Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
TT - Brannon braved the cool morning air to open his legs up in the time trial & hopefully grab a few omnium points in the process. The course was a difficult rolling out & back 10 mile challenge. He came within 16 seconds of earning points which would prove critical later in the close final overall standings.
Crit - The warm afternoon welcomed the field to a well designed 6 turn oval shaped course. It featured a turning climb through turns 4-6 into a final straight that is usually plagued by a crosswind. Today, however, the wind would be a headwind down the back stretch & a tailwind to the finish. Speed was kept high throughout the race as Patrick Allison (TNT Fireworks) & Sammy Flores (Birmingham Velo/Tria) did battle over MAR lap points. Brannon & Steve stayed near the front most of the race. Brannon read the field well going into the final lap & jumped into a great position as they entered the backstretch. Coming out of the final turn he drove it to the line for 3rd behind Flores (Velo/Tria) & Cody Hall (VeloVoodoo). This put Brannon back into the mix in 7th overall with only a few points separating him from a top 5.
RR - The cool morning air had everyone looking at each other to decide what to wear as it promised to warm up quickly & the race would be a long rolling 68 mile journey. Eric joined Brannon & Steve, & had done the math to set our strategy for the day: get Brannon KOM bonus points to move him into 5th, keep the contenders from taking them, & then set him up for the finish. Of the contenders Adam Handler & Nathan Sibly of Aarons were only one point ahead of Brannon, Patrick Vrana (RBM) only a couple points behind, & several others in striking distance.
Reality setup a 3 man train for the first KOM where Brannon edged out Patrick Allison (TNT) moving Brannon into 5th overall. Eric & Steve worked to keep the many breaks within reach. Steve launched for the second KOM to keep points from the challengers & was just beat on the line by Flores (Birmingham Velo/Tria). From there it was a game of position with short break attempts going off on the run into the finish. A small group hung off the front of the peleton containing the dangerous Aarons team in the finale. Eric led the charge with Brannon in tow. In the confusion of the final course turns & the catch of the break Brannon found himself behind a spent Aarons rider with 250m to go, & had to adjust his sprint while the field surged around on the right. Steve drove through on the outside to a 9th place finish, Brannon recovered for 10th, & Eric finished 24th.
Overall - Much of the hard work grabbing & protecting the 18 KOM points on offer during the road race was overshadowed by the large number of points available at the finish. Adam Handler (Aarons) & Patrick Vrana (RBM) finished on the RR podium, & the KOM points that
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Prologue & Criterium
With the thick, cool morning fog making the roads wet we had to be more cautious railing the 12 corners of the 3.67km prologue. Prologue results put Michael in 3rd, Eric in 5th, Brannon in 9th, Rob in 15th & Reggie in 23rd.
The sun was out and shining for the afternoon criterium and it was nice and warm. A pleasant change from the previous weekend’s racing weather. The Albany crit course is always a favorite with its unique shape and having 8 corners. The plan was to keep Michael safe, protect or get MAR primes and lead Michael out for the win. It was a fast race and another team (Jittery Joes Devo) was working hard for their GC rider Mark Babcock. However, we rode together as team better than expected this early in the season by reading the race and each other perfectly. We just clicked. Everyone was in the right spot at the right moments and we kept the race mostly under our control eventually leading Michael out for the win. Michael was now in the overall lead and Eric was in 6th.
Sunday, March 15, 2009
The Albany road racecourse is a fast, flat course where wind is your worst enemy. Due to the flat and open terrain the wind is always the tail wind section always seems to be the shortest. With Michael in 1st place and Eric in 6th the plan was for both to do as little work as possible except for Michael getting at least one KOM bonus to further his time advantage. The team was to protect the other KOM’s and cover all breaks keeping Michael safe in the lead for the overall win. On lap two a breakaway got away and earned a 30 second gap to the main field. Rob managed to get in the break prior to the gap opening up too big and stayed in until about 10 miles from the finish. By this time the main field had lost several riders due to the fast pace.
Eric and Michael needed a pack finish so that everyone received the same time for the road race. This would secure their 1st and 6th positions in the overall. Organizing a chase was not easy with the lack of assistance from other riders and a rival team (with two riders in the breakaway) continually disrupting efforts to organize the chase. Having pulled the chase group for miles, Michael and Eric finally reeled in the break and the pack was back together for a group sprint finish.
Michael 1st place
Eric 6th place
Reggie 15th place
Rob 21st placeBrannon 24th place