Jun 21, 2009

Giro di Jersey Circuit Race

Last day of the GdJ, more rain. The circuit race can be pretty hard. Because you've got four corners and three hills to sprint up every lap, if enough guys decide to turn the screws (like last year) it can be a real hour of suffering.

The race started out hard this year. Kelly Benefits was defending their leaders jersey and every time an attack would go, they'd jump on. After two laps, I didn't know if I'd make it to the end. A few guys got popped off the back in those first couple laps. On lap three a single guy got away and Kelly let him go. Since its an omnium (points not time), he didn't pose any GC threat no matter how much time he got. The rest of the race eased up a bit and I felt much more comfortable.

On the last lap Kelly and Westwood cranked it up a bit. Not so fast that I was in trouble, but fast enough that it was strung out and I couldn't move up very easily. On the back stretch I was sitting about 20th. Through turns 3 and 4, I took some sweet lines and shot up the inside to 10th place. As everyone opened up the sprint, I jumped from wheel to wheel until with 100 to go I jumped up the inside and came even with the leader and

...almost got him at the line.

My third and tenth were good enough for 7th in the GC, the first cat 4 in the race. Racing in the rain was fun, not that I'd want to do it every day, but it was a good change of pace.

I did a lot better this year than I did last; certainly a lot of that is due to smaller fields, but I raced a lot smarter. No more silly attacks off the front, any time I put in some effort it was with a lot of thought and I really think that paid off.

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