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Mazurcoaching.com Surviving in Europe!

June 6, 2008 – The boys arrived ready and eager to take on the Pro riders in Europe as they prepared for their first race, a points criterium, in the beautiful city center of Gdansk. The criterium course was a 1.3km loop with 600m of rough cobbles per lap. They would be battling against top Polish Continental Pro teams such as CCC Polsat, Mroz and DHL to name a few.

From the gun an early breakaway group was established with the top teams represented. Alex Bhogal attempted to bridge early on several occasions only to be chased down by the pursueing peloton. Midway through the race Derrek Ivey would demonstrate his exceptional time trial skills once again as he rolled off the front with three riders hitching a free ride as he attempted to bridge to the breakaway group while the field settled as the front riders soaked up all of the points. Ivey would make it within 100m of the lead riders as the race came to close. He finished strong in 10th place while Bhogal was 4th in the field sprint taking 15th place overall.

The boys took a few laps to adjust to the European style of racing and found that although the pace was high in the straightaway sections, often exceeding speeds of 60km/hr, the cornering was quite slow. This lead to massive sprint efforts every lap as the riders got up to speed. One very important lesson was learned that day — always wear chamois cream when riding cobbled roads.

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