Yesterday was the Augusta Training Series Crit #4 and my training plan said to complete some higher zone exercises and the coach said to go for it if I want - so I did. It was a good time once again. Great weather and a great group of people. As I sat on the line I looked back and counted about 45 heads in my field. I was wondering how a larger field would workout and it wasn't much different than the 35 at the last race.
As the race went on there were a few attacks but nothing that lasted more than a 1/4 of a lap. I stayed at the front trying to stay out of the wind and stay in the safe zone. I figured I'd stay there for most of the race and then towards the end, drift back a bit to save up some juice for the end. That's exactly what I did. Most of the time I was trying to get Hinder's cover of Wham's "Careless Whisper" out of my head since it was driving me crazy. The thing that finally did it was a guys tire blowing out and knifing through the peleton with no casualties somehow.
Finally we got to the last lap as I was sitting in about 25th resting so I decided to make my move. The group kept the left side open so I steadily slid up trying to get towards the front by the last hard turn. Into the final 90 degree left we went as I was in about 8th. The sprint was on and I lost a few positions and gained a few as we hammered towards the line. I just plain ran out of gas though as we hit the line and one guy nipped me at the line. Counting those ahead I believe I was 13th out of 45 which was great. ***EDIT - Even better. Results are posted and I was 11th out of 45!!!*** Those that I knew were in front of me should have been in front. I was really satisfied to get out there and especially try out my new wheels. This was the 2nd ride on the new Madone 5.1. I don't know if the previous race made this one that much more comfortable or if it was in fact the bike. Either way it was a great race and a pretty good finish. I was really happy with the day's events.