There's nowhere I'd rather be on Memorial Day weekend than Washington, D.C.
Even if you're a not patriotic person, you can't help but feel the excitement in the air. Mel and I rode from our host Vanessa's house in Arlington to the RFK criterium this morning. We had to leave early because they were closing the Memorial Bridge at noon for this event called "Rolling Thunder" - a moving fundraiser for veteran’s groups, veterans and their families that attracts thousands of motorcycle riders along the National Mall. It was a pretty jaw-dropping sight, kinda takes your breath away. Luckily we got our bikes across the bridge before these guys started theirs!
After a quick coffee shop stop on "The Hill" we continued to RFK stadium for the crit. Soon after arriving, we met Vanderkitten Cycling Club (VKCC) team member Laura Cook, a Cat 2 racer who drove up to represent the club's contingent from Virginia Beach. It was great to meet Laura, and hear what the VKCC in Virginia Beach is doing! VKCC caters to women while providing the tools needed to help riders grow and excel in every aspect of cycling, and aims to help female cyclists meet and ride with other women on both a local and national level - a social component that seems to be missing in so much of women's cycling these days. (If you're interested in learning more about the VKCC, please contact Emma Becker email@example.com!)
The course was a wide open circuit in the stadium parking lot, but it wasn't the typical parking lot crit. First of all, no glass or oil slicks! Imagine that. They did a great job sweeping the course. The parking lot was huge, and they made a nearly 2-mile grand prix style course out of it, pretty resourceful. Mel and I were able to cover everything that went, so we were feeling pretty good. Mel saw the opportunity to test her legs and capture two $200 primes. Nice, Mel. Talking about the race beforehand, we knew who to watch , where to watch the moves, and where we wanted to be for the finish. Mel got herself in a good spot, and that combined with her good form, led to a very respectable 4th place finish! Check out the video HERE.
We're at Vanessa's a second night and catching a ride to Somerville first thing in the morning. Mel has a little "history" with that race, so we'll see if we can't get her that W, so she can finally have a cold one.
(seriously, that's what it's called)