Livin' the Dream

Livin' the Dream

About Me

I am a sophomore at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA, majoring in journalism. My passion is cycling. I am a category 4 bike racer and my absolute dream would be to turn pro one day. My more realistic goal is to become a journalist for the sport of cycling and eventually move on to become a broadcaster for the sport.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah: Behind the Scenes Stage 2

         Stage 2 from Panguitch to Torrey defines the state of Utah. The views do not get any better than this. For the riders though it is a stage from hell. At 130 miles and over 11,000 feet of climbing it is taxing on the body. From my view at the rear of caravan I witnessed three riders climb into the broom wagon and four others abandon to their respective team cars. That’s a personal record of the amount of abandons I have seen in one day.

The Start

            Panguitch is a small town with a big heart. The town loves the race and this is the second year in a row the Tour of Utah has visited Panguitch. To kick-off the start of rider sign-in each morning the U.S. Army fires a blank from a cannon. Today, the race got the legend Jens Voigt to fire the cannon. He was pretty stoked about it and after firing the cannon he raised his arms in victory formation. After celebrating the cannon fire the Army guys gave Jens the blank bullet. Jens exclaimed he was going to take it home and show it to his kids. Announcer Brad Sohner joked how he was not sure if they would let him bring that on the plane.

            While I was walking around surveying the team buses and riders Rich was having fun back at the truck. A group of people were walking around in Star Wars costumes. Everybody was getting pictures with them, even riders. They asked Rich if they could get a picture in the back of our truck. People think it is pretty cool how we have the brooms sticking up on either side. Rich gave them one condition; he had to be it. The picture turned out to be pretty sweet.

Jens Voigt firing the cannon to kick-off stage 2 pre-race activities
            I also caught up with the guy passing out the mini-profile cards and got my set of them. I taped the profile and a copy of the rider list to the glove compartment. Bam, now I am pro just like Rich

The Race

            Today was a crazy sign day with four KOM’s and two Sprints, and tons of caution signs due to cattle guards on the course. The Routing and Signs crew put out all, but three of its signs excluding the extras we carry. That accounts to roughly over 120 signs put out. That meant I threw over 60 sand bags into the bed of our truck. Being a cyclist I never really lift upper body weights so I’m going get buff this week lifting all of those sand bags.

            The course was a non-stop postcard. There is nothing really else to tell. Make sure to check out my slideshow below.

The Finish

            Rich and I rolled into the 1K arch will quite a haul. Our leader Mark was impressed and stated that was the most signs he ever put out on course. Take it he’s been around the block having worked over 20 total tours including Tour de Georgia, Tour of Missouri, Tour of California, Tour of Utah, US Pro Cycling Challenge, Exergy Tour and Tour of Alberta. Rich and I posed with our haul before we began the sign sort and sand bag unload. The crew briefly took a five-minute break to allow a patch of rain to pass through. I have to say I love the dry heat compared to the humidity of DC. Everything dries much quicker.           

            After the sign sort the crew made the 3hr transfer to the city of Lehi where stage 3 starts. Tomorrow the race finishes with 4 circuits of the Miller Motorsports Park raceway course.


No comments :

Post a Comment