Pescadero Road Race 2013
Thirsty Bear Team: Alan Roberts (DNP), Holger Steinbach (9th), Gardie Jackson (35th), Max Thompson (DNP), Duane Coughlin (14th), Lance Haag (33rd) , and me (6th) (49 started the race).
We talked about the race a little in advance it seemed that Max, Holger, and I had aspirations to be active on the front while Duane, Lance, and Alan were hoping to stick with the pack over all the hills. Gardie was uncertain after being off the bike for a couple weeks, but we knew he’d be mixing it up. It was great to have so many teammates and a couple that I’ve raced with often (Max and Holger). The field was loaded. The list was impressive and deep. With that size field and all the strong riders, it was set up to be a hard race. And it was. One of the best race experiences I’ve been a part of in that there was a lot of action a lot of the time. Never a dull moment and the climbs were tough too.
After a number of attempts in the first lap, things calmed down and we went up Haskins Hill controlled but still pretty fast. We lost some guys but then they caught back on during the descent. Not before Holger (TB), Hunter Z (Hammer), Jay Klein (former TB), and Chris Courtney (SJBC) got away. We slowed to a crawl and I was fine with that as I thought we had the strongest guy in the break. On the Stage Road hills, things heated up again and by the time we hit Route 84, Cale Reeder (Hammer), Dirk Himley (Hammer), Chris Wire (Prime Time) were up the road. Our pack was down to about 8 other guys including Kevin Metcalfe (Specialized), John Hunt (Cal Giant), Kevin Susco (Strava), David Passmore (SJBC), Max Thompson (TB) and some other dudes.
It was a good group but then John Cavanaugh (Prime Time) bridged up and a few of us got it together to bring that back quickly. Once together, we saw the break up the road. We kept them in front of us but right before the feed zone, a group of 20 caught us including Duane and Gardie. We hit the climb, we popped some guys, and we caught the break. Over the top with a lap to go there were about a dozen guys. Only two more caught on and as we came toward town, I got in a few attempts with Alex Osborne and Courtney but things came together with our pack of about 14 heading into the sprint prime. That is when Hunter Z decided to ride his bike right into Max and Hunter’s pedals caught Max’s spokes which ended Max’s race and ruined his expensive race wheel. Hunter didn’t look back in his sprint for the prime. Later, he shrugged it off as if it was all part of the race.
We went up the first Stage climb strong and then down the hill in a long line. I hate that descent and got behind the one other guy who hated it more. When we hit the bottom, the leaders were 100 yards up the hill and going. I had to push hard to get around the destruction going on behind them and then cresting the top closed to within about 10 secs of the 5-man break forming.
This is where I had to make a decision. Try to catch them down the hill or ride in with whoever came up behind me and give up a chance to be in the final selection. I went for it and caught them at the bottom (in 2011, I lost contact with the 3-man break here so I was eager to do it right this time!). I couldn’t believe it. Especially since there were cars and trucks and bikes all over that road. It probably helped to slow those guys down a bit but it was also a pain for me. We rotated well all the way along Hwy 84 and hit the climb together well ahead of anyone else in our race.
I was feeling great to be in this group and if I had a pen would have tried for a few autographs. I went as hard as I could and fortunately was able to watch the race unfold with Metcalfe leading Cale, Dirk and Susco duking it out, Hunt dangling off them and just out of reach of me. Cale came around Metcalfe for the win; Dirk closed to a bike length on Metcalfe while Susco was easily 4th. I followed John Hunt in by about 15 secs and then turned to see Holger come in a minute or two later with the next couple guys.
It was real fun today. I was impressed with all of our guys on the team. How fun is it to have 7 guys in the front pack after one lap? I think we did well as a team and each of us had good opportunities to race how we wanted. We always had at least one or two guys right up there at the front (or off the front). I felt like Max was riding fantastic and have absolutely no doubt that he would have been in our 6-man final selection if it weren’t for a very unsafe maneuver that knocked him out of the race with a lap to go.
Official results: http://www.usacycling.org/results/index.php?permit=2013-516
Date: June 2, 2013
TT race reports, I know it doesn’t get much more exciting than this!
Dunlap TT & TTT by Chris Phipps
In years past, the individual TT was the main event at the Steve Dunlap Memorial Time Trial, but this year with the Team Time Trial being part of the Premier Series and serving as the NCNCA Championships meant the ITT would just be a hard warm-up for those who felt the need to do both.
The ThirstyBear Cycling team of Ken Gallardo, Phil Hynes, Alan Nevin and myself were going for the TTT championship in the 35+ 1/2/3 group against strong teams from Folsom Bike, Safeway and Mike’s Bikes.
I was the only one of us to do a “warm-up” ITT and decided to enter the P/1/2 rather than masters to give me a little more recovery before the TTT. The course had been shortened to 27K from last year’s 30K and I didn’t really know what to expect for a time, but was aiming for 35:00 based on my 27K split from 2012. The wind was from the north this year though, so it would be easy heading out and the last 10K would be real hard into the wind. I started 6th out of the 9 in our group and it went very well for me catching my 30, 60 and 90 second men and crossing the line in 35:00.3. I felt I had paced my effort right and held my position, so I just had to wait for race favorite Jonathan Teeter (Marc Pro Strava) to finish to see if my time would hold up and when he came in at 35:33 I was sure I had it. Jonathan told me he didn’t know they had shortened the course, so he had left a bit in the tank.
1. 1. Chris Phipps – ThirstyBear Cycling 35:00.3
2. 2. Jonathan Teeter – Marc Pro Strava 35:33.9
3. 3. Ariel Herman – Metromint Cycling 35:53.9
Onto the TTT. This would be tough since the 4 of us hadn’t practiced together and I knew that whoever was on my wheel wouldn’t get much draft benefit. We decided to go with the order of: Phipps, Hynes, Gallardo, Nevin. We would try to keep all 4 of us together as long as possible, hopefully for the whole first half, but knew that we needed to finish with at least 3. We also planned to take longer pulls, of at least 20-30 seconds with me pulling a little longer rather than a constant rotation. We started with a short cross wind section and all took a pull to get into the correct order. In the long 10K tailwind section we were flying at 55+ kph and taking nice smooth turns, but then turned right into a tough crosswind from the right. We were really getting blown and I was leaning heavily into the wind. Unfortunately after a few turns we lost Phil and were down to just 3 so now we had to be extra careful not to have one of us blow up.
I took a lot of long pulls into the headwind section with Ken riding 2nd and not getting much shelter from me. Ken & Alan pulled through when they could to give me a breather and that really helped. The wind had picked up and we really had to push to keep it at 37-38 kph. We crossed the line and had to play the waiting game to find out how we did, but we knew it would be close. Then the results were posted and we had won by 9 seconds over Folsom Bike with Safeway coming in 3rd! This was really great to have a district championship to share with teammates, awesome work guys!
ThirstyBear Cycling Tanya Fredricks & Leila Cavanaugh push hard up to finish 2nd and 3rd at Mt. Hamilton NCNCA Championship
Finishing 3rd, 4th and 6th ThirstyBear Cycling dominates the Mt. Hamilton District Championship 45+123
Except for the wet roads going to the top, it was a perfect day to race the Biggest Hill in the Bay Area.
ThirstyBear Cycling Piers Barry strikes for the 3rd time to take 1st at Mt. Hamilton RR District Championship 35+4
Who: Piers Barry, Richard Bolt, CJ Wolf
Chris Phipps leads the way to the podium for ThirstyBear Cycling at Mt. Hamilton Road Race NCNCA Championship, Masters 40-44
Mt. Hamilton Road Race – NCNCA Championship, Masters 40-44
By: Chris Phipps (ThirstyBear Cycling)
ThirstyBear Teammates: Ken Gallardo, Greg McQuaid, Alan Nevin
Before this race I put a lot of thought into which wheelset to use. My lightest wheels (Zipp 303s) would be best on the climb, my Bontrager RXL tubeless would be best for the steep descent and my Bontrager Aeolus 5 d3 were my most aero and would be best for the final 40 miles into the headwind and since that’s where the race is won or lost, I went with those. When we arrived and it was drizzling, I kind of wished I had my tubeless, but thankfully the descent ended up being dry.
The race plan was for me to attack on the last 5K of the main climb and hopefully after the descent, we would have 3 or 4 of us in the selection, then from there would try attacking & counter attacking to get one of us away solo or with one other rider from Folsom since they were the big team with 6 riders.
The race started off with Greg feeling good and setting a hard tempo for the whole 1st 25 min of the main climb. This probably wasn’t the best thing to help his chances later in the day, but it was great for us to keep anyone from attacking and tire some guys out before the last part of the climb. On the short middle section of the climb, Nathan Parks (Folsom Bike) put in a hard attack, that really strung out the field and popped a few guys, but all the key guys were still there.
As we started the last 10K of the climb, the steepest part, Ken was setting a hard pace along with Todd Bell from Morgan Stanley, then as it started to kick up I launched an attack. Parks quickly got to my wheel and I could see the rest of the field was coming back, so I put in another hard dig & broke free. After about 30 seconds I looked back & had a gap & was able to ride my own pace the rest of the way and take the KOM. I had about 45 seconds on the chase at the top and I think the descent went well since only Jason Boynton (Folsom Bike) caught me on the way down and we were joined by Andres Gil (Michael David Winery) and Scott Bromstead (Barclay’s Racing) as we crossed Isabel Creek. The 4 of us had about 30 seconds on a chase group of 6 which included Ken, 2 Folsom Bike (Parks & Bryant) and defending national champ Matt Carinio (Art’s Cyclery. The 4 of us worked together and our advantage grew to over a minute by the feedzone climb (thanks to Alan’s wife Tracy for the feed!) where we lost Bromstead & were down to 3. With a headwind all the way to the finish, there was really no good place for an attack and the race came down to a sprint. I was actually in the ideal position heading into the final 200M 3rd wheel behind Boynton & Gil, but I got impatient and jumped 1st with 200M to go. I got a small gap and for a few seconds thought I might take it, but reality set in with 100M to go as Gil went by me for the win and Boynton for 2nd.
In the chase group, Dan Bryant attacked out of it for 4th with Carinio winning the sprint for 5th. Ken finished 9th, Alan 15th and Greg in 27th. Throw in the 40 mile “cooldown” back to the car and we were all ready for an IPA (thanks Greg!)