Going into the 2008 season I knew that I had laid the ground work for a stellar season, the hard part is proving it to everyone else! After racing in the Southeast with CRCA Sakonnet, I had convinced many, and began talking to several pro teams. When the dust settled I found my self riding with Kelly and I could not be more happy with my decision. As a young sprinter my dream was to ride for a true sprint team, and in the US, the Kelly train is both feared and respected like no other team.
My last race with Sakonnet could not have been more fitting with the race being held just a few blocks from Sakonnet's headquarters in New York City. The race was just my style, flat four corners with some rough pavement, and a super high quality field. the venue was great with Mike Ball from Rock Racing really putting on a good show. This race needs to be an example to all other criteriums in America. If we want to create a scene around cycling and get Amercans interested then this is the venue we need. The jumbotrons were awesome, the fans could see the race fly by, watch the lap in its entirety, be able to understand how the race developed, and get an extremely entertaining show at the same time! If all downtown crits were run this way we would have a huge American fan base in no time. This is the future of American bike racing!!
The race played out exactly as I had hoped, with a small break getting established, the field settling in and bringing it back with a few laps remaining. I conserved energy and followed a few major moves during the race but was focused on the bunch sprint. With 2 to go I was locked on to the Rock Racing train, but got swarmed going into 1 to go. I did my now standard last lap kamikaze riding and got to the front but got boxed in going into the last corner. I was a little to far back when I opened up my sprint and just ran out of rode before the line. My sprint was super fast, but without perfect positioning it is near impossible to win. 3rd place was a great result and I was glad I could deliver one more time for CRCA Sakonnet.
Next on my schedule is the Tour of Pennsylvania racing for Kelly Benefits, check it out everynight on TV ont the Versus channel.