Bad luck seemed to follow me from yesterday to the start of todays stage when I put my bottles on my bike and the cages both snapped. I can only assume that yesterdays crash is what did them in. In any case, with no time to find replacement cages I threw my bottles on my back and took to the road. Feeling only slightly sore from yesterdays introduction to the road, my legs generally felt good. I was able to keep a decent cadence up the first climb through Duxbury and figured I would be able to keep on the peleton through the bolton flats and on to App gap. Unfortunately, after riding a short dirt section, the pack crossed over a gravel pit where the first attack was launched. While attackers rode away, riders closest to me seemed to come to a crawl trying to cross the "gravel pit." The pause to cross the pit in front of me was so long, that the pack put a good amount of distance in to us, that I was unable to make up.
With one other rider, I began the chase through the Bolton flats. It did not help that the sprint was coming up, meaning another hard acceleration that we would not be there for. We did our best to bridge back up, but even with an additional rider, could not. After the feed zone, I decided it would be best to just ride in at a steady pace. Afterall, I was not in contention for the General Classification, so time lost was not a big deal, especially since giving up was not an option.
As a I approached RT116, I found myself pushing through a headwind that would not let up. By the time I met up with the roads I had crashed on just a day before, the sky opened up just enough to cool things down. I eventually met up with the base of RT17, which leads up to App Gap, but first crosses what is known as Baby Gap.
|Approaching the 100m to go mark with a good pace, just at the wrong|
time and with the wrong group leader. Whoops.