I left Athens this past Thursday to depart for the U.S. Air Force Cycling Classic (formerly the CSC Invitational) in Arlington, Virginia from Columbus. After driving through the night, we arrived in Arlington, Virginia, just outside of D.C. around 8 A.M. As always, we had an incredible hotel at this race, a much welcomed reward after the long drive out there. Slept all day, woke up to eat, then back to bed until our 4 A.M call time.
Saturday’s race, the Clarendon Cup, is one of my favorite races all year. It is big, exciting, and an awesome course. The top talent always turns out and gives it their all, making for consistently good racing with huge crowds. Racing like this requires precise tactical coordination, where team directors need to be sure their riders are placed in just the right spot to cover attacks off the front or have optimal placing if it comes down to a field sprint. Each rider has a two way radio in their jersey with an earpiece so they can communicate with their directors and teammates. Directors choose their spots around the course, often roaming, so they can get the best view of what is happening in the race and relay it to their team.
Mike Tamayo is the team director for the OUCH presented by Maxiss team, and I got a kick out of watching him manage his squad. It wasn’t his tactics or strategy, but the location from which he did it.
Genius. Something tells me that next year we will see a lot more team directors up there.
More updates from the Air Force Cycling Classic coming later. I’m trying to take all my final exams early here in Athens so I can make it to the Nature Valley Grand Prix this Wednesday.