Day 2 Road Race
The race today had us taking to the streets of Isabella County in central Michigan for a 105 mile road race. Anyone familiar with the area knows that there isn't much in the way of elevation gain or really anything other then flat farm fields and nice straight roads.
The plan was simple for Kenda, and that was to be in the break and try not to be out numbered by any other team. With other teams having as much as 8 the 3 of us knew that it was going to be tough. The first sprint of the day came up early, very early within the first 3 miles. I absolutely forgot all about it and couldn't figure out why everyone was sprinting so hard.
A mile later a few attacks started and by mile 10 I found myself off the front with Greg from the Panther team and soon enough Ben had came across. Greg and I just hit it and opened up a good gap for the break of 6. Two more riders did come up in the next 5 miles and one was Dan from Panthers and that was soon. From there it was Greg Christian and Dan Campbell (Panthers) Tom Burke, Brett Stewart, and myself doing the work as Ben, Mark and Graham sat on. We basically had two on two and with Ben sitting on with the others guys I figured this was a good situation and I would roll with it even though the others were just sitting on.
It took a while for the gap to snap wide open, but it eventual did and the 5 us just continued to work and stroll through Isabella county doing some excellent echelon on the open roads. Around 60-70 miles into the race a couple of others started to miss pulls and sit a little longer. Eventually once again it turned into Greg and myself doing much of the work, but also Tom doing a good amount. Once Dan started to sit a bit more I started to get a bit worried, but with Ben sitting on I figured we were good to go.
20 miles out from the finish Dan took a couple of digs and we got on it quickly. Then he did more of an attack and got clear for a mile or two. Once that was brought back Greg attack and that was brought back. Then I decided to go on the offense and counter, but that to was brought back. A quick sit up and soon Greg was back off with Mark and Graham in tow.
Unfortinelty Ben at this time was getting a few cramps. I tried chasing and got some help from Ben, Tom, and Brett, but we weren't closing fast enough or at all. I took some harder pulls and found myself going at it alone till Dan would come back with the others in tow, until the third time. I got a gap he came across and then it was just him and I chasing the other 3. I just didn't have the horsepower I normal have at this time and couldn't do enough to close the gap. We were within 10 seconds the last few km's but just didn't have enough at the end. Great job to Greg who rode like a hoss on the day.
Even though the day didn't finish off to well, Ben after finishing 6th on the day ended up taking the overall omnium at the Tour de Mt Pleasant and that is very nice cap to the weekend of racing. This was a great weekend of racing with a good amount of spectators and awesome support from the volunteers and the city itself. Hopefully it will continue next year and be even bigger.
Overall I was pretty happy with how I felt coming back after the injury lay off and really believe I'll be ready to go in couple of weeks at Fitchburg.