Saturday, September 29, 2012
Franco Belge Take Three
Today's third stage in Franco Belge was relatively calm, especially in comparison to the first two stages. It took a bit for the break to get away, but once that happened, the field was a bit more passive than the first two days. No one seemed possessed to have that next spot in front of them, which was a nice change of pace; a little less mentally straining. That of course all changed as we came into the local circuit and reeled the break in. Then the pace and craziness amped up. I hung back, trying to stay clear of trouble, and just took things as they happened. Eventually I moved up a bit and did what I could to help set Giacomo up for the sprint. I took him and Robert to the front as we came into the last lap. Then I went to the front and took an all out pull for about 2km because I knew otherwise I would get swarmed and my day would be over. I'm not so keen on bumping elbows with these crazed sprinters, so I have a bad tendency to shy away as things get heated on the final run in. I hoped my pull would help bring back the break as well as string the field out to make it safer/easier for Giacomo. Once I sat up, I was happy to see Robert had Giacomo on his wheel about 30 deep. By the end, Giacomo had done a good sprint to take around 6th again. We haven't gotten the stage win, but it we're fight as best we can against these teams who have 8 riders and have a full lead out train. Tomorrow is the last stage with a local circuit containing a pretty good climb that we do 8 times. Hopefully it will thin the field quickly, and I can find some good legs to have a poke toward the end. We'll see!