Racing tales from the great Pacific Northwest

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pacific Raceways 5/5

Wind and Rain....
Sitting in my office I was staring out the window and couldn't imagine going out and racing even if the conditions slightly improved. I was 4th place for the series going into this race and didn't want to miss out on any possible points I could get. I told myself I would go no matter what. This was the first night this year that they were going to go clockwise with the escape route. This means you get a good hill to climb and the finish is right as the hill starts to level out. I figured I would love this route.
It rained most of the way over but the winds were dying down a bit. When we got there it was like we were in the eye of the storm. It looked like it was raining all around us but there was blue sky over head and the course was dry. It looked like it would rain any second and a lot of guys sat around until just before race time to see what would happen. Since I was racing no matter what I got dressed and hit the track to warm up. As it got closer to 7:00 I noticed that none of the guys that were ahead of me in points were there. This could be a good thing. Just as I was taking my last warm up lap, Ross, from Old Town rolled on to the track. He is in the lead by quite a large margin. I think he got one lap of warm up in before the start.

45 minutes with two primes. Hopefully the rain would hold off.

At the start everyone was looking at Ross and I to see if we were going to take off and go on a start to finish break attempt like we did last week. I had no interest but I think Ross wanted to go. We all rolled out and did one lap at a slow pace and no one took off. At the start of the second lap Ross looked at me and then took off. I didn't go but I picked up the pace to make sure we caught him. We got to the finish and the bell rang, no more cruising. The pace picked up and the whole pack was still together. I kept telling myself not to go for the prime but when we got to the hill I could see that most of the guys were struggling to get up at this fast pace so I went for it. As usual, Ross caught me at the line. It was only by a hair but he got the point, the cash and I got nothing except lungs that were about to explode. As we were recovering we both noticed that no one was with us so we decided to bag the recovery and go for it. We got to the straight away and saw that four guys were trying to bridge and I told him I was going to wait as I was a little battered. He agreed and and we waited. There were two Starbucks guys so we knew they were going to work together. We got a good pace line going and noticed that the prime had blown the race wide open. There was no one behind us at all. We just cruised up the hill and then the official rang the bell again. He is the devil. I still wasn't fully recovered but we kept up the pace and again I told myself that I would not fight for the prime but I looked at my Garmin and noticed we still had a lot of time to recover before the finish. I decided to go for it. I broke away and the only one to chase was Ross. He was gaining on me and then......He dropped his chain. It was nice to see someone else have the same problem I had at Longbranch. I kept going and finally won my first prime of the year. Ross probably would have won if not for the mechanical. I waited for the other four and told them we had to gun it if were were going to drop him. They were too tired from the prime to do anything. Ross is strong and was able to get his chain on fast, fly up the hill and get back on. I was a little surprised but figured if anyone could do it he could. We were now lapping the rest of the field minus a few guys. I knew we were it. We kept working together but when we were told we had two more laps I decided to let the Starbucks guys do the work and every time someone dropped back I slowed up and didn't let them get behind me. I took my turn at front only when we hit the downhill section and when we started climbing I got in back so that I would be in the back of the line on the final lap. I did not do an ounce of work on the final lap and was feeling good. Were were still lapping guys so our pace was still high. We got to the hill...I timed my break, went for it usual got passed by Russ at the line and got 2nd by a wheel length. I think of the six races I've done down there I've won one and he has won four. He got 2nd the week I won. It was a great race and the points I got put me in 2nd place for the series. It was a shame we had six guys working together and one of the guys got nothing for his effort. Points only go from 1st to 5th place.

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