• in the (mt) Hood

    by  • June 5, 2011 • norcal scene, race coverage • 0 Comments

    Congrats to the homies

    It’s hard to pick which is the bigger story … Nate English finally breaking through for the big win, or PB&Co putting in a dramatic win against the Canadian threat.

    ENGLISH … beats

    Aside from having a girlfriend much cooler than him, Nate English also has a set of climbing lungs that spew out more CO2 in a stage race than most enviro-poofter prius’s do in a year.  This is a pure VO2 machine we’re talking about … and he’s just been a school of hard knock’s graduation away from breaking through into the national scene.

    Without doubt, this year’s Mt Hood Classic will be the bell ringing of English’s entrance in the professional class.  Some Ameri-Pro squad is going to pick up this hardman … because he displayed not only superior climbing power, but a knock down, drag out ability to burn the chamois against the clock.  English won the TT and the final stage to crush the other kids and GC himself to yellow jersey fever.

    But it’s been a long road.

    For the past 2 years, we’ve all been shaking our heads at the headbanging tactics of this thoroughbred.  It’s truly been the school of hardknocks for this pedal beater … but that’s the best way to learn it.  And who can say that the graduation hasn’t come and gone this season?  English has been on fire all year long, winning this way and that … showing (slightly) more patience and way more determination.  Now his rise really begins.



    But the STAZ

    yeah, we canNOT forget to mention Stage 1 winner for CalGiant, Chris Stastny.  He suffered over the climbs, navigated the finishing mayhem, and pounced just right to take a very impressive opening road race win.

    Nice job, Staz.

    PB& Co dominate

    Going up against Clara Hughes is … daunting.  The woman can throw herself at a race like she’s got 4 of Lance’s missing nuggets.  She can climb, is a time trialing beast … and has more racing years of experience then most of the women out there have been on a bike.

    But it is PB&Co … and it is KArmstrong we’re talking about.  The REAL Armstrong.

    The two women would go toe-to-toe for the final two KOMs, Hughes trying to crack Armstrong, and Armstrong waiting like a panther to jump in the final moments of the race.  It was epic, it was beautiful … it was badass.

    But PB&Co took wins with not only Armstrong, but with Antoinneau and Starnes.  Antonneau would win the crit out of a 5-rider group that lapped the field, and Starnes would CRUSH everyone in the first road race and take the yellow jersey.

    Starnes is earning it.

    what the hell … Dash For Splash

    And in the small pond … have to give a mighty shout out to some of the locals making waves at the crit this weekend.  Steve Reaney won two races in kickass style … absolutely dripping in pride for his upcoming child to be born, and current Natz Champ jersey for the crits.  The dude’s pure power.

    Dan Holloway was there, too – but, he’s just coming back from injury and wasn’t displaying too much other than his usual sass.  Still, it’s good for the young riders to get a look at a current US Pro crit champ … and beat up on him.

    One of the youngsters doing just that was Marcus Smith.  This kid is one of the 45 burgeoning behemoths on the Specialized squad … and he was showing some brass tacks out there on his home stomping ground on Saturday.  What a future this young man has if he wants to sacrifice for it.  Power, resilience, smarts … big talent.

    But the biggest surprise of Saturday’s splashfest had to be Webcor’s Billy Crane slapping his crit on and throwing some serious beef on to the table.

    “I hate Rand Miller” … was all I heard from Crane as we started the crit.  Apparently, since Rand had nutted up and ‘raced’ the Hamilton RR … Crane had to slip into crit mode and do Dash for Cash.  Funny thing was, I’m not sure who was off the front more often of the two … Rand or Crane.

    It was a pretty gawdamn good display of fitness from the both of them.  fukkers.

    But, in the end, Reaney would be the ‘immovable object’ as announcer Briggs Heaney correctly coined him.  It was good to see … this guy earns it.

    Dunlap TT

    The junior TT Championships were this Sunday, and last weekend were the Jr Crit Champs.

    I’ll have some smack to talk about the heathen youth of the TT soon … and, as Ruth Winder said, “the 15-16 crit is still a topic of conversation…”

    more soon, hopefully.




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