What's Cool In Road Cycling

Racing In The USA

Racing in the US

It’s now been 10 months of racing outside the US and I wasn’t sure what I would be in for when I returned back to Texas. I was in for a few surprises, some disappointments and good times.

Last week I competed in the AVC (American Velodrome Challenge) Finals here in Houston. I was suspecting that the fields would be bigger, but they weren’t, we ended up only having only four guys from out of town. Still there were some good guys and hard racing.

For me this was a big change of pace. I hadn’t been on a track bike in almost 9 months and had to scrape together and dust off the parts of my track bike. I practiced twice on the track before the event to get my gearing right and remember to not stop pedaling. Didn’t want to embarrass myself at my hometown track.

The racing was great in spite of the heat. I was able to manage two second place finishes in the Miss and Out and Points Race. Two third place finishes in the Kilo and Pursuit along with a 6th in the Sprints and a 7th in the Kilo. In the end I found my track legs, but still realized I am now a road rider. I had no spin left in my legs and my ability to jump was well pathetic at best.

Even though I lost my jump and spin my endurance had become great. Thanks to the season in Europe I had no problem lapping the field in the Points Race. The best part of the weekend was the total sum of $250 dollars I took away. Now if there could be a $2000 grand prize list every week with none of the big names showing up I would be set.

After the great success at the track I was excited to race the Texas State Championships in Chappel Hill. It was great to go there and see old friends, but as far as the race went, it was really … well interesting.

I had almost forgot how it was to race in Texas, but I was quickly reminded when we rolled off and were going 15mph! Someone would attack and everyone just looked around at each other. After 6 months of Euro racing I was dumbfounded at how things would progress.

The end result was 8 riders off the front (who attacked in the first 3 miles) with 4 and half minutes lead going into the final 25 miles. I looked around and asked if anyone wanted to chase, but no. Everyone decided it would be much better to try to chase down over a four minute gap by themselves rather than organize a chase and have the possibility of actually catching the leaders and winning. It was a quick reminder of why it’s hard for a lot of US riders to make the transition to Europe.

Well it is back to the 9 to 5 (well really 12-6). I’m back to work after 10 months of time off. I have a great office job with an awesome boss, but it still reminds me every day how lucky I was to spend the last year chasing down a dream. I can’t wait for the winter to be over so I can return to Europe and make a mark on the whole scene.

– Gregg –

Like PEZ? Why not subscribe to our weekly newsletter to receive updates and reminders on what's cool in road cycling?

Comments are closed.