Beer me, Marge!
Colorado Bike Law Federal Center Circuit Race, Lakewood, CO, July 25, 2009 Race Report
On Saturday, Bill Brant, Joe Paulson, and John Talley represented the Vic's Espresso team in the 45+ Federal Center Circuit Race, contested this year in sunny, warm, and breezy conditions on a slightly modified course. With even more corners added, it seemed like the world's longest criterium.
It was also the final race in the Steamworks Cup series, rewarding the rider with the best results from races in three different disciplines with their weight in beer. After the first two races (Lookout Mountain hillclimb and HALO time trial), Burt Henry held a significant lead, but he wasn't able to make the final race, so it was up to Joe to try to claim the beer.
The attacks started early in the race, and an attentive Bill covered several moves. JT then was able to get into a number of breaks, allowing Bill and Joe to camp at the front on the wheels of the chasers. A long solo break by Great Divide's TT specialist Jim Dickerson was reeled in by a hard chasing Jimmy Gibson of the Mix1 team early in the final lap, setting the stage for a field sprint.
With two corners to go, Bill, JT, and Joe were lined up near the front, ready to start the blue lead-out train, when Scott Soden of Great Divide launched from in front of Joe. Joe knew Scott wouldn't be able to carry it to the line, but figured marking Scott would keep the field at bay, and jumped on his wheel.
As they approached the final turn, Joe bided his time in 2nd, realizing how long the finish straight is. He was just getting ready to jump, when Karl Keister blazed by in the inside gutter countering his teammates set-up, with an opportunistic Christopher Stout in his draft. Joe launched immediately around the turn, and was able to close down a fading Karl quickly, but Chris had a big gap and wasn't slowing. It's a good thing the finish straight is so long, because it took almost all of it for Joe to pull along side Chris, then eak out just a little more top end to beat him to the line for the win. JT was also able to get around Karl to grab the 3rd and final podium spot.
The win locked up the Steamworks Cup, and Joe was weighed on their nifty balance beam scale, where it was established that he weighs in at 4 and 1/2 cases of beer. He picked up another case for the win, and JT scored a 6 pack for 3rd, so even after each of the boys took home a sampler, and Joe dropped off a case for the crack mechanics at U-Bikes, there was plenty of suds left for the annual end-of-season team party.
However, it turned out that there were more Blue beer winnings to come. Bill lined up again shortly after the 45+ open finish to race again in the 45+ Cat 4 race, where he won a beer prime, then went on to grab another case by winning the race! Start planning now to attend the season-ending festivities!
Race Results Co. Bike Law Federal Center Circuit Race