Red Trolley marked my first race of the 2013 season, as well as my initiation into the Masters category? the sun had been out for most of the morning, but the wind was picking up which meant this already technical course was going to require a little more patience and selectivity if the team was going to achieve a good result. This was evident in our team meeting when it was determined that there would be more pressure on myself and the rest of the sprinters if a sustainable break didn’t materialize. compounding matters was the fact that there was a full field for the race. This meant that the break-neck pace driving the peloton into the final climb every 90 seconds had the potential to quickly force any rider to the back putting him in danger of being gapped simply from a loss of focus.
Unfortunately, this full tilt pace combined with the head winds on the final stretch made it nearly impossible to sustain any break and create a significant split. I tried jumping into a break with Tomo Hamasaki and Scott Cohran, but the chase took advantage of the conditions and quickly shut us down.
Putting the back up plan into action, Our final card was set up perfectly for the final lap.
Chris DeMarchi rocketed through to start his flyer. As expected, a couple of guys saw the move and took up the chase. John Abate, Phil Tinstman and I immediately jumped on for the ride. Phil guided me onto his wheel just before the final, violent dive into the last corner. Phil chose the perfect line to carry our speed through the climb and allow me to wait to begin my sprint until we crested. By the time we finished the climb Eric Johnson was on my hip which caused me to start my sprint earlier than anticipated. But with all the work my team had done to put me in this position, I exploded into my sprint with everything I had. it felt like an eternity, but i was able to sustain it to the finish line. It was great to get this win for the team; not a bad way to enter my masters career.