Thursday, July 05, 2007

FITCHBURG

Here it is like promised a little more info on Fitchburg.

The first day was the time trial that was held on mostly an uphill drag for the first 8km followed by a quick downhill section for the final 2km's. I started out a bit quick catching my 30 second man within the first 1km or 2. I was doing pretty good until the end when I could tell I wasn't pouring it on as hard as I should have coming into the finish, but I was still able to manage 5th. Are team was in good position with three riders inside the top 20.

The second day was the circuit race. The team put in a phenaminal effort in on this one. Our guys started to attack half way into the race which led to Dewald and Norton in two separate breaks, and Norton being able to grab the green sprinters jersey in his late race escape that got caught on the final lap. I threw out an attack on the final lap, but I didn't get very far and more or less everyone was ready and setting up for the sprint finish. Luckily are sprinter Alejandro was ready to go and came across the line first. I came across the line safely in 9th place and still holding my GC placing heading into the road race.



The third day was the big day with the ride up Wachussette Mountain. Once again our team did a terrific job following some moves and we were marking the key riders that we felt would affect the GC. Eventually 2 groups of 4 riders escaped up the road and joined together to make the break of the day. We played it very cool, almost to cool as I was getting a bit worried before we started to help reel back in the break. With 3 laps to go they had built up a gap of 5 minutes and soon enough the gap started to slide in our favor. On the following lap the gap was down to 3 1/2 minutes. Going up the feed zone climb going into the last lap a few riders attacked and Alejandro and I made a group of 8 going into the last lap down by 2 1/2 minutes with the ascent up the finishing climb coming.

Alejandro kept the pace on one of the stair step climbs just before the feed zone climb and I was on his wheel as we opened a gap. We hit hard from there on as the race was still up the road. We actually were able to catch 6 of the 8 riders in the final 2km's. From there I was on my own chasing down the two leaders. I was able to ride across the line with Cam Evans, but was unable to close the 15 second gap to Page. In the process though I had opened up a big enough gap over everyone else and had grabbed the lead in the overall classification. Alejandro put in a strong effort as well and was able to move into 3rd place overall. I was super excited and with the effort the team put in it was well deserved and earned.

The final day was the criterium and us holding onto a lead of 19 seconds and two riders on the podium for the GC we wanted to keep that safe. We were more then happy to see a break go in the criterium that contained no dangerous riders and we could ride on the front to keep in close with VMG. The laps couldn't click by fast enough, but soon enough we were under 10 and the break was coming back, and the attacks started again. I followed Evans around (who was in 2nd) like he was my best friend as he was trying some last mintue attacks. Soon enough we were on the final lap and the field sprint was about to begin. Alejandro and I crossed the line safely and it was first and 3rd for us on the final GC.


I was so pumped to get my first stage race victory and I have been dreaming of this for a while. Im just so glad to have been surronded by people who have supported and encouraged me along the way and who have helped make this possible. Hopefully there will be plenty more along the way.

Thanks for everything,
Breeze On

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