Posted on July 19th, 2013 No comments
Driving home from Pescadero about a month ago, I told myself that it’s a bit silly for me to be entering these hilly road races in the P12 when I could at least last another 10 miles in the Masters before getting dropped. Somehow, here I was at Leesville lining up with the youngsters (except Kevin Metcalfe) again and like at Pescadero, several local pros we’re lining up as well guaranteeing that I’d be getting dropped on the climb. Anyway, I haven’t been able to do enough races with my teammates so when I saw that James Enright, Lee Peters, Isaac Sparling and Mat Gordon would be there, I figured I’d give it a go and hopefully be able to be close enough over the climb to play a role.
I’d last done this race in 2002 and my Kodak Gallery-Sierra Nevada teammate, Russell Hamby, and I went 1,3 as back then we were the local pros with a bit too much fitness for the local scene. Today, it looked like Nate English, Max Jenkins and Kirk Carlsen would be playing that role with a strong Marc-Pro Strava squad looking to overcome them.. The beginning of the race went as planned with everyone but me efficiently marking moves on the smooth pavement before crossing HWY 20. I had told the other guys I needed to be ultra-conservative at the beginning as I didn’t want to be out the back before we even hit the climb. Although, moves here rarely stick, it can put a team on the back-foot if a group goes up the road early without representation especially with our small but strong field.
As soon as we hit the rough section, the difficulty went way up as one rider after another would attack or just drill it over the rough road. The road or my memory or both had deteriorated quite a bit in the last 11 years as back then this section was just rough whereas now it felt like a rocky mtn. bike descent. Mat’s body decided to rebel at this point and he had to finish out the race at his own pace. A few K later, Lee (unfortunately) perfectly marked an attack by Nate as we hit the steady grade before the actual climb. Nate proceeded to discuss politics with Lee which must have got him worked up as he drilled it towards the climb. Meanwhile, the rest of us we’re strung out as well but well placed before the climb. Lee eventually had enough of Nate’s ramblings so he came back to visit us just before the climb. As we hit the climb, James and I we’re perfectly placed but the pace was too much for us to do anything but back off and take it at our own pace. My heart rate hit 180 pretty quickly which I figured would be the end of me but somehow I managed to hold it there without actually blowing which I hadn’t been able to do yet this decade.
I crested the climb with friendly Marc-Pro, Strava rider, Nate Freed, who generously was pointing out the worst potholes on the climb. He was intent on picking up some riders just in front of us but I was a bit hesitant as I didn’t know how far back James and Lee were. A few kilometers later, we had picked up a couple of riders in front of us and a couple had caught from behind including English’s teammate, Max Jenkins, who had had a mechanical issue on the climb. I still couldn’t see my teammates behind and the decision to wait or not was taken out of my hands as our group began to drill it in pursuit of the riders up the road. Eventually, we picked up another group of 3 and we were told the lead group of 4 was 2:00 up the road.
After we climbed back over the hills towards the central valley, we got a decent rotating paceline going and relatively quickly brought the gap down to about 45 seconds. Even with a teammate up front, Max continued to work and so did the 2 Marc-Pro riders who unbeknownst to me also had a rider up front. At about 8K to go, those riders decided we were close enough and they weren’t going to let our whole group of 9 catch their teammates. Attacks began going with the M-P riders and the 2 Lombardi riders having the advantage numbers wise. Finally, 1 from each of those teams and a Clif Bar rider went clear and Max and I were being nuetralized by their remaining teammates. We continued attacking them though until I broke clear and soloed home for 8th place. Nothing worth writing an overly long race report about but satisfying anyway.
James and Lee ended up together after the climb and joined with a couple of other riders to form the next group on the road. They outsprinted their group to take 13th & 14th and grab some well earned BAR points. Isaac and Lee both were able to get to enjoy the cool backroads and finished out their races strongly. Looking forward to getting the whole team together for a few CalCup races and some SquadraSF podium finishes.
Posted on June 6th, 2013 No comments
Words: SquadraSF Cat4 Team: Graham Abra, Tyler Corelitz, James Yuan, Franco Campilongo, Jeremy Dossetter
Graham:This was an awesome race for us. Tyler grew a mustache. James crashed twice and then had beers. Franco came out of restaurant ownership induced retirement. Jeremy joined the team and there was the rise of the SquadraSF train.James: I really regret not doing the recon ride on Thursday. I would have gotten smart about taking those extremely deceptive turns at speed during the race. The guy who crashed in front of me was OVER the cliff.Jeremy Dossetter: Graham was an animal. It was an absolute blast racing with (the team). It was the most fun I’ve ever had racing a bike.Graham: Looking at some of the other riders final Strava times up Haskins, had I not had the Squadra train lead out putting me in the top wheels starting the climb there’s no way I would have been in the top ten at the finish. True team result on this one in a stacked field on a hard course.We ended the day at Terrone with beers, pizza and gelato – because it makes you win.Tyler: 10th wheel was maybe the furthest I saw Graham the whole race. Dude is flying. Franco and I joked at the end: If he wins he buys the first round. If he losses he buys all the rounds.The meal at Terrone afterwards was excellent. Can’t say enough good things about it.
Posted on May 8th, 2013 No comments
Enright, Wolfgang victorious; Schuster impressive in second race in the E3s
At this point, it is difficult to write a weekly race recap without mentioning the names of Kurt Wolfgang, James Enright and Brian Schuster. Not that I’d want to, since one of the joys of this season has been watching these amazingly gifted riders put up impressive results week in and week out. This past weekend was no exception. Not to be outdone however, a number of other SquadraSF riders also put up some impressive results. In the following, they take us through the action.
Words: Brian Schuster (2nd- E3)
Now, in its 40 year, Cat’s Hill stands as a true NoCal classic. It was hot out there… My Garmin said 90 degr