By Matteo Dal-Cin
The Tucson Bicycle Classic marked the last weekend I spent in Tucson this year and was the second race of the season for me.
It started out with a short time trial on a rolling loop that is used on one of the weekly group rides. I only had my road bike with me for camp so given the lack of aero equipment I was happy with my 38th place and only being around 40 seconds off the pace.
The following two days were a Road Race and Circuit Race both on lightly rolling courses. In the race Saturday morning there were a few attacks over the course of the race but nothing with the right chemistry to make it stick. There was always a team with enough guys left in the pack that would end up chasing it back. Coming into the final kilometers I tried to position myself close to the front for what I though would be a bunch sprint. As we neared the line there was a slowing in the group and a rider made a late attack, he was chased down shortly after and as we made contact I attacked and got a little gap. There was some hesitation in the pack and I managed to hang on for the win.
Sunday’s circuit race played out similarly in the sense that no breaks were able to establish so it was once again a sprint finish. Again I tried to stay up front in an attempt to get some time bonuses and move up on GC a little. In the end I didn’t have a great sprint to the line and finished up in 15th on the day which left me 16th overall.
It was really great to get some early season racing in especially since there won’t be any available at home before I head out to my next big race. I now have two weeks of training split between South Carolina and Ottawa before flying to the Tour of Morocco for what will be the biggest race I’ve ever taken part in as it spans 10 days of racing.