The Blue Hills Circuit Race was a team event and the team executing the most successful tactics was Threshold Cycling.
Cambridge Bicycles (CB) was also showing their organization and strength and each lap they controlled the pace causing frustrated individuals to unsuccessfully solo break off the front. Threshold followed our game plan of riding up front perfectly, staying in the mix in case any shenanigans went down from other teams.
On the first lap, half way up the hill, 3 CB guys took off in unison. Cory, Vic, Devin and myself were there to cover the break and were not opposed to helping their cause if it meant establishing a break. Towards the top of the hill someone behind me said “we have a gap, keep it up”. Cory pulled hard to the finish line and I pulled through, but the favor was not returned. Vic and I looked at each other as we had a few times during Quabbin as if to say ‘dang, wasted energy’. CB, perhaps smartly, did not follow through with their initiated effort.
From here on out a few solo or small team chances were taken out front only to be easily reeled in as CB continued to control the pace. The second lap, like others were smooth; very little braking or coaching; no bullshit. Cory noted as we rounded the turn to the ascent that we wanted to be in the same spot next lap. And we did just that.
Coming into the final turn at high speeds, Threshold took the outside line while CB took the inside. Both teams kept the pace high thanks to Cory’s efforts on our side.
Devin was after Cory, and I let Mover in to our line to get him out of the wind and behind a friendly wheel. Half way up this 3rd and final ascent Cory smartly recognized his pace was fading and shifted left and allowed Devin to take over.
Devin immediately increased the pace and we overtook the CB team while moving to the center of the lane.
When Devo took over I had his wheel but I didn’t know what to think….too early, too fast too early, Devo is just up from Cat 5 with only a few road races under his belt. But I kept my mouth shut as I was confident in Devin’s overall fitness and my own legs. Devo kept it steady and fast and then I saw the green sign on the left of the road that Mover and I had pointed out as our signal to start going hard. Just passed this sign I moved around Devo to the left and got into sprint position. Standing, I up shift. Looking down and back I see a wheel just off the left of my rear wheel. I slide left to create more distance for the pursuer. I up shift. I look down and notice a wheel just off the right. I slide right. I up shift (now sprinting slightly uphill in my 53×14). I look down and notice a wheel just off the left side. I slide left. I look up and see that I’m home free and keep it straight and smooth. I cross first, throwing my bike forward for good measure, fending off Jesse P (CB) by a few feet. I put my right fist in the air like I’m rounding first base after hitting my first home run in little league. I give Jesse a ‘low 5′ and congratulate he and Steven of MRC who took 3rd.
Thanks Cory and Devin for getting me my first win! Great work by all.