Spencer is finally back at the Artesys Headquarters, in St. Louis, Missouri. While we were all happy to cheer him on during his time in Belgium I think we are all very pleased to have him back in the office. The final 2 race summaries are below.
Race Update 8: Rumble in Rumbeke
The race was on from the get go, I had a few guys marked as favorites and decided to follow them.
It was a very technical course, 13 turns, all within the town of Rumbeke (most of the time the races go through the center of a town and then out to the countryside for a loop). I followed the right wheel and got into a break with 6 riders.
During my hour in the break we averaged nearly 45kph. It took all my energy just to stay in the break, when it was my turn on the front, I had to swing off immediately. I got to a point where I couldn’t hold on any longer and dropped out of the break and waited around a minute for the main field to catch me. I spent the rest of my race in the main field, but this was just about when they were starting to attack and break up into smaller groups.
This race was difficult to process, going from being on the high in the break, to the low of being passed by the ambulance and the final rolling enclosure vehicles. There was some good from it though, my time in the break made it so that my teammates were free to sit on any chase groups (making the race more relaxing for them!) and we had one rider finish in 13th.
Race Update 9: Be smart, and patient (Deerlijk)
One last hot day of racing here in West Flanders.
The course today was much simpler than yesterday, only 3 turns. A mostly East-West race, sort of shaped like an isosceles triangle, with wind out of the South. The wind was tamed by the buildings for the most part, but the shorter side had a tailwind (you would think a tailwind would make the race easy, but it does the opposite).
My goal today was to be smart, and patient. With this being the last race, I just wanted to enjoy it. In the first hour of the race, the team rode great. We put a rider in the first three groups on the road, and we weren’t doing any busy work. Of course, there is a lot of racing to be done in the last 1.5 hours of a Belgian Kermis, but our positioning at this point was great.
After 8 laps of racing, we were greeted at the finish line by waving arms. The 15 riders in the lead group were all on the ground. The rest of us were warned with enough time to stop. Not knowing much Dutch, I wasn’t sure what was going on, but eventually we made out the “race cancelled” call over the PA. An unfortunate, premature end to the race due to an oil spill from a vehicle that had traveled most of the course.
Next race, the St. Louis Classic, this coming Saturday and Sunday.
Good to have you back Spencer!