This winter has been one of the warmest and is one of the dryer winters in Northern California and it has really shown so far this year in the racing! Everyone is looking really strong and it looks to be a very exciting season here in Norcal! Saturday was the Landpark Criterium in downtown Sacramento where it was unseasonably warm and perfect conditions for a bike race. There were a couple emails throughout the team just days before the race saying that Eric and Rainier were interested in racing but weren't sure so I prepared for the worst by racing without teammates but luckily Eric, Rainier, and Daniel showed up ready to race. The game plan was that we would stay attentive near the front and try to get in any dangerous breakaways and if nothing sticks, then we go for a lead out train in the last last lap. Eric wasn't feeling good this day so he made the decision to sit on the back of the pack the entire race and wait to move up until the last few laps to help us with the lead out. The race had started and guys were flying off right right and left, making it a very fast race but if you could find the sweet spot of being near the front, yet not in the wind following the attacks, then you are golden. That's exactly what I did throughout the race with Rainier while we went for a few primes and Daniel and Eric were hanging out near the rear of the field waiting for the end. No one really got away throughout the race and it was without a doubt going to come down to a bunch sprint. I was feeling pretty good and starting looking around the my teammates in the closing laps and sure enough, with 2 laps to go Eric comes out of no where on the side of me and told me" get on my wheel!". It's now 1 lap to go and all four of us are lined up just waiting to hit it with Eric, Rainier, myself, and Daniel on my wheel. With about 800 meters to go, I told Eric to start his lead out before any surge come over the top of us. Coming into the last turn, we were top 3 with a couple of Fremont Bank riders next to me but I couldn't find Daniel at all. I encouraged Eric with his lead out to keep going and that he's doing great, then Rainier took over and picked up the pace so that no one could come over the top of me and then I started my sprint and was able to hold everyone off for the win! Unfortunately Daniel was in the thick of fighting for my wheel behind and guys were taking too dangerous risks for him so he let them go by and sprinted around them to end up finishing 5th overall in the race.The rest of the podium consisted of Charles Hutcheson (Marc-Pro Strava) and Josh Carling (Team Bicycles Plus/Sierra Nevada), finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively.
It was a great result for the team, giving us confidence going into Redlands Bicycle Classic, which is the first NRC (National Racing Calendar) race of the year in Redlands, CA April 4-7th! Thank you to all of our sponsors for everything that you do to make Team Mike's Bikes P/B Incase go faster than ever before! Thanks for reading and be sure to follow Team Mike's Bikes P/B Incase on:
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