Team Mikes Bikes racers were itching for some action after what feels like a month of rain, I don't know about you but I'm getting tired of washing my bike (thank heavens for the Bike Smart Muck Off kit!)

Nole and I headed out saturday morning to the Land Park criterium in Sac. a really cool, technical course in a lovely park setting in south Sac. The weather was optimistic leaving my place in Martinez, but turned awful by the time we reached Davis.

1230199086_r9trK-O We spoke to Becker on the way up and he informed us that the conditions were downright horrible, this excited me. We arrived at Mikes Bikes Sacramento and got ready. I was looking forward to testing out the team newly arrived racing wheels, Reynolds 46mm tubulars with specialized Mondo tubular tires. They looked fast anyways! I got changed, warmed up, and started out into a heavy downpour for the short ride over to the course for the 30+ 1/23 race where I'd have my first chance to race with Keven :)

The course was pretty crazy in the wet, especially the first half before the rain subsided. Keven bridged to an early break, (nice work!) which looked promising, unfortunately it was brought back and there was some reshuffling before a Jesse Moore inspired effort went clear just after the midpoint in the race. I sensed the timing of that but missed the move, and my effort to bridge came up a wee bit short. It was a lot of fun though, especially as the rain let up. Keven's strength was inspiring, looking forward to racing with him again soon!

1230170678_w7MDd-O In the hour between the 30+ and the P/1/2 the sun came out and the wind picked up and the course was completely dry for the start! go figure. Nole initiated the first move of the race, and moments later Rainier had made it into the significant move of the race. That break shouldn't have ever come back with 8 guys and all the major team represented, and no real chase coming from anyone not named Jesse Moore or Greg White. Nole and I were sitting in the chase group trying to block a bit at times and in general just watch for moves. There wasn't much coordination to the chase, but i suppose we were moving cause the group whittled down to about 18 guys. The break hovered around 15-20 seconds and Rainier looked really good whenever I'd catch a glimpse of them. With about 10 laps to go I figured they weren't going to stay away, because their advantage wasnt increasing at all and I think they started to attack each other. I told Nole to prepare to win this thing in a sprint and tried to keep him sheltered in the cross wind portion as best I could. The break did come back with less than 2 laps to go and the sprint was pretty chaotic from what Nole's pedal struck calf would indicate! He and Rainer got 10th and 12th respectively and yours truly managed to finish his second race of the day. Looking forward to upcoming NorCal Monuments: Santa Cruz, Menlo Park, and the Mike's Bikes Cat's Hill Classic. See you all there!

-Ben