Wednesday, April 24, 2013

GVCC Spring Classic - Bloomfield April 20, 2013
Nick Leonard

The day started early with team Dorschel / Reed Eye Associates volunteering to handle rider check-in for the premier spring classic in upstate NY.  The CAT 4’s would be going off at 10:30AM and completing 4 laps around the 11 mile circuit.

Temperatures ranged between mid-30’s to lower-40’s, with strong winds coming out of the west at 20MPH and gusts up to 40MPH.  The wind turned out to be quite scary on the North/South sections of the course which had open and exposed road.

At 8:30AM, just as the CAT 5’s were heading out, Mother Nature decided to throw out a little teaser and it began to flurry.  Last year conditions were cold and wet, not pleasant; so when I saw the flurries I knew we were going to be in for tough day.

We rolled out on time and the group of 31 strong rode the two miles up hill to the neutral start and the race was on.  About a mile after crossing the start finish line a group of 6 riders attacked and got off the front of the main field.  As we approached Baptist Hill Rd a short time later, I made a futile attempt to bridge up to them on the on the downhill heading into the turn onto Tilton.  I was soon joined by a UR rider and one other guy.  As we hit the 90-degree turn, I came in too hot and overcooked the corner nearly sending the other guy into the ditch.  Not exactly a good sign at the start of the race, but what the heck, I’ve seen the likes of Thomas Voekler overcook a corner in the TDF, so it happens to all of us.

The group off the front had a 30 second gap on us at this point and we were joined by a larger contingent of riders, which turned out to be a great help as we were heading directly into the wind.  After the rollers on the first lap and heading into the second lap our larger group quickly got whittled down to 5 riders, including Phil Nesbit from Towpath and Eric Giehl from Quality Care Pharmacies among others.  We started to get a good rhythm going in our paceline and attempt to cheat the wind.  On the rollers of the second lap, one of the riders in the break got popped off the back and joined our group.  This gave us hope that we could eventually catch the lead group which had a minute into us at this point.

As we got past the rollers on the third lap and headed north, our group was 100 yards off the leaders.  We would become one heading into the fourth lap.  There were one or two solo attacks on the last lap that didn’t stick on account of the wind, but the most decisive would come just before the long stretch North on Baily prior to finish.  A rider from the UR team launched himself off the front, and continued to put time into our group.  A couple of us, like Eric, Phil and I, put forth some hard efforts to try to close the gap, but without the entire group taking the same tenacity, it would not be so.  As we turned onto Gauss and hit the false flat, I decided to turn up the heat and everyone quickly followed suit.  We turned onto Oakmount for the final climb prior to the slight downhill heading into the finish and I had good position at the front of the group, giving what I had to road beneath me.  As we crested the hill I stayed close to the yellow line so that I wouldn’t give shelter to the wind for my competitors and was now in third position.  A large gust of wind hit me like a wall and shoved my bike three feet to the left.  As I struggled to right the ship, a rider from Cornell overtook me and this would set the placing for what turned out to be a very difficult day.  I hit the line in fourth place glad to have survived the wind.
Team Dorschel / Reed Eye Associated had four riders out in those conditions and thankfully everyone made it home safe and finished all four laps, something not everyone can claim.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Parish North 

Another win! Another great night of racing for the Dorschel/Reed Eye team. Wet, windy weather welcomed the riders to the Parish North course tonight. Dave got away on the first of 6 laps and was the first over the line at the finish. Jerry and Nick were with Phil (Towpath) going up the finishing hill, but Phil was able to pull away on the final ramp. With riders up the road, Geoff was towed to the finish and was able to jump away for 5th. Good early season form had Dorschel/ Reed Eye holding places 1,3,4,5 at the end.

Top 10 finish at the Tour of the Battenkill!

It was a chilly damp morning for the start of the Tour of the Battenkill this past weekend however Dorschel/Reed Eye Associates was there to represent.  Both Jerry and Dave made the trek to Cambridge NY for the queen of the classics that included over 10 miles of muddy pothole filled dirt roads.  It had rained all day the previous day so the dirt sections were pretty sketchy however Jerry and Dave negotiated them safely and only got a little dirty!

The race started conservatively with the 65 mile distance in front of the field but as soon as the climbs started it started to heat up.  Both Jerry and Dave stayed near the front and out of trouble most of the race and were in good position near the end when the decisive action began.  As the second to last climb began on Meeting House Rd the paced ramped up quickly and the group was quickly stringing out as guys were put on their limit.  Dave was 5th wheel over the top of the climb and Jerry was close by, both feeling that this is where the final selection would happen.  Unfortunately it wasn't and the group of 25 or so came back together on the downhill.  That left the last climb of the day up Stage Rd, steep in some sections and a bit of a stair stepping climb.  Dave started to cramp prior to the climb and slipped towards the back of the group however Jerry was in great position as the group hit the start of the climb.  Dave slowly picked his way past riders as they blew up and was 11th as he crested the top.  Jerry was in perfect position in 4th wheel however suffered a punctured rear tire about 2/3 of the way up which took him out of contention.  A quick wheel replacement from the neutral wheel car and Jerry was back in action but not until the group was well ahead.  Dave latched onto a group of 6 guys that were in pursuit of the leading group of 4 with about 5km to go.  Unfortunately the chase group wasn't working well together and the lead group of 4 riders was getting away.  Dave made the decision at that point to conserve energy for the sprint.  At 400 meters to go there was a sharp 90 degree corner into town and the sprint was on.  Dave managed to get around four riders in his group to finish 7th!  Despite the terribly timed flat Jerry still finished 32nd out of a field of 83 riders.

Overall it was a great experience and a great showing for the Dorschel/Reed Eye Associates team!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Great racing by the team tonight! Dave got the prime on lap 2 and Jerry went for a long solo break to get the lap 4 prime. He was eventually joined by Cory and Phil, but wasn't able to stay with them after the solo effort. (It should be noted that Cory had a flat and sat out a lap). Dave and Nick attacked the group the final time up the backside hill and joined Jerry as the second group on the road. The three DRE ( Dorschel/Reed Eye) riders put it in TT mode and closed the gap with Dave finishing about 50 yards behind Cory and Phil. The final results are still being determined, but great racing by the team tonight!