Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Nationals Road Race Preview

Tomorrow brings the 111k Nationals road race consisting of four laps of the final stage of Cascade - technical with two notable hills per lap, positioning at a premium. We start at 8:30am so it won't be in the 90s until the end of the race. Nationals tends to play out as either full-out-hard or conservative-to-point-of-slowness, and everyone wants to win so teams fall apart, especially with no race caravan and no directors. What's going to happen on this tough but non-climber course with a flat finish? Are the powerhouse teams going to ride for a leader, or suffer infighting? We shall see! I'm guessing Mara Abbot is the strongest on those hills. If she wants to win she needs to get to work fast whittling the group down to a manageable size and getting rid of all sprinter-climbers. If not, riders like Shelly Olds, Kori Seehafer, Alison Powers, Meredith Miller, or Cat Carroll will rule the day at the finish. Never count out Katheryn Mattis and her Webcor crew - they rode hard for Evie last week but this week is totally different. Evie's no longer an unknown and will be marked heavily. Can she ride away again? Will a tip-top climber (Evie? Lasasso?) cling to Mara's wheel over the hill and win in the sprint? Will the teams muster a chase or will individuals hesitate to work? For me the writing is unfortunately pretty much on the wall that I won't make the selection on the hill when the attacks really go down - will see what I can do!

1 comment:

PoorDumbBastard said...

Good luck in the TT. Hope it goes better for you than today.