The SilverCity Criterium was a race that heavily featured all 8 of PureBlack Racing’s riders with every single one of them taking a turn on the front. The team stood out as the most aggressive team on the day and they continued to establish themselves as crowd favourites in the American racing scene.
Right from the start Roman Van Uden made the teams intention clear jumping out to a lead on the first lap, a position he maintained for the first 10 laps and featured in on a number of occasions during the race. When Roman wasn’t on the front it was one of his teammates leading the action on the course. With strong winds making the course even trickier than normal it was difficult for any breaks to stay away but it was a perfect fit for the teams strategy of making the race as hard as possible and set Mike Northey up for a sprint to the line.
Break after break went off the front of the race and there wasn’t a single one that the team wasn’t represented in. As the race entered its 2nd half team captains Tim Gudsell and Glen Chadwick were away in a break and drove it hard from the front for 10 laps but a lack of willingness from others in the group meant it too eventually came back to the peloton.
As the race approached the final 4 laps James McCoy on debut for the team in the US (and sporting a dashing moustache) put in a huge pull off the front to set Mike and Roman up for the sprint to the finish. Confusion reigned in the peloton in the last couple of laps as race announcers called the final lap 1 too early. This had no bearing on Roman and Mike as they were keeping count of the laps themselves and knew there were still 2 laps to go.
With no lead out trains in play it came down to a messy sprint finish and Mike and Roman both crossed the line in the top 10 with Mike in 7th and Roman in 10th in another big day for the team. The Tour of the Gila finishes tomorrow with another road race stage called the Gila Monster.