DAF Stage 2 Recap

Stage 2 of the Dope AF Tour was similar to Pedro Pascal’s intricate acting talents; so many enticing, hunky layers to it. Race organizers deployed some tricks to make sure the racing was spicy and added plenty of unknowns to the proceedings. 

Most noticeably, the race used PD4, a new take on drafting dynamics in Zwift that changed how riders felt in the draft. Some riders noticed a huge difference in the ability to hang in and move around the group, while others (raises hand) couldn’t really tell a difference. Such is Zwift racing. 

Early Stages

In the neutral section on Makuri Island’s “Island Hopper” Course, Hell froze over when the entire group stopped to allow Jason Johnson, who never had technical issues ever not ever not once, to get back into the group. 

Despite that friendly start, the good vibes were immediately tossed into the dustbin on the race’s first sprint sections. Chris Ostberg, Jeb Stone, Colin Snyder and Steve Harris focused on sprint points early and often, cleaning up to go 1, 2, 3 on the day. 

If the sprints didn’t get you, the course’s two climbs sure as heck did. The front group exploded early, with Al McWilliams ceding ground to a lead pack littered with Mapei riders. 

Late Stages

Mapei played the numbers game with Dan Yankus, Cody Sovis, and Alex Ralston working over a super-strong Jon Roobol to go 1, 2, and 4. Behind, Stone, Ostberg, Snyder, and the ever-steady Brad Pauly came through in short order of each other to keep the race relatively honest.

Even more behind, Telekom’s trio of Johnson, Kevin Souls, and Chris Lamont played the team game perfectly, using their numbers to put in smart attacks to whittle down the chase group to include them and a foursome of riders representing different teams. 

Enter the race’s other unknown – the Steamroller power-up. Telekom used the Steamroller perfectly towards the end of the first lap to put a host of riders out of the group and put several other riders in serious difficulty. 

As the race approached the finale, Mapei’s Wes Sovis put in a last-gasp dig using a Steamroller on a dirt section just before the last climb to get a gap on the group. Johnson led a dogged chase, saving a Steamroller of his own to catch and then pass Sovis on the last ramps before the finish. 

Brian Harville and Richard Landgraff, without the aid of a Steamroller, impressively also crossed a nearly 15-second gap to Sovis on the last climb to finish just behind Johnson. All of these riders had to push for the last 5km to avoid being caught by an exceptionally hard-charging Al McWilliams, who was coming from behind at an almost frightening clip. 


Dan Yankus led home a flurry of Mapei riders in the front group to take the win. You can see full results from a thoroughly enjoyable morning of fake internet bike racing here. Be sure to check out the GC and full Team Standings on the official Dirty Mitten Racing League website

Next up, the Dope AF takes on Stage 3. A short but brutal 8km ITT will put the cat amongst the pigeons for some mid-week fun and a welcome distraction from the monotony of employment and family life. 

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