2019 Season Opener- Air Force Weekend Race Reports

SM 4/5 Crit- Race Report

The USA Air Force Criterium was the first race of the season for many of the Primal - Audi Denver men. Six guys came out for the Cat 4/5 crit hoping to showcase their winter fitness build-up on a sunny, mildly cold, and slightly windy day at the US Air Force Base down in Colorado Springs. The course sat at 7100ft to make breathing just that much more difficult and was fairly technical 0.8 mile loop that was relatively flat.

 All of the Primal - Audio Denver men were mid-to-back pack at the start causing a sense of urgency to make ground in the first few laps in order to not get left behind. That was a mistake. The plan of attack was to have Neil send a flyer out early, only to have that brought back in order for Trevor to counter and hold. Well, that plan lasted all of 30 seconds as the race blew into pieces the very first lap. It was extremely hard to make ground up as the course was very technical with tight corners. Trevor, Neil, DMC, and Grant found themselves slowly clawing their way up the field only to have Neil and Grant get caught behind a crash and DMC having trouble getting into position. Trevor had luck on his side and found himself in a lead group of about 10-15 riders.

Trevor found himself sitting 5th or 6th wheel for the majority of the race, but was outnumbered with three teams each having 2 guys in the lead pack. The dude that crashed because he thought he could go through the snowbank caused too big of gap to let Nail, Grant, or DMC stand a chance at getting back on. Burning through a lot of his matches, Trevor did what he could. Coming in with two laps to go, Trevor was third wheel but couldn't hold on as the collegiate racers from Iowa were playing games forcing him out of position. The last lap, Trevor's legs turned full potato, but was still able to hang on for top 15 or something insignificant like that.

SM 4/5 RR- Race Report

It was another beautiful day on the Front Range for the final event of the USA AFA Cycling Classic. Primal - Audi Denver brought out eight men for the road race in hopes of having at least one podium. The last-minute altered course ended up being around 12.5 miles with about 800ft of climbing per lap. The real test of the day was to hold one's ground on the 12 minute or so climb at the very end of the course.

The plan was to protect Jabez and Trevor and make sure that they were well-positioned going into the final climb in hopes of at least one of them finding a podium. Thankfully, this plan lasted much longer than yesterday's debacle in the crit. The race had a short neutral rollout and once the whistle blew, the Primal - Audi Denver men quickly took control of 75 riders. DMC kept a great tempo up the first few kickers that let the rest of the team settle in and find positioning. Soon enough, we had Neil, DMC, James, Trevor, Jabez, Swanson, and Zyggy all up towards the front for most of the first lap. A few attacks were thrown, all covered and taken back under control. James even did a dive bomb down the hill from the back to catch an attack, and most likely more than one of us said a quick prayer as he was going at least 40mph with a snowbank on one side and an entire peloton on the other. Nearing the first time up the big climb, Neil was keeping the group under control and then Zyggy became possessed to not only set pace and be the sole leader the first time up - but also the second.

The first time up this climb did cause the group to splinter, creating a lead pack of about 25 riders. The second lap Swanson was an incredible domestique for Jabez and Trevor, making sure that they expended as little energy as possible. Jabez and Trevor chatted about a creating possible break during the second lap, but as other teams tried, everything was getting reeled back in that they both negated it. This meant that it would come down to the final climb.

Again, Swanson made sure on the 3rd lap that Trevor and Jabez sat comfortably at the front of the peloton by taking huge pulls and controlling the riders behind. At the base of climb on the last lap, riders became twitchy and many knew that it would come down to this. A few mini-attacks were given to test some of the riders in the group. Trevor went with just to make sure nothing went away. After a few moments of recovery, Trevor went all in to create a 20-25 second gap that he was able to hold until the end for a solo victory. Jabez was able to finish just inside the top 10 with a strong 9th.

After yesterday's crapshoot of a crit, it was great to come back strong and unleash some serious team tactics. All in all, this win was possible because of unreal teamwork. There's a long season ahead, and Primal - Audi Denver is only getting started!

Jordan Sher