Pictures of the race thanks to Ken Gallardo.
A HUGE hanks to Aaron for hosting and organizing an amazing ride and great fun BBQ party with friends and family!! Lets make it a ToC tradition…
Organic Brew from ThirstyBear – Cold beer after a long ride makes for the best sponsors a team can have.
View the entire photo stream from this epic ride and BBQ:
Quick video of today’s Stage of the ATOC at Muir Beach Overlook. Strong support local hero Nate English.
Modesto Road Race
Masters 45+ 1/2/3
About 50 guys. Hot and windy. Six laps, 60 or so miles. No teammates.
This was my first race back after a yoga-injury earlier this year that had me off the bike for almost three months. Fucking yoga.
Hunter Ziesing told me before the race that he and Chris Courtney were going to try and split the field any chance they got, given the many crosswind sections. And sure enough, from the gun, Hunter and a few others attack. I pause and wait for wheels to jump on, knowing that my fitness is not so good, and this happens several times in the first three laps.
I’m starting to feel all the surges and I let the next break go. Sure enough it’s got most teams represented, and I just don’t feel strong enough to bridge up to it. There’s 10 guys in the break, and they just start pulling away and no one is responding. It probably takes us a lap to get organized and figure out who doesn’t have someone in the break. It turns out Kouvaris and Cortex don’t, so 2 Cortex, 2 Kouvaris, 1 other guy (can’t remember his team) and I start working well together.
The break is 45 seconds up the road and we just hold that. It goes up and down, 35 to 45 seconds for two laps. I’m skipping pulls every third or fourth time ‘cause my back’s cramping. I’m telling one of the Cortex guys, I’m not going to be able to keep this up much longer. And then in the confusion of passing other fields and dropped riders, suddenly we’re right on them. They were surprised to see us again. Hunter did say after the race that some of the guys were talking about how everyone was represented, so no one would be chasing.
With only one lap left I start to think oh, I can totally hang on for another lap. Shut up, back.
The whole last lap I’m just hanging on to the surges and hoping I can hang on for a sprint. Every acceleration I’m getting gapped and then I just decide that if I let this gap get any bigger, it’s just over, so I manage to close them down. Once I get to a couple K to go, I realize that this is going to come down to a sprint, and I’m going to be able to hang on and do whatever it takes.
From the previous laps, I knew that it needed to be a patient sprint given the headwind. I wouldn’t want to be too close to the front in the final 90-degree left-hand turn, which leaves you with 800 meters dead-straight to the finish.
So going into that final left, I slid back a few spots into about 10th position and just waited patiently while guys were drilling it on the front, into the wind. After the first few guys burned out, I was about 5thwheel when we got inside 100 meters, and I just pulled out into the wind and gave it everything I had. To my surprise I was pulling around all the guys, expecting guys to come shooting around me because it didn’t feel like the best sprint, but I got it by about half a bike-length.
Results page: http://www.usacycling.org/results/?permit=2013-1423
30 miles solo break victory to ThirstyBear Cycling Piers Barry. Eric Lagier wins the hill climb sprint and finish 2nd.
Piers Barry taking great victory after 30 miles solo break.
Race: Berkeley Hills Road Race 2013
The next move seemed to be the move that probably would have been the winning break with Passmore and Courtney (SJBC), Roemer (Specialized), Hunt (Giant Strawberry), Osborne (Fast Freddie) John Cavanaugh (PrimeTime), Blake Reed (Arts Cyclery), Cale Reeder (Hammer Nutrition), and myself. Nevertheless, Reeder did not use his wits but his watts instead and drilled it up Papa Bear which caused the break to break, leaving 6 to chase 4 and riding two important teams out of the break.
ThirstyBear Cycling Powerhouse Chris Phipps stays away in the break and take 2nd at Cat’s Hill Classic Crit 2013
World-class bicycle racing again makes its way to Los Gatos on May 4, 2013 for the 40th Annual Cat’s Hill Classic Bicycle Races presented by Mike’s Bikes and the Los Gatos Bicycle Racing Club. Staged among the historic Victorian homes at Tait and Nicholson Avenues just two blocks off North Santa Cruz Avenue in beautiful Los Gatos, CA, the Cat’s Hill Classic Bicycle Race is renowned as one of the most difficult closed circuit cycling races in the United States! Racers repeatedly climb up the challenging 23% grade of “Cat’s Hill” on Nicholson Avenue and complete the mile-long neighborhood loop with a 50+mph hair-raising descent onto the crowd-lined finishing stretch.
ThirstyBears: Greg McQuaid & Chris Phipps
The day started off as planned with Greg Picking me up at 11AM, which would give us plenty of time to reg & warm-up for our race at 2:15. After we loaded up his car I ran across the street to buy a vitamin water & then hopped back in the car and we were off. Unfortunately, about the time we were at the end of 19th Ave entering Daly City I realized my wallet was missing, so Greg drove us back to my place and had a look around, but no luck. So we were now headed back down about an hour later than planned & I was calling my bank & credit card companies canceling my cards.
After arriving, finding parking, getting numbers & pinning them on we had about 40 minutes before the race. After cruising around a bit and going up a steep climb in the neighborhood I noticed that my shifting wasn’t working very well and I couldn’t get into my 23 or 26 cogs, which would be vital in this race if I wanted to stay in the big ring on the climb. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong, so I went to the Mike’s Bikes (15 min before race!) & they immediately figured out that the stop that holds the cable housing near the rear derailleur had cracked, so the cable housing had been pulled into the frame. They were able to fix it and I was off to the start with 5 min to warm up.
The race was off & I started in the back with Greg around mid pack. Since this was a combined field, we had around 65 starters & I was worried that it would be tough to move up, but I was patient and wanted to move up slow to get warmed up. I moved up around 10-15 riders per lap for the first 4 laps, then was close enough to the front that when Jeromy Cottell (Specialized) attacked at the top of the course I was able to jump across to his wheel. It was a good move because his teammate Kevin Metcalfe was at the front of the pack with everyone on his left & Jeromy attacked up the right side.
We quickly had a few seconds and worked pretty evenly and within a few laps had 20 seconds, then a few laps later had 45 seconds. By this time we were able to throttle back a bit. I wanted to attack to try to solo it in, & gave it a couple tries at the top of the climb, but just didn’t have the pop for that kind of effort. I let Jeromy lead the last half lap hoping to come around him in the sprint, but that didn’t work out too well.
I was happy with 2nd though & glad to see Jeromy get a win since he’s been so aggressive in the races lately. Greg said the pack essentially gave up chasing after a few laps (I was expecting Cale or Dirk to try to bridge across), but was still fast enough to drop about 1/3 of the field. In the sprint, Greg ended up 14th, just a couple places out of the Premier Series points.
Next week it’s onto Berkeley HILLS!
Yes, HILLS & not the Dunnigan “hills”.
Thirsty Bear Team: Hans, Gardie, Scott, Holger.
I hung out with friends a bit long last night and went to bed late. The result, I overslept big time. My plan was to leave the house at 5:50am to be in Livermore by 6:45 to have enough time for the usual preparation including a half hour warm up.
When I stared at the clock still half asleep and saw it was already 6:50 I was very close to throwing the towel and turn around to get another hour of sleep. But something drove me out of the bed that said you got to at least try. Luckily my stuff was all packed, the coffee was already in the coffeemaker, I just needed to jump into my bibs and in the car and off I went.
After 10 minutes of driving I noticed that the “low gas” light had come on. Stopping to get gas was not an option if I wanted to still make it. If the light had just come on when I first saw it, I had a decent change to make it, but it was going to be close. When I filled my tank with 19.3 Gallon after the race I realized how lucky I was to not run out of gas.
By the time I had registered, had visited the porta-potty, put the TWO number on, it was about 8:10. I made it, the race would have to take care of the warm up. When the race started Scott and I rode off the front, but no sign of Hans and Gardie. Seems like my team members had “late issues” too today.
Scott and I kept the pace low at the front in the first half mile hoping Hans and Gardie would still catch on. It only took a few minutes and rocket man Dirk Himley engaged his thrusters to take off. Still being cold I could not chase after him, but 4 riders managed to slip into his draft (Hancock, Eatinger, +2). Shortly after Chris Courtney made an effort to bridge across, but didn’t quite make it.
3 of the riders Dirk pulled cracked on the first hill and got gobbled up by the field shortly thereafter. After we passed the finish area Scott and I went to the front and drove the tempo to try to stay close to the break. After a while Gardie came to the front. It was good seeing that he had caught on. The tempo work got interrupted a few times resulting in a 1:30 minutes lead by Himley and Hancock when we got the first time check. Knowing how strong Dirk rides it was unlikely we’d bring him back unless the field would mount a serious chase effort. But that didn’t happen. Gardie Scott and I stayed close to the front of the race in laps 1 and 2, while Hans, per his plan, rode conservatively further back. Towards the end of the 2nd lap on the approach to the climb as Scott was at the front I used the opportunity to break away. At the start of the climb I had about a 15-20s gap so I decided that I’ll try to go solo. I managed to maintain a consistent effort and my lead kept growing. When I didn’t see the field anymore going up the penultimate Wente climb, I knew I had a good chance to stay away. I pushed on as strong and consistent as I could and before I knew it another lap had gone by.
Shortly before I got to the last climb I approached a group of 7 or 8 riders with 900 number. As I passed the group on the left, without any warning the two riders to my right crashed and almost took me down with them. I couldn’t believe it. After I had passed this unexpected hurdle I went up the hill one last time. I probably could have taken it easy since I had a comfortable lead, but did not want to risk being caught. So I rode as hard as I still could until I crossed the finish. Haven’t had a podium place in a while and was very happy to have managed to go solo for 2+ laps to 3rd place.
About a couple minutes later the chasers arrived. Gardie sprinted into 5th place, Hans got 8th and Scott 15th.
Tough race today!
Ken Gallardo, Greg McQuaid & I headed down to the Sea Otter Classic to test ourselves against the best masters racers in the state and in many cases, the US. There were 3 current national champions in our circuit and road races, Rudolph Napolitano (35-39 RR), Matt Carinio (40-44 RR), and Mike Easter (35-39 Criterium). There were also at least a dozen former national champions in addition to Nor Cal strongmen Dan Martin & Andres Gil and many others. With 7 guys in the race, we knew that Monster Media/MRI would be the team to watch though.
Piers continue his rise in the cat 4s taking 2nd after solo chase for the finish.
Race: Sea Otter Classic Road Race 35+ Cat 4