From SLC, to Rochester, to Binghamton, Altoona, a stop in State College and now back in the Roch.
It has been a fabulous time here on the east coast. I arrived in the 585 on Thursday morning. My visit overlapped with the Glennbro's which was great. Excellent dinners and good Pezz Famiglia hang time.
Teammate Kat came into town Thursday night to join in the racing whirlwind over the weekend. With my Aunt Meme (or soigneur Meme as we now call her) taking care of EVERYTHING for us, we headed to Binghamton for the Chris Thater Memorial on Saturday afternoon. It was a few hours from my parents and a totally easy drive. The weather was beautiful and not too hot like in previous years. I got a call-up for being 2nd in the USA Crits series. The race was super active and HARD. I didn't notice any of my previous week's crash owies at ALL during the race. However, my knee and hip are still pretty pissed off.
Tibco's Sam Schneider and Colavita's Cath Cheatley got of the front later in the race. Sam ended up winning and Jo Kiesanowski won the field sprint. Things got a little jumbly on the last lap (need to work on that) and I was 11th in the field sprint for 13th overall. I maintained 2nd in the USA Crits overall.
After the race, we grabbed some dinner at a basement Italian joint close to our hotel. Kat's parents made the trek from Boston and it was really fun to get to spend some time with them.
The next morning we packed swanny Meme's brand new Honda Fit (just like the Jowegawa's!!! except with a rear hitch rack!) and drove 4 hours to Altoona, PA. Altoona used to have a huge stage race. It was my first ever NRC race waaaaaaay back in the day. The crit was technical and looooong (41 miles!). And it was super hot and humid too. Fun. times. Our field wasn't as big as the day before but most riders were there along with many that hadn't raced the day before. Colavita was seriously active the whole race. Cath Cheatley got off the front solo and lapped the field. While she was off, I got into a sort of chase group of 11 containing most of the sprinters. I finished 8th in the sprint for 9th in the race with Erica Allar (who won the USA Crits overall) winning our bunch sprint. With about 6 laps to go, I was completely out of water. In a crit, there is no feeding...So I just had to deal, which was not ideal.
Kat went down in a crash but still finished. She is pretty much a mirror-image of my road rash from last week. Solidarity! So all the 1st aid stuff I brought definitely came in handy (though I was out of tegaderm--the best stuff EVER!! Thanks medical friends!) After the podium (which was a Monster podium for the top 10) we put skid marks down out of Altoona to begin the 5 hour drive back to Rochester. Talk about a long day at the office. We stopped to see Meme's friend in State College who let us shower at her place (Thanks Becky!!!). She is the executive pastry chef and Indulge, a fancy cupcake joint in town--so we made sure to stop there too! That Realli Vanilli cupcake was a definite highlight of the weekend.
The drive wasn't actually too bad, we were pretty wired from racing and cupcakes. Plus Kat is just the best teammate ever and stayed awake and chatty the whole time which made it fun. It was interesting to note some of the features of rural gas stations in New York and PA: live bait vending machines and 30 packs of Busch.
Now I'm back at my parents in Rochester having a great time. I've gotten to spend some funtimes with my nieces Izzy, Sophia and Frankie (or as Izzy says, "this is my sister Frankie, but we call her Francesca"). They are wild childs and super hilarious and cute.
I've got a few more days in Rochester before heading to Saint Louis, MO for the Gateway Cup. This has just been an AWESOME trip! Hope everyone is enjoying these last days of summer and thanks for reading!
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