With a strong Marc Pro-Strava contingent in Madera for the weekend, Art Rand, Keith Hillier and I decided to head south to give ourselves a go at the Central Coast Circuit race. Our plan was the same thing we’ve been doing all season; be aggressive and get in moves.
Attacks started pretty early and didn’t stop until Art got away somewhere on the first lap. Keith soon bridge up while I sat in the peloton, content with having two teammates in the 7-man breakaway. I was able to get a free ride the next few laps, letting the other riders in the chase wear themselves out. Just as we crested a small roller, as the gap had reached 1 minute, I gassed it across the flats dropping all but Robbie Franscioni (Bay Bikes). After one lap of chasing, I dropped the Franscioni and continued my bridge. Finally, two laps later I made it onto the back of the break; just as we got the card for two laps to go.
Soon after I rolled onto the back, I was greeted by Rand Miller (Webcor/Alto Velo) who said, “Come on, let’s go. I know if you just rode across to us you can ride off again. Let’s go.” I responded with the first thing that came to mind, “That would just insulting if I just rode across that gap and then win the race.” The next two laps were spent with Art and Keith attacking and counter-attacking, and the three of us getting heckled by Rand (which seriously makes bike racing WAY more fun.) Between his on-the-bike comments and his blogging, the guy has some serious creative skills.
With about 1 km to go, Art launched an attack, forcing others to chase. I rode up to Keith and told him to get on my wheel. I jumped on Elliot Jaramillo’s (McGuide Cycling Team) and let him lead out the sprint. I came around him at 200 meters with the plan to lead out Keith, but lucky for me, he (and no one else) ever came around. Keith rolled in second with Rand Miller taking third.
Thanks to CCCX for putting on a great event. Relaxed, organized promoters and fast results.