Those Who Refuse To Shift and the women-folk will be center stage Thursday night.
The final WorldTour event heading into July’s Tour Competition, it’s an evening that will see the tough, beer-swilling singlespeeders have their day, with double points to those on one gear. It’s going to be an interesting night, especially if Steve Andriese makes it out. He’d be up against the revelation of Cross Night, Eric Pollard, who plans on piloting his Coconino rig Thursday in an effort to set the new SS record. He’ll have the help and firepower of Jason Whittaker, the big hope for Einstein Racing in the WorldTour. It’ll be his third themed-participation of three, and if he can hold his great form of June, he should be in the top ten overall and be looking at picking up over 25 points on the day.
The current WorldTour leader, Ty Schmidt, is five points clear of Cody Sovis, but neither will be able to pull double points, meaning the gap back will surely shrink. It’s the same story for Jason Lowetz, who made in-roads on Fat Bike Night and Cross Night to be third at heading into tonight’s ride. With no Ryan Kennedy on hand, it looks like a night for Schmidt and Lowetz to join forces with Keegan Myers to make a run at another sub-39 minute night.
For the Ladies’, it’s the best chance to move up the standings, with full 20 points for the first women across the line, -1 through the top 20. Susan Vigland and Lauri Brockmiller are expected to start, and if they can recruit current record holder Laura Webb, it could be an extremely fast evening. Anything under 45 minutes is always a great result, but these three, buoyed perhaps by Rachel Decker, could stand a stance at ducking in the high 43s and knock-off the old mark.
July 3 will be a cease-fire of sorts, worth no WorldTour points. It’s the night before the Pancake Ride, and a welcome break ahead of the biggest Grand Tour of the year, the Tour. In case you missed the official announcement, Einstein Cycles has released details of the 2014 Tour, including the dramatic inclusion of the finale, and Queen Stage, which features TWO laps of the course to decide the general classification on the final day!