Race Recap: Independence Valley Road Race

Resident Team O reporter Phil Kearns is back with another race recap. Read on to get Phil’s take on the 2017 Independence Valley Road Race:

“Last weekend’s Independence Valley Road Race can be more or less summed up by this (embellished) verbal exchange between me (PK) and my teammate David Kuhns (DK):

PK: Well, we’re about to start the second lap (of four) and the break of two is long gone. We’ve already been hailed on, sleeted on, and buffeted by crosswinds. No attacks are sticking and no big teams are working together to chase. Should I go to the front and drill it on the climb?

DK: No, save energy and wait for the selective moves to go in the last lap.

PK: OK.

5 minutes later, we reach the base of the climb. I’m not positioned terribly close to the front, as usual. So what do I do?

Drill it.

I get to the front.

Keep drilling it.

I see someone taking video on the side of the road.

Drill it extra hard.

I get to the top of the climb.

Keep dri–… explode.

The group comes back together on the descent, and I spend the next 2 hours of crosswinds and hills regretting what I just did. Fortunately, I had DK and Keegan around to keep my spirits up and offer some protection. I made the selection of 6 heading into the main climb on the last lap, suffered like a dog while still trying to drill it up the hill, and then sulked as the cohesion of the group fell apart on the flats and the remainder of the field caught us once more.

The final, short climb once again saw me out of position (duh) so I burned all of my remaining matches to make it up to the tail end of the split from an unfortunate ways back. Turns out there was no need to, as the group would coalesce on the long descent and rolling run to the line anyways. Thankfully DK was there to provide a steady wheel and some predictability in the closing meters, but we were both too spent to factor into the sprint.

Lesson learned:

If you want to drill it up the hill, be in position to do so on the first lap when it matters, and make it into the break. Head over to our Instagram – @teamoregonracing – to check out a video of the drilling in action.”