Nature Valley-Amateurs Rule at Mankato & Tip of the Day

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Okay. Before anything to do with bike racing. The tip of the day or week-if you’ve lost/broke your phone charger or computer charger, all you need to do is go to a hotel and say that you left your charger there. They’ll bring you out a huge selection of chargers. Nokia, Apple, etc. Virtually every hotel has a million in their lost and found and want to get rid of any/all of them.

Bike racing. Mankato road race was really weird today. Ouch and Bissell had no desire to control the race. It was one big 80 mile loop and then 4 laps of a 3 mile course with a 1 km hard hill. There was virtually no wind. The race started out pretty quick. Lots of attacks and we were rolling along at 30+ mph. Lots of times way faster. Eventually 16 guys rolled off the front. Ouch only had one rider, Tim Johnson in the break. Bissell had 2. Colavita 1. Jelly Belly 1. Type 1 1. Not a good combination for anyone. But, no one in the field wanted to take control. Eventually the break had nearly 9 minutes. And they weren’t even working together. We were riding alone at less than 20 mph for quite awhile. Finally, the Cicilismo Amateur Team from Ft. Collins put their riders at the front to try to protect their jersey of best amatuer for Nick Frey. They weren’t doing any damage to the field, but were slowly taking time out of the break.

We hit the finish circuits nearly 3 minutes back, but the break had split into pieces. The “Pros” in the break didn’t make the front split. Not one Ouch, Bissell, Colavita, Type 1, or Jelly Belly rider was their. I’m not sure what that was all about. We went up the hill the pretty half assed the first two times. But, it shattered what was left of the field. I was feeling pretty good, but was starting to cramp. And it was barely in the 80’s. I attacked after two laps, but realized soon that it was a huge mistake. I was starting to cramp more. I was gapped alittle the third time up the climb and barely reattached just in time to get shelled for good the last time up. I finish 50 something seconds back. Ben Raby was up front all day and just got caught at the top of the climb the last time. He finished 10th and moved into 2nd in the King of the Mountain competition. Andrew Crater, from Wheel and Spocket won the race. He is pretty stealthy and it was nice to see the “Pro” teams get beaten by a rider that works full time and raced Joe Martin in the 1-2 division. These “Pro” teams should be embarrassed that their destiny at this race was protected by a local Colorado team protecting the lead of the best amateur jersey. Some pros.

So, tomorrow is the deciding stage. Rory Sutherland, Ouch, is 7 seconds behind Tom Zirbel, Bissell. Sebastian Haedo is 10 seconds back on Zirbel. There are time bonuses of 15, 10 , 5 for the first three places. It will be interesting to see who tries to control the race. Not sure where I’d put my money this time. Probably still on Ouch, but if it comes down to a field sprint up the wall, I’d have to pick Haedo. I was riding beside him twice today and was counting his cadence. It is nuts. Both times I counted, he was pedalling over 130 rpm’s. Competely upbelievable. I don’t have anything to even comment on it because I don’t understand it at all.

Tomorrow should be an interesting day. Super good day if you’re a spectator. 20 times up a 18% grade. Pretty hard criterium to say the least.

One thought on “Nature Valley-Amateurs Rule at Mankato & Tip of the Day

  1. kimwest

    your tip of the day is worth the cost of admission. thanks for that, and great riding at nature valley. i see from the final GC that they DO have you placed, so you’re apparently not a dnf.
    see ya down the road somewhere.


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