Stage two of the 35th annual Joe Martin Stage Race was tough, because we wanted it to be tough.
After lots of attacks, counter attacks, getting away from the peloton and being dragged back by the other teams, (even Anna Barensfeld who was sick as a dog blasted off the front and made the pack hurt several times, what a champ!) Carmen Small, Courteney Lowe, and Jade Wilcoxson got away with one rider from team Rouse. I was in the chase group with Emma Grant who was wearing the white jersey, as the leader of the Best Young Rider Classification.
The break stayed away and we let FCS-Rouse, the Colombian National Team and Tibco do the chasing. Emma rode strong through the last section of the course, winning the bunch sprint with me on her wheel (5th and 6th place). Up ahead, Carmen had won the race, Jade got 3rd, and Courteney came in 4th. Annie and Anna who sacrificed everything for the team raced in afterwards. Textbook teamwork.
Optum Pro Cycling now has all three leader's jerseys. Carmen is in the Pink Leader's Jersey and has the Green Sprinter's Jersey as well, and the White Best Young Rider's Jersey was passed over from Emma to Courteney (who won it in the 2011 edition as well!)
It wasn't an easy day, and that's what made it so fun.