Nature Valley Grand Prix. Minneapolis, MN. June 14.

Great day for a criterium, and the rain held until later in the evening. Standing at the start of the long stretch of road, and had a good view of the riders accelerating off saddle as the field stretches out, 2-3 wide. With a bit of practice I was lucky enough to see the performance of 3 riders, spaced out in the field (that is a 2-3 sec view of each). It’s made a lot easier with the likes of Shelley Olds, and her well defined skill set, even if she’s a block away you can dig into the memory bank and compare with what you already know. Same with Tom Zirbel, well defined and precise skill set, unmistakable. I was able to see the full complement of skill sets, off saddle, hands on the hoods/drops performing their movement patterns. Even one skill set off saddle which was true to the concept, when most people tend to drop the pelvis (rider unknown, does deserve a mention).

I did see the results for the Stillwater criterium (did not attend), Jade Wilcoxon and Olds slugging it out for the win, and Wilcoxon wipes out on the final turn before the climb. She was ahead in GC by 1 sec (not a comfortable lead) but I do think she could have matched Olds on the uphill sprint. But then I’m reading the tea leaves.