Since I last updated, we did a circuit race around about a 20 mile loop, half uphill, then half downhill. We did 4.5 laps, which meant 5 climbs and 4 descents. It started off pretty aggro, but the break went about 3/4 of the way up the first time, so we got to chill out over the top and the next couple laps as Bissell just rode the front setting tempo. The 4th time up I noticed I was slipping dangerously close to the back, and then it kicked up a little bit about 10k from the top and the next thing I knew I was in the caravan. I put on a little chase, and watched the Bob's guy in front of me hang on to a bottle from his car and get dragged away from me up the road. I rode an easy tempo for a while then picked it up to make sure I didn't get time cut.
The Time Trial the next day was by far the coolest TT course I've ever done. I didn't pre-ride it, and since a smoking fast TT would have kept me in last place GC, I decided to take it easy and still maintain my last place.
Yesterday was the Wy,East Road Race. It was 100 miles with like 39,000,000 ft of climbing. It started out so fast. For those of you who haven't been following the racing out here, Rory Sutherland from Health Net took the leaders jersey after the TT, so it was there responsibility to ride the front. I was hoping a break would go early and we could just chill out for a while but instead, groups of like 30-40 kept going away, and Health Net would string it out single file to bring the break back, but since they were so big it seemed like it took forever for them to come back, then another huge move would go and we'd get strung out again.
Meanwhile it's 90 degrees and we're going over roller after roller. I just kept telling myself to hang on over one more roller and then it would slow up, but it never did. Even through the feed zone it stayed single file, so of course I got caught out in the 3rd group on the road. I helped chase back to the 2nd group, but they were still chasing the first group and I came off just as the caught the 1st group. I chased as hard as I could through the caravan because I knew there was no riding the next 60 miles alone. I made it up to like the #2 car in the caravan, but then I blew up for real, and limped it for a few more miles in a little grupetto before I hopped in a car.
Now the race is over for me, the other guys get to do a 75 minute crit in downtown Hood River this afternoon. It's on a .4 mile course with a 180 degree corner, so it sounds interesting. I'll just be hanging out, getting ready to put my driving shoes on since I'm sure I'll be the one who gets to drive first.
That's all I've got right now, Hood River has been awesome, the courses have been really cool, but I can't say I've enjoyed racing on them that much! Hopefully I'll come out of this week with a little bit of form that I can use later this summer. Thanks for checking in.