Off to a good start

 

With my first week in Greenville under my belt I became increasingly concerned about my fading leg tan, which I had worked so hard on in sunny Cape Town. Luckily this week we are on our way to Florida to the warmth and sun. High five!

 

Our team camp came to a wrap on Sunday and I think it was successful on all fronts. The team bonded well, we got in some good training and spent some time getting to know our great sponsors and their products which we are equipped with.

 

The highlight of the week form me was undoubtedly the race on Saturday: the Hincapie Spring Series River Falls road race. With it being my first race in the States I wasn’t quite sure what to expect and how the level would compare to that of the racing in South Africa. With our full team on the training camp, we had strength in numbers and wanted to make sure we had every move covered.

 

The first lap of the race was quite aggressive with a lot of guys attacking and trying to get away. The team was ready for this and took it in our stride.

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Hincapie Spring Series River Falls Road Race

All Images Credit: Hincapie Spring Series

I saw an opportunity open on the second lap and attacked off the front taking Blair Turner from the Hincapie Devo team with me. We soon had: Lazzarato and Winston join us and my fellow team mate Mike ‘the motor bike’ Margerite. The group combined well together and we managed to push out the gap out to a maximum of 3.20 minutes over the next few laps, with the assistance of the team covering all the moves from behind in the bunch.

 

Mike was a fantastic team mate and really drove the break especially towards the end of the race, which allowed me to sit on and keep the legs fresher for the finale. We had two further riders joining us in the last laps, which meant the Hincapie Devo boys also now had two in the group of seven.

 

The lap we were racing on had a 1km climb coming into the finish with a 200m flat going into a downhill to the finish. The Bike Reg rider, Noonan attacked first and I got onto his wheel quickly and followed some of his accelerations up the start of the climb. Nearing the top Lazzarato started his sprint first with Turner coming around on the left hand side as we started the downhill run in. I managed to sneak in-between the two guys and kicked. It felt as though I wasn’t catching Turner quickly enough but with a big bike throw I managed to just get him on the line.

 

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522654_10200669970213707_1164707035_nPretty Tight Finish!

All Images Credit: Hincapie Spring Series

I was over the moon with the win although it may have not been the biggest race it was good in a sense to repay my team for showing their faith in me. The team rode well together and I wouldn’t have been able to seal the deal without their help on the day, thank you guys.

 

As I mentioned we are off to Florida this week where we will be racing over the next three weekends. This weekend we will be racing the Orange Blossom Special consisting of a road race on Saturday morning flowed by a short TT and then a criterium on Sunday. The following two weekends we will be doing NCC (National Criterium Calendar) races in Tampa and Delray Beach. I am looking forward to seeing how I measure up against the more competitive fields in these high level races.

 

I have thus far been enjoying my time in the States thoroughly and am looking forward to the months ahead.

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Team DinnerDSC00406Stan’s No Tubes p/b Proferrin 2013

Image Credit: Maria QuirogaIMG_20130303_121031A bit of snow left on the top of the beast: Skyuka MountainIMG_20130303_121013

I guess the view was worth it right?IMG_20130302_133805

Getting ready to race.

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