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Spring Racing Underway
10th Mar 2013Posted in: Blog 0
Spring Racing Underway

While the excitement of rookie week has certainly taken the spotlight over the past month, we’ve also kicked off the spring racing calendar. There’s no better way to make dramatic gains in fitness and test out the legs than doing these early-season races, so it’s something we’ve prioritized more and more over the past couple of years.

LWCrit2

Gdew driving the pace with one to go

Gdew and I kicked things off at Lindsey Wilson 2 weeks ago along with our rookie AJ Sood, who was competing in his first ever bike race. The road race Saturday was nothing short of brutal, with the hilly course not exactly my cup of tea. Despite taking a flyer to try and improve my position before the big climb at the end of the first lap, I was promptly shelled and forced to finish the remaining 50 miles on my own. Gdew was in prime form, but an untimely flat ended his day roughly 30 miles into the 75-mile race. AJ hung tough in the D’s race after getting caught up behind a wreck. Sunday’s crit didn’t fare much better in the results column, but Gdew and I were both active at the front for much of the race and he was especially instrumental in helping IU put 2 riders in the top 10.

Last Friday kicked off the inaugural Friday Night Race Series. This is the first time Little 5’ers have ever been able to get on the track and race prior to the typical spring series events, and we could not be more excited. With freezing rain on the forecast, only 20-something male riders showed up, so it quickly turned into a 4v4 competition between us and the Cutters. In the 20-lap scratch race, Laser/Green/myself spent the first 10 laps launching attacks and trying to control the front I was able to get and hold a gap for 6+ laps, but unfortunately got caught with a little over a lap to go. Kragie was rested for the sprint, but was caught off guard by Kevin Depasse from the Cutters, who took the victory. Kragie rode in for a comfortable second, with Laser winning the spring for 3rd. We had a similar strategy for the points race, but once again Depasse got the better of us and took all 4 sprints. Kragie scored enough points for 2nd, and I snuck in for 4th. Miss ‘n Out was our best race of the evening, with Green and I taking 1st and 2nd, ending the night on a high note. We had a blast and can’t wait for the next one on March 29th.

DepauwCrit

Little less cold for the criterium

The next day Kragie, Green, Gdew, and I journeyed to Depauw for their road race around Heritage Lake. The cold weather from the previous night carried over, and we had to deal with mid-race snow and frozen bottles all day. Kragie and Green were near the front for all of the 40-mile B’s race, but the efforts of Friday night caught up with them and they finished in the field. In the 72-mile A’s race, II got caught behind a wreck a little over 30 miles in, which was the end of my miserable day. Gdew fought dead legs to finish with the field. Our fortunes weren’t much better in Sunday’s crit, where there weren’t any results to write home about.

Our fortunes finally improved today at the Long Run Park Circuit Race in Louisville, KY. We’ve done this race for the past 3 years, so we knew the course well. In his first USAC racing of the season, Laser was near the front for the entirety of the 4/5 race before taking 4th. In the 3/4 race he and his summer team teammates controlled the race while their other teammate, Paul Smith from Delts, solo’ed away to victory. Laser wrapped up their hard work by dominating the field sprint to take 2nd. In the 1/2/3 race, I spent much of the day off the front or in breaks, but wasn’t able to make the winning selection. Green sat comfortably at the front, and we both finished around 30th. Even though we weren’t thrilled with our results, our numbers were off the charts and we’re feeling stronger than ever with April 20th looming.

We’ll be spending the next week in Bloomington for our annual spring break training camp. The track’s open from 11 AM – 9 PM, so hopefully the weather will take a turn for the better. We’ve yet to actually throw any fast exchanges or do any intense team workouts on the cinders, so this week is going to be especially important.  41 days!

in _kai_
Eric Anderson
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