2015 Bobcat Classic ReportApr 17 2015 · 0 comments · Race Updates, Road Racing ·6
After a strong performance at Rocky Mountain Roubaix last week, Team Rockford-Owenhouse was motivated coming into the MSU Cycling Team’s Bobcat Classic. Pete Krebs and Scott Urban contested the B race while Alan Adams, Justin Raynes, Jeff Rasch and I (Henry) were ready to throw down with the A’s.
Scott reported an easy start to the B race, with a moderate tempo up the first climb. At the top of the climb the field was hit by the brutal winds which plagued racers all day. Scott attempted a breakaway with a single companion along the backside, but was unable to make the separation. Gas-Intrinsik rival Guy Mackenzie attempted a solo breakaway on the long descent, but was caught soon after as the peloton turned east and head up the canyon back towards the start and the 1000 foot climb to the finish. Scott took 4th at the finish, only 45 seconds behind the lead group, continuing the awesome form we’ve seen from him all season long.
The A group started up the first climb at a moderate pace, even taking a quick break at the top to answer nature’s calling. The tempo then ramped up along the backside of the course, before a three man breakaway formed on the way down. Alan and I struggled on the descent given the desperate attempt by the crosswinds to blow us into a ditch and my USAC-mandated junior gearing. We worked together to catch back on by the bottom, and began working with Justin and Jeff to reel in the break which was now about two minutes ahead. Since Team Rockford didn’t have a rider in the break we didn’t expect any help from the Jacobson team who refused to do any real work with a rider up the road.
By the time we reached the first climb for the second time the gap was down to about ninety seconds. Justin had been covering moves as well as doing quite a bit of chasing, and thus was all out of matches. He was soon dropped on the climb along with climbing threat Jesse Vernon of Gas-Intrinsik. Alan and I both fell off the pace due in part to our previous all-out effort to catch back on on the descent. We chased back towards the group and almost regained contact before turning right and back into the crosswind assault. The larger main group had the clear advantage of more bodies to block the wind, and Alan and I quickly started losing ground. This left only Jeff Rasch in contention with around 40 k to go. The group timed the chase perfectly, catching and promptly dropping the breakaway of three about one mile before the final climb to the finish. Jeff rode strongly on the climb with ample competition from his three remaining companions. Jeff was eventually overcome in the final kilometers and settled for fourth, still an impressive result given the amount of work he had done earlier reeling in the breakaway.
All in all it was another day to remember for Team Rockford-Owenhouse. Many thanks to the MSU Cycling Team for putting on a great event. With more races on the horizon we’re training hard and looking forward to climbing on the podium again soon.