OVC closed out racing season with a bang this weekend at Dawg Days Circuit Race in Bowie, MD.  Presented by Artemis Racing, the 1.1 mile office-park course usually provides for fast, steady racing.  This year, high temps and gusty winds challenged everyone, but our 6 man squad was up for it.

In the morning, Dean P. and Ted lined up for the 45/55+ Masters race.  The pace was high -- over 27mph for the 20 miles of racing.  Dean sprinted his way to 6th in the 45’s and Ted grabbed 10th in the 55’s.  After racing, Dean did an 18 mile recovery run in Patapsco State Park.    

Ted got back on his bike in the afternoon and was joined by Alex and Roscoe in the Masters 3/4.  This contest was a bit slower and was marred by a crash, a brief neutralization, and a poorly parked ambulance (the inside apex of a turn is not optimal).  After a failed mid-race breakaway, Roscoe managed 9th with Alex and Ted finishing in the middle of the 50 rider field.

Finally, the day’s last race was the combined 3/4 with Alex, Caleb, Mark, and Roscoe representing OVC.  With about 90 riders registered, it was the largest field of the day.  After an uneventful first half, Mark was feeling good and moved up to the front.  Before long, he was off the front.  Team BBC’s Ezra Kahn was feeling good too and moved up to work with Mark.  The pair managed a 5-10 second gap and were looking committed.  As another pair of riders linked up to Mark and Ezra, Roscoe, Caleb, and Alex did their best to disrupt the pack for the final 6 laps.  Despite being on one of MABRA’s toughest courses to mount a successful breakaway, Mark and his 3 allies built up a 25 second lead.  The usual hard charge with 2 laps to go shrunk the gap down to 13-14 seconds, but it was too late.  The break survived.  Mark got second overall and 1st in the Cat 4’s -- all with his family and girlfriend Ashley cheering him on.  Way to deliver, Mark!  Caleb made an impressive move in the field sprint, and grabbed 6th in the 4’s (following up a 5th place finish in Greenbelt on Wednesday). Alex finished mid-pack at 25th and Roscoe rolled in off the back.  Special thanks also to Ted for coaching Mark to the line.  

Great racing, OVC -- top ten finishes in every race we entered!  

With his third Cat 4 win of the year (including Greenbelt this past Wednesday), Mark should be eligible to upgrade to Category 3 -- a stellar accomplishment for his first season of racing!  Thanks for a great season of road racing, OVC!