Sunday, January 25, 2009

U st criterium

The photo here is of a post race celebration moment. The location was 14th and U st. and the year was 1994. I was working as a messenger and so was my teammate Zach wearing the green shirt. I won the 1,2,3 and mr. Zach Browne got third. Dave Osborne won the field sprint for second. I got away from the breakaway of maybe four riders who either got tired or lost faith in the move. It was a Doug Willier course involving one of his classic u-turn layouts.
I went on later in the year to win the road race stage at Altoona as a cat 3. The next and final stage, the criterium, was where I hoped to move up from second overall to first. I was given the most aggressive jersey. ( the white jersey, red helmet in photo ) Fate had another plan and mother nature provided the rain. On the final lap I was in about seventh spot and we got to the bottom of the hill with a couple of turns to go before the sprint.
Just around the corner there was a crash up ahead. Also looming was a monster telephone pole right on the edge of the curb just before the crash. The option of going around the crash was canceled due to centrifugal force. A quick reaction, to the choice of either piling into the riders on the asphalt or aborting into the curb, took place. The response cleared me of the pole but I was on my ass on the sidewalk. I jumped back onto the bike and finished for tenth, which moved me down to third overall.
This year was like deja vue. In one of the first laps of the Pro-cat 1 race a Harley guy slid out on the plywood grate cover. A Colavita rider and myself piled into him. Me and the guy in red got back in after the cracked rear carbon wheel was changed with a Zipp stand in, and they adjusted his out of place lever. Cant say what happened to the HD rider.
In the last last lap the guy in front of me overcooked the turn. He kept the bike upright but stopped pedaling in order to find his balance. Since I had to wait a few pedal strokes a few others behind me passed around and I placed twentieth. Next year at The International, as I believe it is now called, will be a stage race again thus drawing a much larger Pro field. I believe the twentieth spot will be much harder to obtain in 2009 because of this. Call me Nostradamus.


  1. what was the course on U street? There should be more than just 1 downtown DC race, IMO.

  2. it was 13th n u st.(i believe).the start finish ..back then there was a u st festival which closed off the streets along there anyway. So it went up from that intersection to the next left onto v and left onto 15th back down to u along u to 13th and a right. there was a u turn about half a block down then back up to start stop just above u.

  3. It is always interesting seeing these stories of cycling in this area. You my friend have been racing for a long time. haha.

  4. Its all just training for the 70 plus nationals regionals worlds ..whatever race is available...but I view racing as the fountain of youth and of course training...for me ..I like to ride but the challenge of getting to the final lap and pushing the envelope can't be replicated by just riding. I liked Adam Myersons "at the back" in this months velo bc it seemed to encapsulate the drive and needed passion. I was very pleased at Iron Hill last 2008 to place behind a strong rider like himsef. I was simultaneously kicking myself for not going ahead with a group of four that rolled off the front at around 8 to go. I was on the front and I am positive I could have stayed on the throttle to go with the move inst5ead I easde off and asumed the field would pull them in. I5t had the right guys in it and the blocking went into affect..and that was all she wrote. It is these quick moments of analysis during a race that I often think of post race for too long. I am going to try to be a little less calculating in this years big races and not worry about if a move is gonna stick..its always safer away from the mess of a big races field sprint.. thanks for commenting and safe we actully have winter conditions