Another great weekend of racing for ZMotion happened just North of us in Stuart. Saturday's venue was a 3.2 mile circuit race in a never completed housing development while Sundays race was the annual Downtown Stuart Criterium course (0.9 miles) that we have every year. For some the weather was perfect, but later racers got drenched when the heavens opened and rained cats and dogs.
What is interesting about the sport of Bicycle Racing is that every race is unpredictable. If you are doing a race like running, you can typically identify the five fastest runners and pick the winner from that select group. Not so in a Florida Points Criterium. So it follows that some weeks one of the ZMotion categories will do great and some not so great and it was finally time for the Master's 45+ team to shine.
The Master's 45+ team still hasn't had the elusive "V", but with a 2nd, 4th and 8th on Saturday's race, they came pretty darn close. Here's how it played out.. The 3.2 mile circuit tempted the racer's to try numerous break attempts, but with a strong headwind on the back side, plus great visibility it initially looked like all attempts would fail. Then out of nowhere, our "sleeper" racer Ron Ray sneaked away with 3 other guys and they were GONE. When it came down to the final sprint there was a crash that both prevented the "V" but also took out the 4th place spot. Then our 45+ sprinter Shaun launched it to win the field sprint for 4th with Raife close on his heels for 8th.
On Sunday's race, the 45+ field was HUGE with 57 riders and it was fast from the go. Super strongman Steve Griffith tried numerous break away attempts, and he and Ron Ray even had a late race breakaway that looked like it had potential but was fated to be caught. So it came down to the final lap and the field was all together, sprinter Shaun was feeling good and in position until with just 3 turns to go he had a flat (yes, he was robbed). Mark managed to get into position to pull off a 5th place for the team.
In the 35+ category, the Saturday race was a case of breaks and chases with ZMotion doing a lot of the bringing back of breaks. Grant Potter put pedal to the medal and managed to ride away for the V, but hey, it's Grant Potter. The Sunday Race for 35+ yielded some nail-biting excitement as breakaway specialist Julio was in a very good 4 man break. Chris Hoch and Jody were constantly seen at the front taking up blocking duties. Julio was finally caught by the field on the final stretch of the final lap (ugh) but still managed to come in 9th with Jeff in 12th. Vinny launched himself right onto the podium with an excellent 3rd place.
The Juniors continue to distinguish themselves with Ruben winning the Crit on Sunday and 2nd on Saturday. Jay got 2nd both days. These guys are our future and the future looks bright (but guys fix your team info to show ZMotion!!!!).
We didn't get any Intel on how the P12 faired on Saturday, but on-site race reporter Jeff shared this about Sunday's P12 race...
On Sunday there were several failed breaks with Victor in one that looked good, and then he rolled a tire. Another break of 7 went away gaining over 30 seconds and included Winston & Hector. The Santos boys put there heads down and slowly reeled ‘em in with a few laps to go. Grant lit it up out of the final corner and no one could come around him so he took the “V” impressively. zMotion packed it in tightly soon after with Hector in 3rd, Juan in 4th, and Calixto in 6th.