Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Achieving Tranquility...

It seems a bit crazy that the final race of the 2014 Psycowpath series just came and went, as it seems like my cycling season is just reaching full stride. I only made it to a couple events, but the ones I did attend were awesome. The race this past weekend at Tranquility Park in Omaha was no exception. On-time, professional and most importantly, fun! High five to series promoters, Ryan & Roxanne Feagan, and thank you to everyone who volunteered!
As the pack sprints from the line, I slip a pedal... A veteran move. Photo: Jennifer Greer
I raced in the Marathon (4-hour) event, and we had a pretty substantial class at Tranquility. More than 30 racers toed the line, including perennial strong men, Noah Marcus (Greenstreet Velo) and Rafal Doloto (Midwest Cycling-Trek Store), and up-and-comer, Jonathan Wait (Flatwater Cycling/Lincoln Industries). When the gun went off, I messed up clipping into my right pedal, completely slipping off its platform, so I had to sprint to get back to the front as the trail narrowed into singletrack. Fortunately, I went in second wheel behind Rafal, and we immediately set a good tempo. I hadn't planned to lead in the early going, but a slip by Rafal in a switchback corner handed the race lead to me, so I just tried to keep the pace high.

Sprinting back to the front after finally clipping into my right pedal. Photo: Jennifer Greer

Within a lap it was clear there were two contenders in this race, Jonathan and I. It was fun riding with him, as our skills were actually quite different. He comes from a road background, and on the climbs he was just tearing it up. I could pull away from him on the downhills though, so for a while it worked for me to lead. By the time he's catch me, we'd be back on a downhill and I could get again get a gap.
Jonathan Wait stalks me on the first lap. Photo: Jennifer Greer
This only worked for so long however, and eventually Jonathan's stronger legs won out over my gonzo descending. I was having to take insane risks just to keep him in sight, so eventually I saw the writing on the wall and backed it down to a more sustainable, consistent pace. I had a comfortable lead on 3rd place, so I gradually accepted my position in the race and focused on having fun riding my bike. We ended up with six laps, or 54 miles of racing in just over four hours, and I felt like I put in a good ride.

Mid-race, rockin' through "Paul's Motivator", trying to make up time. Photo: DJ Chi Wai

In the end, since Jonathan is quite a bit younger than I, we both ended up winning our respective classes in the Marathon -- he the under-40 class, and me the 40+ category. But I still know there was no denying Jonathan Wait on this day. He was the true champion and deserves all the glory and credit that goes with it.

But that said, standing on the top step of the podium is never a bad thing!
Top of the podium = top of the world. Thanks to all who made it possible!

I'd like to give a huge thank you to all who help make my cycling possible. Sam at Singular Cycles, Jon at Colorado Specialty Velo, LLC, Rob at Oakley, my incredible wife, Laura, and finally, the one and only Guitar Ted. Thank you all for your support of my cycling in 2014!

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