by Scott Demel
A Hot day (near 90oF), but clouds rolled in to block the sun. Relaxed, warmed-up on the trainer, and dripping sweat (like a hog). Small field of 31 riders. Pace started out OK, and I stayed in the front 5-7 riders. Lake Placid team (6 or 7 riders) is sending guys off every 1-2 laps... let 'em cook. The CRCA guys who made the journey up here start getting bored and the pace goes up around lap 6 or 7.
Prime lap called about lap 10
and the field is stretched into a long line. After the prime,
Aaron Wolf (Edgemont), a Placid, and another (Gators) get a gap.
I watch it for a lap or two. They're slowly gaining time. I
jump to chase. I end up riding between the field and the
break. Let off the gas and a few others get close from the front
of the field. I drop back. Within a lap, 3 of us in a small
About lap 15 and 2 others
bridge up to our chase. We're gaining on the front break and
slowly getting time on the field (a second or two here and
there). About 5 to go and the break is caught. 6 have made
the selection in this group, and the race pays to 6. We all keep
working and gain big time ahead of the field.
It starts to rain lightly and
the roads are getting very slick. The field is out of sight
behind us and we start thinking about the final with 1.5laps to
go. Going to the last lap on turn 3 and I'm #3 in the line -
maybe too close if #1 and #2 pull off, maybe too far back if #1 (Chris
Chaput, Champion) stays on the front a bit longer. #1 stays and pulls
off just before Turn 4. CRASH - someone goes down behind me in
the wet of Turn 4. #2 jumps hard and I just miss grabbing the
wheel. Sprint hard and hold on for 2nd Place, beaten by a good
1-2 bike lengths.