Monday, May 28, 2007
Going into the race, the kidlets layed out a plan to put Garden on the top step of the podium... it was a pretty simple one: TK, AWfoSho, and Staz would cover the front and make sure that nothing threatening got away, Davitamon was the set up guy, making sure Garden was delivered to the last corner in the right spot, El Gigante was the sweep. His job was to make sure that Garden's wheel was clear and concurrently do his best to finish behind Garden but in front of Joel Shaffer.
Everything went according to plan, until 4 to go... TK was up the road with Micah Herman, AWfoSho threw a wet blanket on anything that tried to roll away from the field and mount a chase, Davitamon babysat Garden in the group and El Gigante took up his position on Garden's wheel...
Joel, riding exactly as he should have been, pretty much mirrored Garden in the group.
With four to go, Joel and El Gigante came together behind Garden. I've heard two versions of the story... El Gigante claims he had the wheel and Joel made a move to take it. Bars bumped and El Gigante put his elbow out to defend the space. Joel moved away from the elbow, unfortunately, into the wheel of the rider on his other side... Joel, as I've heard second hand, claims that he was riding close to El Gigante, but not trying to move him off the wheel, when El Gigante put the elbow out.... I'm not sure which is the truth, probably some combination of both stories... the bummer is that the contact broke a spoke on Joel's wheel causing it to go out of true and the brake to rub... 4 to go, no free laps...
I don't think anybody felt worse after the race than Joel, but El Gigante was a close second... he spent the remaing laps of the race with Joel, even pushing him along as he fought the rubbing brake.
We knew there would be a fight for Garden's wheel during the race. It was the most sound tactic for both AMD and DBCJRT. We did stress safety though. AWfoSho, who never backs down, backed off a battle with Joel for the wheel at one point in the interest of safety. We wanted Garden's win to be clean, not flawed by a mechanical or other incident. We wanted to see the boys sprint it out for the win.
All of the DBCJRT boys, myself included, hope that Joel and AMD understand that it was just racing and not in any way planned or malicious.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
The phone rang ealier today with news from Panoche. Laundry took home his third state championship in the 15/16 road race. My math should be correct on this one... Laundry won the road race title as a 13 year old, the crit title as a 14 year old, and now the road race title as a 15 year old. I believe that makes three, but it is hard to count my fingers as they flutter over the keyboard.
I think DBCJRT owns 10 state championships amongst the current riders... Alexis Braun is a state TT champion, Dishes is also a state TT champion, Laundry has the three listed above, El Gigante has a state TT championship, and AWfoSho has two crit titles, a road race title, and a TT title. Let's get some more in the next couple of weeks.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
And all that man juice was flowing thanks to TK and Davitamon toilin' away on the front...
Joan Anton took the photo of the JPS podium in 2004... that shot cracks me up. AWfoSho, Juge and Brian Larson may not be all grown up yet, but they've come a long way since Joan was snapping away at the Albany Crit. Thanks for the memories JA...
Jim Kuphaldt gets credit for the two more recent pics...
Sunday, May 13, 2007
For the first half of the prosey race TK patrolled the front, keeping things under wrap like a Christmas present on December 23rd, while Davitamon sat side by side with AWfoSho making sure his sprinter had everything he needed and stayed neatly tucked out of the wind. It was during the second half of the battle that TK and Davitamon really started flying the DBCJRT colors...
With 11 to go the Safeway machine started playing their cards, sending one of their boys up the road and growing his solo effort to over 35 seconds... far enough ahead to be out of sight on that twisty little number of a race course in Rancho. AWfoSho sent TK to the front with 9 to go to bring him back. TK sat up there all breathin' hard and sweatin' while the Safeway boys played blocky-block at second and third wheel. After 5 laps TK had the break hoverin' round about 10 seconds before AWfoSho sent Davitamon up front to drive in the final nail. With 3 to go Davitamon finished pounding and the field was back together but on the verge of splitting up as 80 minutes of riding in circles began to take its toll. 2 to go and TK had just enough gas left in the tank to put AWfoSho into the front group of a rapidly disintigrating field. The single file line had more holes than a slice of swiss cheese that's been nibbled on by a few little critters... pert darn near perfect...
With just over 1 to go Safeway's Dan Martin, fresh off his win in the proseys at Cat's Hill, shredded what was left of the field like some kind of infomercial cheese grater as he launched himself into orbit. Pedaling head down and all hard-like across the start/finish, Martin had about 8 seconds on a small chase group containing Eric Riggs. Like a good 'coon dog, AWfoSho was hot on Martin's heels at about 10 meters. And then that sneaky little devil kidlet of mine began to play games... a quick check under his arm told AWfoSho that Riggs was in pursuit and coming fast with an 'I'm gonna win this thing grin' on his face. Some cat sportin' EMC colors was all cross-eyed and latched onto Riggsy like pitbull. AWfoSho made contact with the uber bagboy and pulled through after pausing just long enough to fill the lungs with a quick shot of O2.
Lil' devil trick #1: AWfoSho didn't drive it once he came through, instead he played all spent-and-plumb-tuckered-out-like while waiting for Riggs and his pitbullish companion to make the junction. Once aboard, Riggs hesitated only a few seconds before throwing his cards down and firing his shot at the day's glory. There goes the gappy-gap...
AWfoSho has bigger heuvos than I would if I were thrust into the same situatation...
Lil' Devil trick #2: AWfoSho, still feigning an empty tank, patiently waited for Safeway and EMC to throw a wet blanket on Riggsy's move before latching onto the back in position perfecto, 4th out of the final corner...
With a tailwind sprint and junior gears I thought that was it. 4th would be a good result. AWfoSho had other ideas.
Jesse Moore of Moore Performance has had the kidlets doing little gear sprints all season long, working on that elusive leg speed. Today it paid off. I was too intent on watching gaps and who was coming around whom that I missed it, but El Gigante said big bro's legs seemed to be all coiled up spinnin' twice as fast as the other three guys...
As if the Klingons were hot on his tail with the gamma ray all juiced up and ready to fire, AWfoSho somehow kicked that 52x14 into warp factor 6 and won going away... enough of a gap to sit down and salute across the line as he tasted glory for the first time in a prosey race! I wouldn't know, but can't resist the How sweet it is comment... Musta been pretty sweet cause AWfoSho was grinnin' like a teenage boy on prom night when he came back around after doing the coolio lap.
Davitamon, despite all the work he did to get AW to the right place at the right time, dragged himself to a ninth place spot, just inside the money, and TK, looking all cooked and ready to be eaten with his jersey unzipped and a cheshire grin on his face, rolled across the line dead last, but took home a pretty little paycheck for all his sweatin' and slavin'...
I'm tellin' ya, these kids will sell themselves down the road for their teammates. I love it!!! Now if I could just get them to mention their equipment sponsors in post race interviews along with their teammates' names I'd really be learnin' 'em how to be all pro-like... like the boys of NASCAR who always mention their Lowe's Chevrolet and how good it was! But... it's probably hard to remember all that kind of stuff when your grinnin' like a teenage boy on prom night!
Friday, May 11, 2007
DBC Elite team members and Aggies extraordinaire finished fourth in Kansas today. They were only 24 seconds off the pace in the men's division one TTT. Tyler Dibble, Zach Kimsey, Shawn Rosenthal, and Stephen Dey put in a good ride, but ended up in the hole. Their four spot combined with the Aggie women's two spot will leave them battling from behind for a repeat of last years stars and bars... Fort Lewis won both the men's and the women's team sufferfest today, giving them quite the leg up for the omnium. Unless they have their eye on individual championships, all they have to do is ride to defend their points lead and their own stars and bars should be in the bag. As for the Aggies... they are gonna have to go on the offensive in both the crit and the RR if they hope to make up the huge chunks of points that they need.
Bazerkeley in the early am tomorrow... AWfoSho says his legs feel good, but we're gonna keep him reigned in to insure that he gets some good quality miles, especially with guys like Barry Wicks lining up to take on the three bears. After an aborted attempt in the proseys at Cat's Hill, TK is staring his first real test in the face after his little jaunt to Europe. Myself, I'm looking forward to seeing how he is going. Hopefully he's still got several handfuls of that early season form left. El Gigante and Laundry are straight off a three day field trip to Ashland, OR. It'll be interesting to see how their legs respond. We rode El Gigante hard before he left, so we might see a little mini-peakage. As for the15/16's, I'd like to say I'm confident in Garden, but I'm a little worried about all them Disco climbers... if they get their act together even Garden's fine form may not be enough to contain them.... still, if the Discos can't get individual accolades out of their heads and ride like a team, Garden has a fair shot. Staz is a bit under the weather, but will still be hunting points in the 17/18 affair. My pick for that war... Bryan Larsen ahead of the pure climbers.
And, Golden State on Sunday... not much to say 'bout this one. 80 minutes for the big boys. That'll be the longest crit most of our kidlets have seen, still with the field split between the Gold diggers and the Amercana chasing Steinbeckers, the dbcjrt kiddos might be able to scratch together a decent result. Golden State will also see Davitamon back in the battle. After a few weeks of solid training, he should have a little pent up racer-type aggression to play out.
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
Garden put himself atop the podium at Cat's Hill on Saturday and again at the Clo-terium on Sunday... That's double hot, and well deserved. This kid is training hard and religious like... Jesse is gonna have him flying come July for that little trip we are taking to PA.
SATs... that little old test kept most of our 17/18 contigent on the sideline this weekend. But look out college, ready or not, here they come!
Sprintervals... What is the best kind? Is it the little gear job that comes at the end of an ME effort? Perhaps it is the rush to the county line? Or is it the one that comes at the end of a long group ride? In my humble opinion it is the one that comes at the intersection of Midway and Cantelowe Roads... See, there is this not so little dog that lives there abouts that has a wicked vertical leap. Clears barbed wire in a single bound and without missing a step. He's been hot on my wheel the last few times I've been cruisin' around his local. I haven't been able to determine how long he can go yet. He always stops after a well placed water bottle to the face, but up until he is within spitting distance, he's gaining on me all slobbery and snarlin' like... I'll be comin' around Mr. LaBerge if the dog catcher don't show up soon.
Two crits on dia day las mamacitas (I stole that from Olaf Vanderhoot, but couldn't resist). Golden State is the close one, gotta travel to hit Steinbeck. It's tempting to make the trip all the way to Salinas simply to hear Mike Hernandez MC as we bike racers types ride in circles... Alas the kidlets will be turning their pedals in anger in Rancho... guess I'll have to settle for my daily dose of verbage on MH's bloggy blog.
Bazerkeley Hills on Saturday... it's so close, but so far away... somehow this race has escaped our attention over the last 5 years. Not this time... AWfoSho is throwin' it to the lions in the prosey race... El Gigante will be workin'-n-slavin' to protect Garden's point series lead in the 15/16's... Staz will be huntin' points in the 17/18's. Rumor has it that The Tapinator, Laundry, and Dishes will be doing the dance up the three bears as well. Last weekend we put four of the kiddos on the podium, crossing the fingers that we can do the same on the upcoming...
oh, Riki gets credit for the Cloterium Podium shot...
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