What's Cool In Road Cycling

US Pro Championships: PEZ Goes BackStage

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What a great weekend in Philly! First I get shuttled to my own private suite at The Berson Arms, and then whisked to a few private functions where I got closer to famous riders than they probably wanted… Then it’s race day and more of the same. PEZ takes you back stage at the USPro Champs…

Race day started like the rest of the weekend, in crap-looking weather, but as tradition would have it (it has never, ever rained on race day…) not a drop of the wet stuff… We took a quick walk to the start line and poked around long enough to see the teams get ready for the day.


Freddy came to the line looking not too unhappy, and complete with his bike in pre-painted US Champ colors. It reminded me if Richard Virenque showing up with a polka dot painted look rig a few years ago, only to get needled by the peloton and wind up loosing the Jersey, but it came out OK…


Next stop was with the Saunier Duval tent to get a quick word and photo with Juan Lopez. The word was “No” as in English, but here’s the pic.


Then over to the Posties’ to catch up with Mike Creed who was busy trying to keep the clothes on one of the thousands of his Fan club members that lined the course. Mike then proceeded to work his ass off all day…


A quick stroll over to the women’s start had Petra Rossner counting off the reasons nobody else should even race today…


Once the race got fired up, I took a quick walk around and couldn’t help but notice how nice all of the Team and support vehicles were…


I also couldn’t help but notice that there may be a slight difference in the budget for some other “Functions”…


Then came a quick trip to the Feed Zone where we had our first Daily distraction tryout!


Before you knew it, we had a Spanish US champion. Notice that Freddy actually appears to be smiling as he comes across in fourth…


The winner and team members gave us Spanish “HOW YA LIKE ME NOW!”


While John Eustace was having the “No-No YOU the man” Argument with Winner Ventoso, …


And while the rest of the Journo-crowd was slam dancing for a canned shot of the winners’ podium, we went backstage to sit down with them and chat. That’s our Dave Berson with Petra…


And Petra with Francisco…


And the other Saunier Duval guys waiting for Francisco (and their cut of his big check…)


And the Check lady with the checks, looking at me like I was gonna do a Philly Snatch and grab…

It was a great day all in all and Philly, Jerry C and Threshold again proved that you don’t have to be in Europe to hold an incredibly well run race…


The only negative came when Petra Rossner could not, for the life of her, figure out how to get that damn thing into an ATM slot…


And the unfortunate move by the European men to no longer be satisfied with kissing you but now actually wanting to fondle your chest…

Thanks again To the Ace staff at Threshold Sports and to the officers and City of Philly. I won’t miss this race again.

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