tristan and Zach and was sprinting for 9th....I was a little too gassed from chasing though and finished 11th.
Best part of the weekend was Spinellis Pizzeria...a new local joint w. mom, dad, T, T, Karew, Street Player and Wagner. Skull and Crossbones on the front door was a good sign and the pizza was killer.
Sunday was that exact same...I was a little less sleepy, but I still got the coffee from Panera. Somehow I managaed and even worse start from the 3rd row. I was watching the cyclingdirt.com videos and counted my self in approx 30th over the green monster on lap 1. That's bad because I passed a bunch of guys before that...I ended up riding w/ Trebon for a while. Towards the middle of the race a big group came together and I rode right through them thanks for some great advice from the Clif Bar super fans. Wow all the sudden I was inside the top 10. I bridged up to Tristan and we were 8th and 9th. Two WI homeys racing in the top 10. It's such a huge advantage to have a training partner who can also race in the top 10. I dropped T with a lap to go and started chasing down Driscoll and Johnson. I ran out of time....but the fitness was good and I finished 8th. Now I just need to have a good start. Thanks to all who have helped. Gear Grinder, Trek, Shimano, HED, Crank Bros, Clif Bar, Oakley, Hyundai, Bell Helmets....and of course the local Superfans. The cheeseheads got some love in Louisville.
After the race I drove home to Athens OH with my parents. Chloe and TJ are joining us for a week of riding, relaxing, and some Monday Night Football!!! Also going to be working on the Momentum Endurance Winter Training Camp plans. We went and cruised some ridges today and tomorrow we are going to hit up the mtb trails!
Stay tuned this week to the blog....planning on lots of updates...Thanksgiving is approaching so its time to give thanks to my sponsors!!!