Ohio Spring Racing Series #1 Race Report
Category : Race Reports
Our team had a great first race of the spring out in Oxford on Sunday. We had Steve finishing on the podium at the first race of the season with a 3rd place finish and our first time where all guys on our team were in the same race. Here is a full race report with the details of Sunday’s competition.
Temperatures were in the mid 30’s at the start of the race, the sun was shinning bright and the wind had a bit of a bite. We lined up for 4 laps with close to 50 other racers ready to take on the 4 corner course that included 2 moderately difficult climbs. These climbs were nothing we are going to see next week at Lake Hope but they were leg burners. Our team struggled to find the staging area but after receiving our third direction we rolled up to the staging area with 2 minutes to the gun. This wasn’t ideal for our team as we typically like to be near the front of the group but it wasn’t a huge concern. After the start, Mike was able to make his way to the top 10 during the first lap and stay there for the first two laps. On the first lap one rider from an unknown team made the decision to try to take on the wind by himself and went on a flier. He stayed away until the pack caught him at the start of the 4th and final lap. Neil and Dave were stuck further back in the pack and during the 2nd lap were able to move their way through the group to find the front part of the pack. Dave took to the font of the group to up the pace and go on the attack. With little help from other teams no gap was created and Dave linked back up with the main group. Steve was analyzing the course from the back of the pack waiting for the right time to make his move.
The pace was rather steady with surges up the hills each time. The back end of the course forced the riders to drive directly into a strong headwind. On the third lap, Mike was put into a bit of difficulty on the first hill and was kicked off the back of the main group. He put in a significant effort to latch back onto the pack with a bit of help from Steve Q. It was on that same lap where Dave, riding with the main group, hit one of the massive pot holes, cracked his rim, and forced him to finish his day with a DNP.
On the 4th lap, the breakaway rider was caught and the lead group contained all 3 of our remaining riders. Once again Mike was kicked off the back on the first hill and worked with another rider to catch back onto the lead group. Once the main group hit the headwind section that lead to the finish line Mike and his new friend were within 100 meters of latching back onto the group when one of the riders in the lead group hit the gas pedal. The main group then split into two groups with Steve jumping on with the leaders. Neil didn’t have the positioning to stay with the main group attached his group to bridge the gap. His effort wouldn’t be rewarded as the lead groups pace as just to intense. Steve felt right at home with the lead group as they hit the final hill. Pushing his lungs to the limit Steve was able to sprint to the line taking 3rd place. Neil out sprinted everyone in the second group across the line to take a solid 20th place and Mike finished about 30-40 seconds behind this group to take 29th.
It was a good start to the season for the team. A bit of a tough day for Dave and Dan who both got DNP’s due to a mechanical and a bit of a stomach bug but overall it was a great day. Who can argue with sunshine, mild temperatures, and bike racing in Ohio during March? Not this team!