This crit is 98% as cool as Snake Alley--it's missing switchbacks and cobbles. Other than that, it's perfection.
Today was difficult, but manageable. We started at 11:30 am before the Women's and Men's pro race, so the course was just begining to get crowded with spectators. The pace started out high, but it looked as if Fred, me, and Jared were all in the lead group after the first lap up Chilkoot hill.
BAM!--another blown tubular went behind me on the first lap downhill. Wow people--when it's over 90 degrees outside, you don't put 160 psi in your tires! Unfortunately Fred was behind the crash and had to put a foot down--so his race was all about chasing after lap 1.
Soon enough with Saskonet and VMG drilling Chilkoot hill each lap the lead group dwindled down to about 10 riders. I was feeling real good with 15 min to go. Then a bit of asthma kicked in--I thought it was mild at first, but by the final lap I was wheezing pretty loud. To tell you the truth, I would've yelled at me if I were another rider in that lead group. Dan Ajer's "Dude, just give up man, just throw in the towel," would have been a perfect thing to say.
Somehow it didn't happen though, and I used the downhill to chase back on the last lap before the hillclimb finish. I was breathing real loud, but I knew I could sprint--sure enough, I went from 10th to 6th on the hill sprint. Not bad. Fred managed to salvage 20th after almost crashing first lap.
I'll figure this asthma thing out ASAP and get it on for Ohio and Superweek. The legs feel great, and the confidence is slowly increasing.