Sunday, June 22, 2008

Team Romps at 2008 State Road Championships

The Subway/Peerless team had participants in the 35+, 35+ cat. 4, 45+, and 55+ Colorado State Road Championships (21 June) and turned in impressive performances across the board. The Rist Canyon course out of Fort Collins both a beautiful and ugly 60+ mile circuit. True Colorado beauty is everywhere; big vistas along the Horsetooth Reservoir, rock formation and cliffs, native grass-lands, green hayfields, aspen and pine forest lined alpine climbs, and streams rushing full with spring runoff. Ugly for all but Colorado's best climbers and rolleurs; a 12 mile 3000' assent up Rist Canyon is punctuated with hard grades, switch backs, and several 12% segments to test ones resolve, descending Stove Prairie Road is fast and technical with a few cattle guards to keep everyones attention, minimal flats and continuous hills keep coming until 4 leg breaker hills are encountered along the Reservoir. The race then mellows for a bit. Climbers are not to fear because the final challenge of Bingham Hill will once again put all but their closest competitors deep in the red zone. From there to the finish all who are left with a hope need something left in the tank for a late surprise attack or sprint finish among very few.

This course is top-notch and only the strongest rider can win.

35+ summary (Brian, JT, - including comment about Bill Brant in 35+ category 4)

45+ summary The Rist Canyon course offered plenty of challenges for the 2008 Colorado Masters Road Championship, but the Subway 45+ squad of Mike Newsome, Joe Paulson, Glenn Sanders, and Dean Sandoval was up to the task at hand. Out of the gate, the initial short, steep hills over the dam put many riders into early discomfort. Once on the main canyon climb, Mike went to the front to set a steady pace, keeping any attackers at bay. Glenn rode comfortably near the front, waiting for the real fireworks to start, as Joe and Dean tried to maintain contact with the leaders as long as possible. When the steep pitches at the top of Rist Canyon separated the contenders from the pretenders, Glenn made the elite selection. Returning to the dam hills, Glenn attacked, drawing out only Karl Kiester. The two worked together over the remaining miles to keep the chasers at bay, then Glenn's experience and tactical sense served him well at the finish, where he maneuvered Karl into jumping first, and came around him to get the state championship victory.

55+ summary (Paul, Barry, Bill) Good size field, but with a few of the notable RR guys missing, but still a tough field. Rio Grande was there in force, so our work was cut out for us.
Nothing much happened in the first 9-10 miles. Once we hit the Rist Canyon climbing, Bob Jones went to the front and kept a hard tempo. We slowly shed most fo the field and by the last few miles, were down to just 5 riders; Bob Jones, Steve Workman, Paul, Bill, and myself. We dropped Steve an the middle 0.8 mile steep section. Bob really went hard at the beginning of the last steep part and gradually dropped all three of us. Over the top and the beginning of the flat/downhill/rolling section towards Masonville, the three of us regrouped and rode tempo slightly behind Bob. He eventually slowed so that we had to catch him. We then began to attack him, with two of us going at a time. On the second or third attempt, Paul and I got away, with Bill sitting on Bob. We kept it rolling, looking for Bill to bridge. Steve Workman shows up instead. We talked with him and agreed to keep it rolling. The turn south at Masonville caught us all of guard, we eased up too much while we ate. Once back through Masonville, we saw that Bill was bridging up to us so we eased off to wait for him. He said he'd been chasing with Bob for over 10 miles so needed some rest. As well rounded one of the reservoir inlets, Mike Meyers shows up. Where'd he come from? I thought we could drop him on the dams since he'd been chasing for so long. wrong, he hung tough. Going over Bingham hill, Steve and Bill had a nice cap, then Paul, then Mike and me. We all are back together as we turn for the 4-5 mile run on Overland trail to the finish. Chris Orton shows up! What is going on, are we that slow/old that we keep getting caught from behind? Now it's 3 on 3. They have two really good diesels and an excellent sprinter. You could see every one's mind working overtime (with a fatigued brain). Chris gets on the front and pulls keeping the pace steady so that we don't attack. About a half mile from the finish, I attack hard on the last little rise on Overland as Chris looks around and slows. I see 500 watts and try to hold as much as I can. Then the watts start dropping by the hundreds. Steve is pulling everyone back! As we approach the turn to the finish, I see Paul, Bill, and Steve only. Great, we're back to 3 on 1. Bill begins leading it out to keep it fast, Steve decides it's time for him to go, which energizes both Paul and I. I go right at the last little turn, Paul goes left. I win, Paul second, and Bill comes in third. A nice sweep over a very good team. We learn later that Mike Meyers had picked up something in a tire about a mile from the finish and was slow leaking. really unfortunate for Mike and Rio Grande. It would have been a much different run in to the finish with him on board.

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