Killington Stage Race Reports

Alistair Leigh –  M50+ (Cat 1-4)

Even for the M50+ field, racers came from all over including NY, CT, ME, Ontario, Quebec – even OK – so this was definitely more than just a local weekend race!!  The circuit race on Sat was relatively mellow with 3 x 18 mile loop including a 5 mile climb of ca. 2-3%.  There was plenty of attacking, one crash due to exposed bridge expansion joints, and at the end about half of the field remained to sprint at 40+ mph on a downhill finish in a thunderstorm.  I took 6th place just staying near the front out of trouble.

Sunday was a 60 mile loop ending at the Killington Ski resort including a final 5 mile climb with 2 K of ca. 15%.  3 miles from the start was a climb of ca. 600 ft but the attacking had started even before then!  We dropped several riders on the climb and then rolled downhill for 10 miles before a trio (eventual GC 1,2,3) got away and the chasing began until the intermediate 1100 ft climb with 1K of ca 15%.  This entirely splinted the field and I was just unable to hang with the second group of 6-8 so chased hard for a rolling 5 K to no avail.  Ended up in the third group of 8-10 and we worked well together to reach the final climb which was brutal.  Even with a 34/28, it was all I could do to turn the pedals for most of it – and then just when you want it to end, there’s an extra one mile up to the base of a ski lift for the finish – and 20th place.  On my way back down the Pro 1,2s were on the steep climb and they were ripping up it – most impressive.  

Monday’s TT was solid 10.6 miles slightly uphill and I picked up a couple of spots on GC for 18th overall.  Many thanks to Tim Dodd for letting me use his TT bike.  It is a very well organized event and if you like climbing steep hills – I would highly recommend it.  Needless to say, I’m taking a few days rest.

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