In the photo: Travis Mceuen
Written by Travis.
I hadn’t planned on doing Modesto but was told it would be the last short flat road race of the year so I decided to give it a try. With an expected high of 100 degrees that day I was grateful for the early start and was anticipating 3 hrs of racing. I made sure to pack three bottles, two with electrolytes and one frozen to try and keep me cool in my jersey pocket. The field was pretty small with 23 starters and 7 being from PenVelo, they were clearly the team to watch for. TMBDev had Cam Walker, Michael Kurnik and myself representing. The plan was for Michael to try and go for a break and I would hope that it stayed together and go for the bunch sprint.
We were to do 8 laps of a small 9-mile loop. The first 2 laps were just attack after attack from PenVelo who would send two at a time. I must say the played this race very smart and used their numbers to their advantage. Every attack was chased down and to be honest I was a little worried the race was going to be surgey like that all day and wasn’t sure if I would last. After lap two PenVelo sent two more up the road right after we were passed by the masters 1/2/3 field.
We brought back one of the PenVelo guys but the other had gotten away and before we knew it was out of sight. The remaining 5 laps were extremely dull (averaged 150w for the remainder of the race). Anytime someone would attack PenVelo made sure they were there to disrupt a chase. Eventually, the field got lazy and it turned into a coffee ride. We were lapped by the P/1/2 field and eventually passed by the E4 field. No one seemed to care and it was clear it would come down to a bunch sprint.
On the last lap, I was expecting attacks but again, nothing. It wasn’t until the last mile or so that people picked up the pace. I made sure to hold Michael’s wheel. We had talked before the start and knew it was a long drag from the final corner to the line. I wanted to go from 200m. Michael and I were maybe top 7 coming out of the corner and he put in a huge dig with me right on him. At about 300 to go Doug from A’block made his move which I knew was too early and I hopped from Michael to Doug and as soon as we hit the 200m mark I went around Doug and was able to hold it to the line to win the bunch sprint.
Shout out to Michael for a solid lead out and Cameron for manning the front of the peloton (and also a top ten).