Torrence Criterium, by Efren Flores

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

The KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo Cycling Team raced the 75 minute Torrence Criterium this past weekend. We fielded a team of 6 with Chris Barton, Brian McCulloch, David Santos, Fabrizio Von Nacher, Shawn Wayland and myself.

At the start of the race, there were around 80 riders at the line with some good competition. Conditions were decent with a strong head/cross wind on the finishing straight. The race started out very fast and the pace did not slow down.

About 10 minutes into the race, Chris Barton and Dave Santos took off and were away in a breakaway for about 20 minutes. The field seemed to want to sprint at the finish and before the break was caught, Brian, Shawn and I covered attacks leading up to the catch of Chris and Dave. When the break was caught, I countered and went solo for a few laps.

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

With about 40 minutes to go in the race, Chris and Fabrizio countered my attack and were gone in another move for 20 minutes. From there, I countered again but realized I hadn’t taken anyone with me again, so was solo for another couple laps.

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

In the closing laps we moved to the front to lead out our sprinters Chris Barton, Shawn Wayland, and Fabrizio Von Nacher. On the final lap I jumped to the very front to keep the pace strung out and took it to the final corner where I peeled off for the finishing straight where it was an all out drag race to the line. Danny Kam of Monster Media put himself in a good position and was able to take the sprint for the win. Chris Barton took 2nd, Fabrizio 3rd, Shawn 4th, and Dave Santos took 5th. It was an exciting, animated race ending in a close sprint.

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Thank you to our sponsors: KHS Bicycles, Maxxis Tires, JLVelo, Serfas, Shimano, Velo Saddles, Praxis Works, Xpedo Pedals, Kali Protectives, NDXSports, Bike Religion, Bicycle Blue Book, WD-40 BIKE, Chamois Butt’r, Cycling Illustrated, Rennie & Associates, Kramp Krushers, Ultra Cycle, and Q2.

Follow the team on social media –

Facebook: KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo

Twitter: @iPA_Sports

Instagram: @ipasports

The post Torrence Criterium, by Efren Flores appeared first on KHS MAXXIS JL VELO Cycling Race Team 2015.

Torrence Criterium: McCulloch Wins Women’s Event!

PHoto Credit: Angel Castillo

PHoto Credit: Angel Castillo

The Torrence Criterium is tough! The wind whips around the 6-turn course and makes the final sprint one that torpedoes straight into the block-headwind. Another factor that makes this event so challenging is the smaller field size. With literally nowhere to hide, the racers are on the pedals for the duration of the race, making a breakaway inevitable in our field.

As we lined up, I was excited to see several strong solo competitors from Jet Cycling and Professional teams BMW Happy Tooth and Tibco, as well as a talented assortment of LaGrange, SBW and other local athletes. I knew the race would be aggressive from the start, so I chose to hang back ever so slightly and take notes on who was going to animate the race and try and make things exciting.

Within the first 15 minutes, the field had broken into two pieces, and I had placed myself in the front group of 6 that would ultimately take it to the line for a sprint finish. Having won on this course in 2013 and finishing 3rd in 2014, I had a list of mental notes on what to do. And more importantly, what NOT to do. As the break was nearing the finishing laps, riders began attacking. I knew that if a strong rider or two got a gap going into the long tailwind section on the backside, they could easily gain enough traction to stay away to the finish. I did not want that to happen, so I committed to either being on the wheel of the attack or pulling the move back and waiting for the next attack.

The breakaway was comprised of very strong riders and I knew that some of them were crafty enough to launch an attack in the last lap in an attempt to get away solo into the headwind finish.

PHoto Credit: Danny Munson

PHoto Credit: Danny Munson

Luckily for me, the attack went at the start finish and I was able to jump on Michelle from BMW/Happy Tooth through the quick left hander before she got too far. As the pace picked up, I wanted to be 3rd wheel and 2nd position would be even better. I knew I would need to be patient coming into the last two turns and that holding my spot was imperative to solidifying the win.

With 2 turns to go, we whipped through the wind from the tailwind section directly into the wind in the short section before the final turn. I hunkered down as much as I could, knowing we were about to turn right on the long finishing straight. As we made the turn, the wind came even stronger across my left shoulder and I knew that the path to victory was up the right gutter, slightly buffered from severity of the wind.

PHoto Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

My coach and team director Paul Abrahams was on the final turn and I heard him yelling, so I just went for it! That was one LONG sprint! But he didn’t actually say “GO”. Things do get lost in translation, especially with howling wind. Initiating the move was better than waiting and being on the defensive, so it all worked out. Thankfully, I was able to get a gap on the breakaway with my initial jump and hold it to the finish line with a bike throw.

I am always thankful for a chance to race my bike, to practice tactics and have the opportunity to be mindful about how I race my bicycle. Thank you to the Peninsula Cycling Club for putting on the Torrence Criterium, and especially thank you for offering junior women’s races, a women’s 3/4 event as well as the women’s 1/2/3. And thank you for the solid prize purse as well!

 

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Thank you to our sponsors: KHS Bicycles, Maxxis Tires, JLVelo, Serfas, Shimano, Velo Saddles, Praxis Works, Xpedo Pedals, Kali Protectives, NDXSports, Bike Religion, Bicycle Blue Book, WD-40 BIKE, Chamois Butt’r, Cycling Illustrated, Rennie & Associates, Kramp Krushers, Ultra Cycle, and Q2.

Follow the team on social media –

Facebook: KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo

Twitter: @iPA_Sports

Instagram: @ipasports


The post Torrence Criterium: McCulloch Wins Women’s Event! appeared first on KHS MAXXIS JL VELO Cycling Race Team 2015.

Ulises Castillo: Pan American Championships

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

It was my first Pan American Championships as an elite racer. I have competed before in the event as a junior athlete, but that was nothing like this. Going to the event was very exciting, but also very hard.

The week before, teammate Fabrizio Von Nacher and I had raced the Vuelta Mexico. During that event, I was very active and raced aggressively, getting into breakaways and racing at the front. I was able to do very well in the general classification, and I was in 6th place overall going into the final stage. At the end of the queen stage, however, I had some mechanical problems and could not maintain my 6th place. The national team director saw how I was riding though, and thought I would make a good addition to the National Team. From my performance at the Vuelta Mexico, I was selected to represent my country at the Pan American Championships.

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I was very proud to have the opportunity to wear the jersey of Mexico at such a big and important event. To be selected to race the event is something I have always wanted to do, especially as an elite athlete. I have raced for my country before, but being asked back again was very rewarding.

I was honored to not only race the road race, but also the time trial which was the first event of the Pan American Championships. The course was completely flat and a round-trip circuit, covering 43km in total. Having just come off the Vuelta Mexico, this race was very hard for me. I have never ridden a time trial of such a long distance, so it was a good experience for me to learn pacing and stategy for such a long effort.

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After the time trial on Friday, I had a rest day and then would be racing the Pan American Championship Road Race. I found that the recovery time was not quite enough and I felt the efforts of the Vuelta as well as the time trial, in my legs from the start. The course was a boulevard with lots of up and down. We did ten circuits and the climb was not super steep, but if it was hard for me. I did not feel very well and I had to work very hard to stay with the group.

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I was having a hard time recovering during the race and I felt a little tired. For our team though, in the end, everything went very well. As the race came down to the finals laps, the pace had really taken it’s toll on the group and only half of the group finished and riders were coming to the finish line in small groups. The first riders arrived one by one, and our Mexican National Team got 3rd place with my teammate Juan Pablo Magallanes. So for our team and for Mexico, this was a big success.

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Photo Credit: Danny Munson

Thank you to our sponsors: KHS Bicycles, Maxxis Tires, JLVelo, Serfas, Shimano, Velo Saddles, Praxis Works, Xpedo Pedals, Kali Protectives, NDXSports, Bike Religion, Bicycle Blue Book, WD-40 BIKE, Chamois Butt’r, Cycling Illustrated, Rennie & Associates, Kramp Krushers, Ultra Cycle, and Q2.

Follow the team on social media –

Facebook: KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo

Twitter: @iPA_Sports

Instagram: @ipasports

The post Ulises Castillo: Pan American Championships appeared first on KHS MAXXIS JL VELO Cycling Race Team 2015.

Breakthrough Result for Santos at Dana Point Grand Prix!

Photo Credit: Danny MunsonPhoto Credit: Danny Munson

After 5 years of doing Dana Point Gran Prix, I have acquired a love-hate relationship with the race. It is one of those races where everything can go perfect and you do well, or everything goes wrong and you do horrible. I have experience both at this race.

This year, I set out to be aggressive and race for a break since our team did not have any of our pure sprinters participating. With a stacked field containing all the best criterium racers and teams in the country, our plan was to race for a breakaway.

Photo Credit: Danny MunsonPhoto Credit: Danny Munson

As the gun went off, it was an immediate drag race through the first few turns. Guys were attacking off the line and within seconds the field was strung out single file. After a couple laps, a group of about 10 got off the front. I saw Chris was up there so we were able to Read more

Barrio Logan Grand Prix: Barton wins, McCulloch 2nd

Photo Credit: Danny MunsonPhoto Credit: Danny Munson

The Barrio Logan Grand Prix is one of the teams favorite local events of the year. The course is 0.8 miles long with 8 turns within that distance. The turns traverse through potholes and bumps that always make the race challenging. The KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo Cycling Team had 5 racers at the event. Shawn Wayland, Brian McCulloch, David Santos, Efren Flores and Chris Barton took on the competition and committed to a team plan from the gun.

Photo Credit: Danny MunsonPhoto Credit: Danny Munson

Shawn Wayland enjoyed the diversity of the course and the additional challenges the elements provided. When asked about how the race played out, here is his response:

“Lock it up.” Those were Director Paul Abrahams words before the start.  We wanted a situation where we would walk away with a victory without question.  The race was full of surges with everyone trying to get a split and a break away going. Wind, slight uphill, between turn 6 & 7, and a ton of corners had the whole field on high alert for any riders going up the road, which was why nothing was getting away.  Read more

Interview With Efren Flores

Efren 1Photo Credit: Danny Munson

San Diego, CA resident Efren Flores is a new addition to our KHS-Maxxis-JLVelo team. At 19 years old, he is our youngest rider. He brings many things to the team including an impressive ability to climb and work well with the team as a whole. His first event pm the squad was the Redlands Bicycle Classic and he dove in head first, covering moves, initiating breakaways and spending the majority of the Yucaipa/Oak Glen stage up the road in a breakaway. His commitment to the team goal was impressive, as is his ability to ride his bicycle. We asked him several questions about his experience so far on the program and what the rest of the season may hold for this young talent.

KHS: You joined the team right before the Redlands Bicycle Classic, so it was a bit of ‘baptism by fire.’ How did your first NRC race, and first race with the team, go?  Read more