Going into ToAD we raced very well as a team at Reston Grand Prix in Reston Virginia. We were all looking forward to a good week in Wisconsin and starting it off in the money at Reston was what we needed to get the confidence up as we were heading into a whirlwind of criterium racing, featuring 125 rider fields and courses that may not necessarily favor our squad of breakaway savy riders.
Going into the Schlitz Park Criterium, we had a plan to stay active at the right times. The hill was our saving grace as we all go uphill fairly well and we used it as leverage to wear the field down and have one of our moves work. After trading attacks, a couple small moves went. Some stuck for a lap or two, some dwindled off the front. Finally Wittwer put in the winning attack bridging up to one up the road. The one up the road had been slowly frying off the front and by the time Greg got to him he was able to pass him and continue solo. The front of the field was now controlled and we took advantage of the technical course by leading into the turns and controlling the pace through the technical sections. Wittwer rolls through with his arms raised and Marcos and I follow suit for an excellent team performance and Greg in the ToAD cow jersey.
Our first impressions were long lasting as we placed multiple riders in the money every single day. The following races were fast, usually 4 corner crits. We had our sprinting legs out but weren’t afraid to try to make a break happen. The final day in Madison brought an excellent team presence and performance as we aimed to bump me into a podium spot on GC. Greg rode the front 99% of the time controlling the pace as I went in and out of the field trying to get away-saving some legs for a leadout from Greg. In the final lap of the race, I was on Greg’s wheel, lead into the hill perfectly and got a free ride up the hill. We made the final turn and as I went to come around to sprint to what I believed was a stage win, the rider on my inside flatted and came into me. I had to slam on the brakes and restart my sprint. The beauty of it was the rider who flatted happened to be in the green jersey. I was able to bump up in GC for a podium spot in 2nd overall.
We packed up the car, and blasted The Fatback Band “Gotta Get My Hands On Some (Money)” as we journeyed home with some serious winnings, experiences, and memories that we’ll never forget.