Saturday, August 18, 2007
Mid-A Bellas Together At Last!
The Velo Bella's managed to get together for the last road race of the season, the Carlisle PA championship!
The sun was still sleeping as we headed out of town, but by 7am, it was dawning to be a fantastic, and uncharacteristically chilly August day! It felt like a crisp fall morning as we stepped out into the beautiful Pennsylvania countryside.
Nikki and new Bella Zina were the first to arrive, shortly followed by the Styer gang--Hillary, Morgan and little Podium Boy Ethan.
There were 14 Cat 4 racers, 2 of us Bellas. This would be Hillary's first ever road race, only Nikki's second. Zina and Morgan were our support crew, decked out with grass skirt flair! Regardless of how painful the race was going to be, we knew that the Bellas would show everyone how to have fun!
It was a short neutral roll to the start and then we were off. The course was 5 times around a 5.4 mile loop in the Pennsylvania farmland. There were a few very gentle undulating hills, with 3 or 4 very technical 90 degree turns, and one very steep 300m hill on the back side.
The first loop was definitely a warm-up, we were going very very slow. Half way into lap 2 the local PA team made an attack for the hill. Nikki and 3 other gals sped off to catch her, but couldn't keep the pace up the steep hill. So, there were 3 girls off the front, and a middle pack of about 8, and 3 or 4 girls who had fallen off the back end.
The race stayed pretty well broken up through the end. It was a great race, and we had a great time! Hillary finally did her first race and we're all very proud of her! The Cat 1/2/3 race had no breakaways, and ended up being a sprint finish, despite Melanie's hard efforts to get the other girls to work and put some excitment into the ride. In the end, Barb sprinted away with a second place finish, beating out many of the Cat 1/2 girls! GO BELLAS!