Monday, August 29, 2011

Eugene Celebration - Criterium

The final stage of the race.

My teammate had secured the overall GC with a 51 second lead heading into the criterium. Our basic plan was to try and mark attacks for the duration of the 45 minute race, then try and set me up over the last three laps to try and sprint for the win.

For the most part the Crit went as a normal crit goes...lots of attacks, fairly high speeds and a little sketchy riding here and there.

Heading into the 2nd corner on the 3rd to last lap, I hear the sounds of metal scraping on the road and knew there was a crash behind me. Knowing that our team leader was going to be moving back to just get a pack finish my first thought was...I hope he wasn't in that.

When we came around with 2 laps to go...sure enough, there he was running down the road carrying his bike....CRAP!

I was still in OK position, but as we entered came down the front straight the pace slowed and we were overtaken by most of the peloton so my position was lost. By the time we came around the 2nd corner I was near the back and in no position to contest the sprint.

In the end, this was probably a good thing, having hit the pavement "Hard" two weeks ago and seeing my teammate go down in the crit, I decided to shut it down and come in with the pack and not try risking a good placement at the cost of more pain.

Thankfully the gave our team leader same time as the pack since the crash was in the last 3 laps so he was able to keep his overall GC win. With that said...his bike is "Toast". He had a Cervelo S3 but broke his head tube, seat tube and down tube. He also broke his front brake, scraped up his shifters and destroyed his Zipp 808 front wheel pulling 3 spokes out and getting a crack in the rim that goes about 1/3rd the way around the rim. He was a little scrapped up with road rash on his hip and elbows but other than that came out of it in fairly good shape.

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