March 22nd, 2015 and unfortunately there were 2 races for 60+ racers to choose from. The 55+ guys would only have a race at Ontario but the 60s had both Chuck Ponitus and Ontario to go to. Santa Clarita Velo has always had the Punchbowl Road Race on Sat. to tag team the weekend but this year made the 2 races an Ominum with very generous purses for the 2 day event. You could do 1 race or the other but you had to do both days to be eligible for the purse. I had to make a tough decision which race to do. Rino B. of SCV always does a great job with his club events and he is a friend but Ray Moreno is providing 60s with their own race and a purse. At Ontario there is a 55+ race afterward and both are early which tipped the balance for me. I had to get to a LB Dirtbags baseball game at 1 pm and actually earlier because they had a baseball alumni lunch, etc. before hand. Sorry Rino but Ontario worked better for me on this day.
At the Punchbowl Road Race on March 21, 2015 the podium had some pretty skinny fit looking guys in 60+. You can see for yourself in the photo. The Punchbowl is a tough course and takes no prisoners. It is nearly a constant challenge.
|RR podium- Freeman 2, Wilcox 1, & Dufour 3|
At Ontario the 60s had a 30 minute race at the Grand Prix course that we have done SO many times. It is a good course though and almost all of us like racing there.
There were 23 entries in 60+ which is good considering the 2 events. Hi Tech was a little thin in numbers with 3 racers but it isn't always numbers that matter. 30 minutes comes and goes pretty quick when you are out there racing. Rick Lilleberg of SBW was out racing for the 1st time this year. Rick was very strong in his last season and it was nice to see him back out there racing with us.
When we got to the line Ralph Elliott announced that Ricky Shorts was the points leader in the on going race series that they have at Ontario after 2 races. Points are garnered in one interium sprint and the finish. Dale Luedtke has been on fire this season and was looking to challenge Ricky. Dale would have the 60+ fireball Mike Birditt to back him us. The race got under way and the 1st few laps were pretty slow. After that the pace picked up for most of the race. No real threat at breaking away emerged. Primes came and went. Birdy the top dog at prime killing would pick and choose the "stuff" he wanted and leave the crumbs for the rest of the hardy sprinters. The points prime came and Ricky Shorts jumped early like he had in the last race but was challenged by Dale and Dale took it to eat into Ricky's overall lead.
Once we completed the points prime there weren't many laps left. A lot of the time the pace lags near the end of a race because no one wants to burn energy before the sprint but Rick Lilleberg came up to pace as he had several times during the race. It obviously was going to come down to a sprint finish or so everyone thought.
It was a fun race though not all that hard. The pace was 24.8 mph and my avg and max heart rates were the lowest I have had this year in a race. Thanks to all the 60+ guys that came out to The Santa Clarita event and the Ontario event. Good showing!
|60+ results- Ontario #3|
The 55+ race at Ontario started 2 races later at 8:40 am. 40 minute race and the field size more than doubled. There were 49 racers with a number of guys coming from the earlier 60+ race. Like has happened in a lot of the 55+ races there was a break that got away at about the half way point. 6 riders stuck to everyone else though there may have been more guys to begin with because I saw some solo riders getting picked up along the way in the 2nd half. The break got 30 seconds which usually is enough in our races but that number came down a bit and Evan Teske went to the whip and set a torrid pace. Danny Nicolette tried twice in the last 5 laps to bring the group back but didn't have any help. Everyone else figured it was futile though Danny says he got within 150 meters.
|Robert Paganini riding the cobbles in Europe in 1953. Robert is the "short" guy next to the curb.|
Anthony Reguero filmed the 55 race from his bike and here is the vid -http://youtu.be/xlKXWeGcgAA.
|Dale posing for us after the races with Birdy looking on.|