Athens Twilight 2010
Even in the pouring rain, this race is awesome. I raced the computrainer qualifiers on Friday and placed 83rd, but that still meant I was starting towards the back — maybe 10th row on the start line? After all the call-ups, we were finally off and the race went well for the first two corners — bunch up on the first corner, faster through the second corner, and then a big crash on turn 3. I made it through but it was single file, strung out, and very fast coming out of turn 4 where more guys had gone down (keep in mind this is lap #1 of 80!!!). By this point we had already lost 30 guys or so and I was at the back of the pack. I came out of Turn 2 on the second lap and passed some guys and started to move up – but there were a lot of guys taking the corners tentatively so gaps were opening up everywhere. I eventually had to chase around a couple gaps and then found myself chasing around a gap I couldn’t close about 15 laps into the race. I chased hard for 5 or 6 more laps before it became clear that I was not going to catch back on and so I pulled off at the top of the hill as the pace car and lead motorcycles came into view at the bottom of the hill. A couple positive things from the race — I love my Specialized All Weather Pro rain tires — I could take corners pedaling at full speed even in the pouring rain and my tires did not slip a single time in the race. The other positive thing is that I survived without breaking anything on me or the bike — so I’m ready and excited to be a bit fresher than normal for the Roswell crit tomorrow! No heartrate data b/c I didn’t feel it was worth the risk of my Garmin bouncing off the bike during the race — plus no guarantees that it would have been working right in the pouring rain. Thanks everyone for cheering out there – I heard people screaming on Turns 1, 2 and 3 — you guys are awesome!