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Not an entirely original, unique or exclusive entry...

I don't have something that is entirely original for you today. This is a recap of the racing that my other teammates did over the weekend....I promise to get unique again soon. Oh, by the way - TWITTER: benday78. And my new Cycle Coaching website - www.daybydaycyclecoaching.com Peace! Fly V Australia presented by Successful Living Foundation raced on two fronts over the past weekend. Michael "Grabbo" Grabinger raced solo in the "Valley of the Sun" tour down in Tucson, Arizona, a city that has only two seasons - hot, and hotter.

This is what Grabbo had to say: Stage 1 was a 3 mile TT. Half was flat or gradually down hill and the second half was uphill with a couple steep sections. I rode the TT bike. I thought did a decent ride and was a little surprized to see that I was 6th place and 13 sec back from the leader. Stage 2 was and 80 mile RR. We completed 4 laps on a 20 miles course.

The first 5 miles was gradually uphill with a steeper hill just at the summit. There was a 10 and 5 second time bonus on the first lap at the top of the hill for the first two riders. There was also 15, 10 and 5 second time bonus on the finish line. We started the race full gas as the time bonuses were only 5 miles in and so many riders wanted a crack at it. After three or four miles a group of nine split off the front including myself. I did my best to conserve and prepare for the time bonus sprint as I assumed the break would get caught soon afterwards. I was second in the bonus sprint and moved into 4th on GC with the 5 second bonus. After the sprint, the break got organized and started to roll out. The 3rd place GC rider was also in the break with two teammates, Felt-Holowesko-Garmin had two riders and the GC leader had a teammate with us sitting in. Apparently the field wasn't too motivated to chase and our break was moving really well.

After 20 miles of riding we had a 6 min gap, after 40 miles nearly 8 min, and 10 min after 60 miles. On the last lap, going up the climb, the two Felt-Holowesko-Garmin riders attacked dropping three riders, the 3rd place GC rider and his two teammates. This made me the leader on the road. I began to prepare for the sprint and the attacks that would come before the finish. Going into the final 5 miles there were several attacks but the break stayed together for a sprint. I was second wheel into the final corner with 300m to the finish. The lead rider slowed and the sprint started from behind. I jumped on two riders as they came buy and kicked around one for second place and a 10 second bonus. Stage 3 - I was in the leaders jersey without any teammates to help defend so I had to be careful were I made an effort. My lead was only 12 seconds to the 2nd place rider and the top six on GC were all really close.

The course was a 50 mile circuit race, half uphill half downhill with another 10 and 5 second time bonus for the first two riders on lap three and 15, 10, and 5 second for the top three finishers. My plan was to let a break get away to take the time bonuses and even take the stage win as long as none of the GC threats were in it. I only had to cover five riders. The race started extremely fast again. The five riders seemed to be taking turns attacking in hopes that I would crack. On the time bonus lap one rider had a small gap leaving a 5 second bonus up for grabs. I positioned myself third wheel and initiated the sprint. I got the bonus and increased my lead to 17 seconds. It took 30 miles for a break to get off that was not a threat to my lead. After the break got a large enough gap to threaten the GC, the teammates of the 2nd on GC set a tempo to keep it in check. I rolled in with the bunch a minute behind the break as the overall leader. Great ride by Grabbo without any team support down in Tucson. Meanwhile, out in sunny California, something which we have vehemently been trying to disprove lately, Dave Kemp, Jon Cantwell, Bernie Sulzberger and Alessandro Bazzana represented the Fly V Australia team in the Dominguez hills criterium.

With 100 starters in this crit, the racing was bound to be fast and furious. The boys raced aggressively, representing the team in all of the serious breakaways, but due to the nature of the course, the bunch came to the finish all together. The plan was to have Kempy hit out hard with just a quarter of a lap to go, followed by Bernie and then Bazz to launch Jono. Bernie punctured with just a few laps to go throwing a spanner in the works and down 25% of the leadout, the boys hit out too early and weren't able to pull it off. Justin Williams and Bahaati from Rock took the top 2 positions, two of the fastest guys in the US and Jono was able to scramble for 5th.

It seems the boys are riding well but lacking a little polishing and team work, something that is to be expected from this new venture. Meanwhile, I am back in my house in Boulder, Colorado, training hard in preparation for the next team races - San Dimas and Redlands. This is an incredible town and I am so happy and relaxed to be back at home, training over familiar terrain. I need to take some photos for you good folks but on top of the mountain today it was -2c....a little nippy but completely worth it for the view of the snow capped mountains. And the lack of oxygen at 3500 metres..... There you have it. A wrap-up for the weekend. BD

 
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