Blue Gold Race 2011

The second annual Blue-Gold Race wrapped up this weekend and, despite the absence of some veterans, the pace was fast.

In the road race, both Blue and Gold squads lined up in blustery conditions. Nathaniel Lee, John Pratt, Phil Palmon and Jim Snitzer got away half way through the first lap, and held on for about three miles before the pack caught them in the headwinds. The pace continued to be high as other scattered charges off the front were attempted, but nothing took until about halfway through the race. David Pratt charged hard on a counter-attack, carrying his little brother John with him. The older Pratt couldn’t maintain the attack and fell back into the folds, while John sped up the road. With just under one lap the go and the group, now led by Magro and Boyle, right on John’s wheel,  a crash slowed the field as Chris Kelley, Mike Chifala and August Kunkel went down. With the field slowed by the crash, John Pratt disappeared up the road. At the finish, Snitzer attacked with 1k to go, and seemed to have 2nd in the bag until David Pratt charged hard in the final meters and snagged 2nd behind his brother. The Blue and Gold teams were tied at 39 points a piece after day one.

Slightly different teams rolled up to the line for day 2’s criterium, and aggressive riding was present from the start. Magro was the first off the front, followed by John Pratt, but the two were quickly caught by the hard charging field. The first counter-attack came form Lee, but Magro chased him down quickly as well. Over the next 3 laps of the 1.2 mile course, attacks by Snitzer, Chifala, Neil Griggs and Peter Gray all came and went, until the a hard effort from Magro was allowed to escape. Griggs and Chifala bridged up to the move and the group of three was quickly joined joined by Kaunitz and D Pratt. After 2 laps the break’s lead grew to 40 seconds. This move would end up being the winner, even though Magro dropped out in an attempt to pull John Pratt back into the race. Snitzer attacked the main field and came within 15 seconds of Magro/ Pratt but couldn’t make contact. Magro and Pratt cut to within 20 seconds of the break with 2 laps to go. Up the road, Griggs attacked the break with no immediate response from other riders. With 1 to go, Chifala dragged Kaunitz and D Pratt back to Griggs, then Kaunitz and D pratt moved ahead. D Pratt won the sprint over Kaunitz by half a wheel while Griggs held on for 3rd. Magro’s move ended up sealing victory for the Gold team as he pulled John Pratt and Snitzer up away from Lee, Gray, and Boyle.