Getting on the Podium at Rouge
Well, another epic Rouge Roubaix in the books. With three different course changes in two days,it still was an awesome race. Hats off to Will Jones and his staff for pulling off, yet another classic Roubaix. I'd like to thank and congratulate the ABC racers who showed up for Sunday's race. Bronson Breaux, John Broussard, Adrine Fontenot, Keith Miller, Alex Habbit and myself. Can only report on what I know, so on with the action. In the master's 40+ race the plan was for Alex and I was to stay at the front and just follow the danger riders that we knew (Kuppersmith and Hunter). The action started early and Scott wasted no time in getting the party going at the beginning of Sligo Rd. Alex was right on him and soon they had a small gap. A bit early in the race but, they let it go and I went to the front to control the possible chase. The two never got more then 10-15secs, then was reeled in. With a slight slowing in the group, Kuppersmith went again and Alex was right on him. This time there were a couple more riders with them. A small gap developed and at that moment, Hunter came around me, to bridge across. Instead of trying to chase him and cause a reaction from the field, I just let him go, and rolled to the front and shut the door through the tight turns on Irondale Rd, allowing him to go across clean. With that horsepower in the break, the panic bells went off and the chase began. I stayed on the front shutting down everything, to allow this break to start gaining time. Knowing Alex's strengths, this was the perfect situation for the team. Alex is a great breakaway rider, and if he just rode smart, we won't see these guys again until the hotel parking lot. But, with some 80+ miles still to go, I knew that anything could happen, so I stayed on the front to disrupt any kind of organised chase. At the first feed, the gap was only a couple of minutes, and with the long fast road from Woodville to Blockhouse, a large group had the advantage over a small break, if they were able to get organised. Well, lets just say I pissed off a few guys on that stretch of road, but it was worth it BC, when we got to the 2nd feed, the break had 8mins! Perfect! At that moment, I knew my job was done and it was all Alex Habbit for the rest of the race. I wasn't too concerned about my placing, with Alex on his way to a great finish. But, with few miles from the finish we caught the poor soul who was dropped from the breakaway, so now we knew there only 4 guys who had made it to the finish and there were still a top 5 placing in this group. Of course there were the typical attacks at the end, but I stayed near the front and setup for the sprint. Some guys started their sprint from the bottom of the hill (bad idea) so I waited to come around when the road flattened out. One guy beat to the jump and just didn't have the legs to come around him, and had to settle for a respectable 6th place. First thing I did when I crossed the finish line, was to look for Alex, but he was already in the shower back at the hotel. I did find Hunter, and he gave me the finish details. I congratulated him on the win, and when he told me Alex was 3rd, I was just so happy beyond words, that I sprinted back to the hotel, to meet and congratulate my long lost teammate. I did what I could to help, but Alex rode an epic race. Congrats to him!