Squiggy & Gearlink Cup: A Report from Jackie Kurth

3/10 & 11
Time trial, Criterium and Road Race
Squiggy and Gearlink Cup

The weekend started Friday after school for our 3 hr drive to Tampa.
My 7 mile time trial started early Saturday morning at Flatwoods
Park, a beautiful course through a nature park east of Tampa. I
warmed up on my trainer for what I thought was an adequate time of 45
min. I proceeded over to staging and when my number was called for
start I was ready to launch. I went pretty hard for the first few
miles, maybe too hard because my legs felt sluggish. I passed the 30
second woman ahead of me within the first mile. I keep my focus
and keep cruising as fast as I could and came in with a time slightly
better than I felt it would have been. I ended up in 4th in the
women's 1-3.
We went for lunch and then traveled an hour to Palm Harbor on
the Gulf Coast for a very technical, crazy criterium course. We
arrived a little after noon and my race didn't start till 6:20 pm so
I had plenty of time to watch a variety of different categories try
out the course. (I knew it would be light outside when my race would
begin then turn dark.) Maybe I shouldn't have done so because there
were many intense crashes and carnage shed in every race. The 1K
course consisted of six tight 90 degree turns, with several right
after another and many surface changes. I admit I was a bit worried
before my race but once I got going the adrenaline took over and I
did not think about it. We started with a field of over 25 women and
in the first thirty minutes I did not move out of the top five. I
created and chased numerous breaks and my legs felt fantastic. The
announcer called some prime laps and I sprinted and took one that
ended being bar tape. For the last 20 minutes it was practically
pitch dark, except for a few portable spot lights placed around the
course. When bell lap was announced Valeria Sanders of Team Kenda
Tire attacked hard. We responded, however she was able to remain
clear and cross the line uncontested for the win. Following her for
second after an attack prior to the final turn was Elizabeth Hill of
Ford. I came through the last turn in fourth position. My legs felt
ready to rip for the sprint and I popped out of my saddle and
sprinted around two people for a 4th place finish overall! After
waiting around for results and the contest period to end we headed
out to find some food before making it back to the hotel at 10:30pm,
which is now 11:30pm. I did remember to change my clock before bed.
The next day was an early 6:00 o'clock wake up for a 49 mile
road race at 8:05 am. I did a short warm up to get my legs moving
and then went to staging. We had a small field of 12 but that
sometimes means it will be more difficult. The weather was cool and
foggy to start but soon warmed up. The course was seven mile laps
with some rolling hills and a long uphill finish. The first lap
Christi-An Hansley on Kenda Tire attacked and was on a solo break for
about 10 miles. Finally the field got their act together and we
started our serious chase and soon caught her. There were numerous
other attacks throughout the race but none would succeed. That set
us up for an uphill field sprint. Riding up the final hill two
ladies attacked early and I was in fourth position. The lady in
front of me sprinted and I stayed on her wheel until I sprinted
around her for the finish line. I was only about two feet from
getting second but I didn't quite jump early enough and came in 3rd
I had my best weekend of racing this year! My next weekend is Spin
City in Orlando in two weeks.

Until then,

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