By Ryan Hostetter -- Tour of America's Dairyland *GC* (W1/2) -- 07/01/12
Hey Everyone! Ryan here.... Amanda, Jane and I are all out in beautiful Wisconsin enjoying the greenery, cheese curds, and my new favorite fast food place.... Culvers (has great "custard"). We are staying with the Kingsley family in their HUGE 4 story home with their two adorable teenage daughters (I got caught up on all my Vampire Diaries episodes!) Kate and Amy who both love watching bike racing so much they are coming with us to all the stages as our personal cheering section.
So far our trips have been very smooth and we are getting the feel of the new venue, hot humid weather, and new peloton but it is also great to see so many familiar northern CA faces like Mary Ellen Ash (who is also staying at the Kingsley's and helped find the housing for us), Liza Rachetto, Laura Van Guilder, and the Vanderkitten team. We are learning that the ladies out here fight hard for wheels and are not afraid to bump or push for those big prime prizes. Thankfully however that Amanda Siegle was able to assert herself early on the first day and pick up two cash prizes of $100!! We were all around the front of that race to show the mid west that we are here and we are not going to just sit back and follow the wheels! We got tons of shout outs from the announcers in front of massive crowds which was so awesome!!! Even better though one of the spectators came by after the race and told amanda that nabbing that first prime was like "peeing all over the field" LOL I love the fans here! They get really into the bike races.
The second race was my kind of course with a million corners and no long straight sections to move around so we had to assert ourselves to be up toward the front early and try to stay there. I LOVED all the corners and technical course and I was able to bring back some breaks to boot. Jane threw in a big ol attack 3/4 the way through the race and scared everyone in the field (it was so awesome) and then at the end I wanted to try and keep it safe and fast and at 3 laps to go I attacked hard and lead it out for two entire laps until the Mellow Mushroom ladies took it over but I knew Jane was up there (I was inspiring her with my work) :) Unfortunately however as I got gobbled up in the last lap Amanda and I got caught behind a mini crash so a gap opened up but Jane was up there and finished in the money!! Wohoo!!!!
We are having a blast out here and will have more photos and reports to come :) I also want to say thanks to Fluid and Lezyne.... so far my travel drive has saved us and its a super cool mini yet full size floor pump that packed perfect into my bag for the flight and Fluid for keeping us hydrated in such hot humid weather.... You guys have really saved us!