Sequim #2, 12th in the sprint finish

MB Tour de DungAfter a poor showing at Mason, I arrived at a threatening, but dry Sequim for Tour de Dung #2 – a fast, flat course. There were a ton of people at the registration line… and the port-o-potty line. But that’s a different topic. Anyway, race time, they split the 4s and 5s…. yay! Turns out they had over 100 people register for the 4/5 field, so a big 4s only field.

The first lap was relatively calm for Sequim. About lap two, there was a nice break, but nobody from Wines. So, I and 1-2 other Wines racers moved towards the front to chase. I covered a few breaks throughout lap 2, beating myself up a bit more than I would have liked. But we slowly reeled in the break until only one guy from Bicycle Barn (need to figure out what team they are). About lap 3 on the westerly straight-away, we reeled in the last guy, and slowed for a bit of recovery. This lasted until just past the initial slight hill at the beginning of the fourth and final lap. Then things started to pick up as expected. The front started getting crowded, and slow, with people wanting to get themselves into position for the field sprint, especially once we hit the westerly straightaway.

We rounded the final turn, and then everyone started crowding. I was on the right side of the pack towards the front, and another of my guys, Andy, was on my left. I saw a slight opening ahead of him, so I yelled at him to grab the wheel, which he did. We hit the 1km mark, and things raced ahead – full pack sprint. Someone always goes early! We jockeyed for position and I stuck with the right side on the edge, hoping when the 200m mark hit and we had the full road, things would open up. Andy got a great line, and as we hit the 200m he had a fantastic lead out. Things started opening up, and I started sprinting ahead as well. I had a decent line, and found myself between three other guys. I sprinted, and thought I had beat ’em… turns out I beat 1, the other 2 got me. All of us moved across the line within a hundredth of a second… and in the end, 12th. Best finish ever, and I felt I rode well and strong. Andy picked up 4th, with a great line – good for him!
Andy and I had a quick cool-down, then cycled back to find everyone. Even though I had 12th, I felt great – I spent most of the race in the top third, covered attacks and reigned some people in, and helped chase the breaks down. More so than any other race, I felt I was one of the guys in the race, not just along for the ride in the back. That felt good… and now to do that on a hills race! Or at least a few PRs.

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