The GMR time trial, with its many switchbacks and steady 5-7% gradient presented an ideal venue for the climbers. I am not one of them, but I had hopes of doing reasonably well after working hard this winter to shed 13 lbs. It didn't work out that way. Kevin Susco, from Webcor in Nor California won the stage in 17:00. Wayne Stetina (BFC) was 3 seconds back, and Owen Thomas took third. I had not even heard of the 1st place or third place riders and had to do some homework to learn their skill sets. Kevin has a long history of doing well in hilly races, and Owen seemed to have most of his cycling success in cyclocross. Wayne requires no introduction and was the obvious GC favorite after the TT with two teammates, Malcolm Hill and Eddie Morris in the field. Mike Mueller and Kim Bleth rounded out the top 5. Other GC candidates included Tom Doughty (7th) and Malcolm Hill (11th). I finished 10th, 30 seconds back. My plan was to average 310-315 watts, which I did. The problem I discovered after talking to Wayne after the race, was that his plan was to average 360w, which he did, and at 157lbs, he is only 7lbs heavier than me.
Rain was predicted for Saturday, and the meteorologists certainly got it right. As we waited for the start, the rain was already falling and the temp was 48 degrees. A number of riders chose not to start, including Mike Birditt, who was kind enough to come to the start anyway (under the protection of an umbrella) to see us off. There were several time bonus sprints available and I originally had my mind made up to go after them and chip away at the GC standings. On the lap leading up to the first sprint, the pace was high up the climb. Once over the top and onto the finishing headwind stretch, the pace slowed dramatically and I launched an attack to grab the bonus time. I went too early and a group of four caught and passed me. A gap had formed and Wayne quickly assessed the situation and realized his chance to take time from the leader. The break included Wayne and Malcolm from BFC, Mueller and Kal from UC cyclery, and me. The gap held steady at less than 60 seconds for the next hour and a half of wet, cold miserable riding. By the last lap everyone was starting to hurt and Wayne was driving the break. As the pace slowed, Malcolm made a move. It wasn't a violent attack, he just slowly slipped away, and it was UC Cyclery's responsibility to go after it. Mike did his best, but it was too little, too late, and Kal had nothing to offer, as he watched from the caboose. I knew if I contributed too much Wayne would attack me on the final climb, so I resigned myself to knowing Malcolm was going to win the stage, and set my sights on 2nd. Malcolm indeed won in spectacular solo fashion, opening up a 50 second gap in the final 4 miles. The final climb was anticlimactic as everyone was out of gas. Michael did most of the work on the final stretch to the finish, trying to preserve his GC position. Wayne led out the sprint, I came around him for 2nd, Kal 3rd, Wayne 4th and Michael 5th. He lost a few seconds in the final 500 meters that would prove critical later on. The chase group had dwindled to about 7 guys with a few additional coming in more than 10 minutes down. The ugly conditions forced a number of riders to DNF.
The sun peaked through the clouds on Sunday, and the roads were partially dry by the start of our race. Only 15 guys lined up for the final day! It would take some major event to change the final GC Podium positions, with one possible exception. I started the day in fourth place, 10 seconds behind Michael Mueller. If I could collect at least one second time bonus in the intermediate sprint, and win the stage, I would have a chance to move into third if Mike was unable to grab any bonus time. The race stayed together with Malcolm setting a hard steady tempo to discourage attacks. Kal was hunting for bonus points to secure his lead of the green jersey, while I looked to grab a 1 second time bonus, which I managed to do. The stage was set for the final sprint. Eddy Morris came to the front to string it out on the last lap. Then stage 1 winner Kevin took over with two turns to go. I planned on going through the last turn first, feeling like I could possibly win it from the front, and not wanting to get swarmed. Kal decided to pass me just before the turn. Curiously, Mike was not on his wheel, and I immediately came back around after the turn to take the win. Kal 2nd, Wayne third, Mike 4th.
A great weekend of hard racing. Kudos to the promoters for doing a really great job. Here is a video of the criterium finish- http://youtu.be/nEED-NEAonA
Final GC Podium:
1. Malcolm Hill
2. Wayne Stetina @ 20 sec
3. Mark Hoffenberg @ 39 sec
4. Mike Mueller @ 40 sec
5. Kal Szkalak @ 2 min, 13 sec
KOM Leader: Mueller
Points leader: Szkalak
|Malcolm Hill wins the road race at the 2012 SDSR in 55+|
Photo courtesy of dmunsonphoto.com
|Mark Hoffenberg wins the last day's criterium over Kal Szkalak at the 2012 SDSR in 55+|
Photo courtesy of dmunsonphoto.com
|San Dimas Stage Race Road Race (Rank 0.0)|
|1||156650||Malcolm Hill||Breakaway from Cancer Masters||0|
|2||45461||Mark Hoffenberg||Sho-air/Rock 'n Road||0|
|3||54522||Kalman Szkalak||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||0|
|4||34063||Wayne Stetina||Breakaway from Cancer Masters||0|
|5||46688||Michael Mueller||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||0|
|6||49080||Eddie Morris||Breakaway from Cancer Masters||0|
|7||186898||Kevin Susco||Webcor/Alto Velo||0|
|8||274212||David Benner||Wolf Pack Cycling||0|
|10||193819||Chuck Thompson||Polli Veloce||0|
|11||69952||Robert Willcox||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||0|
|12||60602||Daniel Swietlik||Team Hollywood||0|
|13||195618||Stephen Horine||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||0|
|14||95649||Ken Burns||Southern California Velo||0|
|16||302695||John LaGrandeur||OTR Racing||0|
March 16-18, 2012
CRITERIUM RESULT: Incycle/Cannondale San Dimas Classic
Average Speed of Winner 23.10 MPH 37.17 Km/H
Pl Bib Name Team Time Bon(Pen) Behind
1 891 Hoffenberg, Mark Sho-Air/Rock N Road 31:26 11 @ 0:00
2 894 Szkalak, Kalman UC Cyclery/JW Flooring " 6 "
3 897 Stetina, Wayne Breakaway from Cancer Elite Ma " 4 "
4 896 Mueller, Michael UC Cyclery/JW Flooring " "
5 887 ainslie, mark " "
6 885 Susco, Kevin WEBCOR/Alto Velo " "
7 889 Hill, Malcolm Breakaway from Cancer Elite Ma " 3 "
8 873 Moreton, Jeff PAA - Re/Max " "
9 899 Swietlik, Daniel Team Hollywood " 2 "
10 869 Burns, Ken Southern California Velo " "
11 898 Thompson, Chuck Polli Veloce " "
12 892 Willcox, Robert UC Cyclery/JW Flooring " "
13 883 Morris, Eddie Breakaway from Cancer Elite Ma " "
14 874 Horine, Steve UC Cyclery/JW Flooring " "
15 877 LaGrandeur, John OTR Racing 31:37 @ 0:11
DNS 870 Benner, David Wolf Pack Cycling