Monday, December 22, 2008

Super-Driveway & Finale in Macau

Day 7 of ToSCS took us to Zhuhai, a town deep in South China know especially for it's 4.5K car race track called ZIC. For you Austin readers, this is like a HUGE version of the Driveway. They usually run car races out there but today us two-wheeled "motorists" took over and did 25 fast laps (105K) on the asphalt.
The circuit race was pretty fast from the gun and I tried to keep getting in a good workout by attacking and trying to make the early break but to no avail. After 20minutes I went back into "chill-mode" and went with the flow of the peloton which mostly kept steady at 44Kph. There were a few attacks from some serious GC contenders at one point and we went hard for a couple of laps but everything came back together. Nothing better than going 35mph all strung out on a race car track with 90 guys. Finally, a group of 8 got away and finished 10econds ahead of the bunch (in which I came in, too).

Now they "real" Tour started as we had to pack all of our stuff together and send stuff via truck to our Macau hotel where the final stage would go down on Sunday. We headed by bus to the China/Macau border, went by foot through immigration + customs, and back onto a different bus to our hotel. That was a 3hr "hike" after doing 60+miles circuit race. I was ready for bed. But first we had to wait for our bags and bikes to arrive - which they did around 8pm.

The final stage of ToSCS always takes places on the Southern Island of Macau on a 9K loop and finishes on top of the Coloane Hill. You do ten 5mile laps which are mostly rollers and a few short climbs before they send you up the 3K hill for the mountain-top finish (switchbacks a la Mt. Scott for those Wichita/OK readers). Knowing that it will come down to a "sprint" to the base of the climb, I just rolled with the peloton and let the attacking go by and counted down the laps from 15th wheel behind the Shanghai, HongKong, and China Nat's Team. It felt like getting ready for a bunch sprint as we approached the final left turn up the hill and I was somewhere in the middle of it. I knew that the GC will be decided with how you'd finish today since so many guys had the same time...I had to find my way around a bunch of guys and was glad to have the 39x25 going for this type of finish (see picture right). I ended up 20th on the day and 21st in GC. I'm definitively happy with that considering that I almost got shut out completely on Stage 4 by that motobike.

A part of my team and the manager went to some fenzy awards dinner at the Macau Tower before we went gambling with the few prize money we actually made over the last 8 days. Macau is a mini-version of Las Vegas; they have The Venetian, a MGM, etc. just like over in the US of A. Now I'm off to another 20+hr trip back to freezing Texas (Yikes...I'm still a bit sun-burned from the last few days where we always got to race in 80ish degree sunshine).


Pong and I at The Venetian, Macau

Macau Tower before sunset


  1. Be happy you won't be returning to Wisconsin where it's 5 degrees.

  2. congrats at the race. sounds pretty amazing! ya i'll try to swing by austin sometime for some delicious brew....of coffee