I've always enjoyed racing Bariani, and this year was no exception. It had rained earlier in the day, and I knew several riders had gone down, so I was curious what the course conditions for us would be in the afternoon wave. The weather was improved- the sun out and not too windy. The field stayed together for the most part on the first lap- there were a few attacks with one solo break and she stayed away for a while as no one seemed interested in pursuing. As I didn't have a teammate in the field, I mostly sat in until we approached the QOM segment at the end of the first lap. As we climbed, I realized that only one other rider, Courtney, was contesting the QOM, but I reached the top first and had a bit of a gap. She quickly closed it, and then it was the two of us with a few riders in close enough proximity. I figured we wouldn't be able to stay away for another lap but wasn't sure how far back the rest of the field was.
By the time we passed the Bariani facility, we had coalesced to 7 riders. I encouraged us to form a paceline, and that's what we did for the majority of the second lap. Everyone worked together well, and it was nice to see how much the gap grew. Towards the end of the second lap, we could not see the rest of the field and stopped riding in a paceline. I prepared myself for the finish, and made an effort up the QOM hill, but this time Courtney passed me. I didn't have quite enough gas left in the tank to get on her wheel, and so I crested in second place with several riders on my wheel. Instead of blowing up early as there was still a fair distance to the finish, I made my focus on trying to maintain my position. Courtney did finish first with a nice gap, and I came in 2nd with others in close pursuit.