Your browser (Internet Explorer 7 or lower) is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites. Learn how to update your browser.


Double Podium for Holger & Lyons at Pescadero RR 45+

Fantastic Finish by Holger and Tom supported by a strong ThirstyBear Team.
Fantastic Finish by Holger and Tom supported by a strong ThirstyBear Team.

I think everyone who raced Pescadero today or in years past would agree that this race is definitely one of the more demanding ones on the race calendar. There’s not really an easy section on the 28 mile lap which race groups traverse 2.7 times. Climbs, technical descends, and wind are the main ingredients on this fun and exciting course, and so it’s clearly my favorite race of the season.

Fast rewind a couple weeks. After riding 130 miles around Mt. Hamilton I didn’t feel much like riding on Memorial Day and thought I’ll do some weight lifting/squads instead.
Maybe I should have spent more time warming up, but I didn’t and paid for it. I hurt my lower back and the pain gradually got worse every day for the next 7 days. On Monday this week I could not even tie my shoes in the morning, so I decided to give my teammates a heads-up that I may not be able to race Pesky on Saturday. Luckily with a lot of alternating icing and heating I finally saw some improvements and when I got out of bed this morning I was almost pain free.
So with no excuse left, I put my bike in the car, drove to race, and lined up with the M45s and M55s at the start at 9:25. I was happy to see on the drive down to Pescadero that the roads were dry, which turned out to be quite important in the progression of the race.
Team ThirstyBear was represented today by Tom, Scot, Duane, and Shawn in the M45s and Alan in the M55s. Contrary to years past, this year did not feature a Sprint Prime, which led to a bit less speedy start of the race. But this didn’t bother Duane who, as soon as the moto took off, put the hammer down and started the race with break. But with a lot of strong teams and rider represented Duane got caught before we got to the first Stage Rd climb.
The pace in lap-1 including the climbs was fast, but not too demanding. Several attacks were launched mainly by Chronos’s Dan Martin, Steve Ott, or Nick Theobald, but between Tom and myself we had every single one covered. As we got up Haskins the first time I made sure I was close to the front as we went into the descend, mainly to avoid being caught behind not so skillful descenders of which we had a few. As I said earlier, the road was dry so I didn’t use my brakes much. As the road flattened out I found myself with Nick, and Brian Hoadley at the front of the race with an already sizable gap. It didn’t take much discussion to get all three of us on the same page. This was a great break opportunity and we took it.
From here on the rest of the race was riding at a hard and steady pace and sharing the load. The sharing part worked well for half a lap until Nick started to show first symptoms of overload on the second half of 84. From here on he sat on and Brian and I did the work. We figured Nick would freshen up after some draft time and we needed him to fight the wind on Pescadero Rd. The second reason to keep him in the break was that it would keep his strong teammates from chasing. So we set a relatively easy pace going up Haskins, but it wasn’t Nick’s day today and we had to leave him behind and push forward if we didn’t want to get caught right away. When we passed the start area the moto told us we had a 1:30 lead (down from 2:20 in lap-2) to a chase group of 10 riders as we started lap-3. When we later looked back on both of the Stage Rd climbs we could not see a group behind us, which meant we were at least 2min ahead at this point.
Unfortunately after a couple miles on 84 my right leg started to cramp and I had to really concentrate and alternate my pedaling to be able to keep riding. Well, I did make it all the way to the finish, but when it came to mounting a sprint with 200m to go my legs refused to move when I got out of the saddle and so Brian got a gap and took the win. It was great seeing Tom arriving at the finish in 3rd position followed by Craig Upton in 4th. Scot took 8th, which put 3 bears in the top 10.
Holger powering to the top. Photo: JABW Photo:
Holger powering to the top. Photo: JABW Photo:
Thanks to everyone in our great team for supporting my break today. I know it take sacrifice and putting personal goals aside. Sorry my cramping legs couldn’t quite secure the win at the end.
To me it was an awesome day after an uncertain week of recovery.
Best, Holger

Leave a comment