Sunday, May 15, 2011

American Pride, Poolesville, Sprint into Spring

American Pride Crit race report by Emily Joyner
The weather report called for a 40% chance of staying dry, and happily we did. It was sunny and humid and ended up being a great day for a race. The 4-corner course takes riders around Todd Stadium, a Newport News track/football field, with the finish line just under 200 meters (my estimation) after the last left turn. Bike Beat is one of the race sponsors, and to make it even better, today is Ava's birthday, and she had a very large crowd of supporters!!
Women 1,2,3
Emily, photo from American Prid
The race started off fast, with riders attacking aggressively from Tripower, VBVK, FF, and VA Asset Group. Several riders got threatening gaps only to be pulled back by a pelleton, who seemed to be working well together when the break did not suit their team. Eventually a break of five managed to get up the road, and with riders from all teams previously mentioned teams present, it stayed away. Working hard together was Avanell (VA Asset Group), Annette (Tripower), Amanda (FF), Jen (VBVK), and myself.

We all worked well together until the last lap, since we had a big enough gap and no one wanted to be on the front before the sprint. Half way around the course Avanell exploded up the road and I got on her wheel. Half way between turns 3 and 4 I went around Ava, sprinted through the corner and was able to stay in front to the line. Jen finished 2nd, Amanda 3rd, Annette 4th, and Ava placed 5th. I was proud of Ava and stoked for the awesome lead out. Thanks to the promoters for a great day.

Poolesville Road Race Report 
This 42 mile road race in Poolesville, Maryland is a race not for the faint of heart. Most of the course has rolling hills on country roads, but it also includes 1.4 miles of hard packed dirt/gravel road. The condition of the dirt section depends on the recent rainfall, not to mention that the entry to the dirt and gravel comes at a right hand turn at the bottom of a hill. This section of the road has been the source of more than one wreck.
Women's 1,2,3
The gravel road was a factor in the deciding break after a wreck helped 5 women to get a gap on the rest of the field. From our team Erin and Patty together with Lindsay and Monika (XO) and Laurel (Syn Fit) stayed away for the rest of the race and sprinted for the top 5 places. In the end it was, Lindsay for the win followed by her teammate Monika, with Erin taking 3rd place and Patty placing 5th. Amanda (who was caught behind the crash) soloed in for 6th. Great job to everyone!

Sprint into Spring race report by Emily
One of the best crit courses in the area, really fun and fast with nice pavement and a gradual up and down on the Army base at Fort Lee. Thanks to Rostello for a great race with lots of supports from sponsors. The rain held off, again, so we were very happy about the weather.
Women 1,2,3
This was a small but aggressive one with all the local teams accounted for. Julie went out for an attack really early in the race (before the lap board was up) and it seemed like no one wanted to work together to bring her back. Several riders attempted to bridge up but when they saw other riders on their wheels they seemed to loose interest. I guess others must have been thinking there was plenty of race left to get her back, and her gap seemed to be holding pretty steady at about 20 seconds. After one failed bridge and the pace slowed down right before a corner Erin launched off the front and got a gap as she went into the windy section and up the small hill. In a lap she had caught up with Julie and the teammates worked together steadily gaining time on the field. Back in the pack Avanell and I worked hard to keep other attacks from getting away. After many more individuals tried to get up the road one attack did stick with Brenna (Tripower), Jen (VBVK), and I working together for the last 6 laps or so.

In the end, Julie got the win with Erin in second, looking strong and lapping the rest of the field. My group almost got lapped too, but stayed just in front, with me winning the sprint for third place overall. Prizes were WaWa gas cards, which we will be using to take us to Willmington Grand Prix this weekend (sweet).

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