StateTT 2012-2aThe value of our team was impressed upon me yesterday at the State Time Trial Championships in several ways.

It was not as though I didn't see the value of our team before, as many of you have heard me say that this present version of Canyon Velo is the finest team I've ever had the opportunity to be a part of, we have the greatest group of guys with no drama to speak of and lots of fun and encouragement.

But yesterday brought a lot of that together for me.

The thing you notice every year at the State TT is that there are teams that have it together, and then there are a bunch of individuals scattered all over. Yesterday, we had it together. We had a strong contingent of teammates all parked together in a row, with our TT bikes set out ready to ride, and with our road bikes set in trainers all together in a line.

We had Hans, Paul L, Charlie, Mike S, Pastor Bob, & me all together. We had a couple of "friends of Canyon Velo" with us as well in Keith P (who has raced TTTs with CV) and Chris T (former CV). Alex C came by and said hi as well.

We were all parked just a few cars away from the CASH CALL pros, with the only apparent difference between us and them (besides our age and beauty) was that they a team bus, all the same bikes and a soigneur, while we had a nice mixture of machines and our own media guy.

That is right. We all really appreciated Pat M coming out to record our racing for the team. There are several photos attached from Pat. Thank you Pat!

Come to think of it, a few years ago it was the team that actually got me, a notorious "sit on blankety-blank sprinter", to do a time trial, as Carl got me to go off to nationals and race on his tandem in the TT. Since then I have really enjoyed the tandem TT, having raced with Carl & Tom E several times. This year with Carl laid up and Tom E not training, I asked Pastor Bob to do so. Bob is a big guy and we didn't have a tandem that fit him. The team was there again as Carl graciously allowed us to use the "bus", his yellow TT tandem which fit Bob and me perfectly.

Yesterday's TT start times were such that the Masters riders went off just before the tandems. So we saw our teammates one by one leave for the start house.

StateTT 2012-1aThen it was our turn. Bob and I started out real fast, probably faster than we should have for the first 3 miles. As we approached the hill at mile 5 we were hurting a bit. Once we turned the corner at the top we stabilized and were laying down a decent time into the wind. At the bottom of the course, after turn three, we started really flying and reeling in the other bikes. As we went by the start area where Pat was, Pat said we were just a few seconds behind the leading couple of bikes.

This is where the value of the team really paid off for Pastor Bob and me.

We believed that with 6 miles to go we had silver sewn up and had an outside shot at gold… then with 5 miles to go, BAM. The rear tire blew out.

There were lots of flats that day. Charlie had one out on the course. There were several riders stopped along the course with flats (lots of thorns were blown on the course).

As we stood there, I started to think of the famous saying, that the desert really has a beauty all its own, but Bob quickly jarred me from this, where are the riders behind? This was not answered as none came by. We still had a chance, as others may have had issues with the thorns.

Then I said to Bob, we have five teammates up the road who will be coming by. Almost as soon as I said that, Paul and Mike came down the road coming back from the finish line.

Immediately, without asking, Mike had his back wheel off saying, quick take my wheel. While he was saying that, Paul had our wheel off and Mike's on and we were off.

As we crossed the finish line, we hadn't been passed by anyone in our race, so we thought we had done enough for a bronze.

Even though we had a shot at a higher placing, this was a great result for the team. This was a beautiful thing. A great team effort. Thank you Mike and Paul!

Once the times were posted it was confirmed, we had bronze. It turned out that the other riders in our race behind also had mechanical issues.

After the race we sat together with our CV teammates enjoying the shade and a cool breeze.

Thank you CV for the great lesson in the value of team!

We'll see you out there. God bless, Ed



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