No, not my 2nd bout of road rash from a crash at the Tour of Utah - I'm referring to staying at home during this big race in my home state. Watching the USPCC Prologue on T.V. Monday while sitting on some pretty decent form (I set my 5' best power at altitude 3 days prior to the race) was difficult to put it mildly. I was sick to stomach for most of the coverage. I mean, a 195 lb TT specialist who lives at altitude is forced to skip a mostly downhill 5 mi TT 2 hrs from his house? Ouch. Why did I even watch it then, you ask? That's something I can't quite explain other than I wanted the bitter disappointment to burn so that it would be something I would remember for the future. I hope the race promoters are happy with the domestic teams whom they chose in place of the Jamis/Sutter Home Cycling Team. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't scrutinizing the performances of those teams this week.
On the bright side of things, I'm taking part in some very cool events in place of this OTHER race. I did the Rapha Gentlemen's Race in Portland last weekend. Such a cool event! 6-person teams tackle a brutally challenging course mostly unsupported and must finish all team members in order to get an official time. This year, the course was 130 miles with over 9000ft of climbing...oh, and probably 75% on gravel roads in rough shape. I was recruited for a team of tall guys (average height of 6'4" or so) which also meant we were heavier than the average Jose. I'm not sure but I'm guessing that this contributed to our 8 flat tires throughout the event. That was about the only bummer from the day. Otherwise, we had a great time riding amazing roads in the hilly countryside just west of Portland. I brought a Garmin Edge 500 along for the day so you can see the course profile, speeds, and temp throughout the day. Other highlights included trying to stay in contact with Ryan "Treefarm" Trebon on gravel descents when he was going maybe 80%, and eating chips, candy bars, soda or whatever else I could shove into my mouth at the numerous food stops that we made along the way. 10 hrs of chamois time and 8 hrs of pedal time for the day! Both personal records, I believe.
Next up is an event that's been on my radar for several years now. I'm heading up to Vermont to race in the Green Mountain Stage Race over Labor Day weekend. I've heard great things about this race and am excited to finally be able to take part in it. It is the home turf of teammate Jamey Driscoll so hopefully we can race together and have some fun...if I can convince him that we're still in road season and it will surely help his CX fitness. It should be a fun time and tough racing!