What a beautiful, BUT HOT, day to race your bike. The Masters 35 wasn't until 2:30 and I believe the temps got up to 90. Plus the newly (and greatly improved) paved course was awesome but even hotter from the newly paved asphalt just bubbling up on your tires and body.
A little more tame field, but still South East Masters racing, so started out pretty mild and one dig was brought back before Jay Charles launched at the Start/Finish. I was on him and he is dangerous. He got us through turn 1 and 2 and I gased it on the headwind backstretch creating an unexpected gap so I slowed to see who was latching on. Not sure of the details on how it formed from there, but Jay and I were obviously there, Darren from POA, Marcus from Carolina Flyers, Todd Clapp from Clif Bar and my teammate, Ryan Jenkins and not long after another of our teammates came across, Grant McAlister. Seven man break rolling and rolling hard. Picked up 15 seconds on the field in no time. Carolina Masters started throwing attacks to losen things up but couldn't get any separation. Strong break and a long way to go, so settle in.
Once we realized we had the field in sight to be lapped, our guys knew we had no desire whatsoever to lap, but the other guys had plenty to gain, so here come the attacks. They were shortlived, but still happening if we drove the pace to slow. POA and Preferred Parking had everthing to gain to get to the field and unfortunately we did with 2 to go and all hell broke loose as the POA guy had two former teammates waiting on him and dropped the hammer. Very good tactical move, but that means they intentionally slowed and dropped from the pack and there is some that may argue that although legal by all accounts, it is just not the best etiquette, but a win is a win and that is what Darin got from it.
Jay saw the move and jumped but could never get that close and Ryan marked Jay a bit late, but with all the commotion and choas from being back with the lapped field, it created havoc and some sketch weaving in and out of traffic. Jay 2nd, Ryan 3rd and my local favorite, Marcus, 4th. I had his wheel and some lapped rider sprinting for 15th-20th got in my way at the finish and one brake check is all I needed to get 5th.
Good race. Good workout. Hot day. Did I say hot day? Wow, how the body just isn't use those temps yet. And 3-1/2 hours in the yard upon arrival at home. What a day.