Marty Jemison’s 2000 First Union Series Diary

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Lancaster

A break of 7 was up the road … there were no Postal boys … after 1-2 laps they had around a 1:00 lead. On a long incline I noticed Oscar Freire (World Champion) moving up … a perfect time to launch I thought, and he looked like good company … in an effort to make the bridge. Oscar attacked and I went with him … two others in our wheel … I often surprise myself of how strong I can be when I am in a place that I like to be. We made it to the break within one lap (10-15kms?) one rider from 7-up helped … I felt bad, bad for him (7-up) when Oscar looked over to me on the same incline where it started. I nodded and he attacked again to drop our two companions. we each took one monster pull and were then on the back of the break …

So now Postal was represented with still 1/2 of the race remaining … a good situation … maybe, maybe not … 9 riders with Fred R. and Oscar F. I noticed the time gap coming down fast … someone was bringing us back … It was Postal … apparently the team thought this break was a threat … I only wish I had known before my earlier efforts …

The team continued to ride (too?) hard throughout the race … in the end George would only get 7th in the sprint. Julian Dean was the only man left in the last lap … the rest of us left behind due to all the efforts to control and bring back breaks …

Wilmington Delaware 145kms

This is hard circuit … I started in the first 20 or so … single file throughout most of the circuit … I faded back for a couple laps and then started to move back up … not really feeling any better, just knowing from experience that it is often easier at the front … your head is more in the race then. 1/2 of the circuit meanders up, then there are several turns on a fast gentle decent. Near the top, past the start finish line, near the feed … (lap 8/20) I noticed Henk Vogels moving up …. I saw the move just as I saw Oscar the day before. Hank attacked hard, taking it over the top and burying himself down the backside … I was glued to his wheel. In my wheel was a Mroz rider (Wadecki) At the time I did not know his history … in the last few weeks he had won the Peace race, the Tour of Japan and took 2nd in the Tour of Solidarity just a few days before.

Henk and I rode 2-laps flat out then the Mroz rider (Pitor Wadecki) started to ride. The three of rode well in concert … we were flying … and held strongly to a 1:00 lead. I did not expect us to make it to the end … only to test the teams left in the peloton, and to take pressure off of Postal. Jack and Jones team tried hard for two laps to catch us … but actually lost a bit of time to us … eventually it was obvious that we would make it to the end … I had buried myself in this effort … we would have ridden 12/20 laps off the front with an 45kph average … very fast!!!! I soon had orders from the car to sit on … with 3 then 2 laps to go … I knew that Henk was fast … I knew that I would have to give it a surprise attack … but to sit on was not my style … anyway when is a free ride such a bad thing?? apparently on this day … I had buried myself and by sitting on. I think my body started to shut down … Wadecki made one strong attack on the uphill and when I tried to respond, my legs cramped severely … I had to sit back down and try to regain a rhythm … I did but I had to watch the two escape me … I was able to keep them in site … and see the final cat and mouse. But that it, a bit disappointing. I would take third … 3rd!

Trenton NJ 145kms

I was only able to ride hard in the end. The effects of yesterday’s effort took a while to go away. When it really counted, I was able to do my job … I made a few heroic efforts to bring back breaks. On the final lap Benoit and I rode 3/4 of if flat out … Mercury took over with 2kms to go … the rest is found in the results.

Philadelphia 256kms

What can I say about the Pro Championships????

We had a great situation from the start … Levi and Kirk were in the break of 20+- when it whittled down to 6, they were still both there …

Tactically it was perfect for us … although looking back, it may have made the race a bit too easy. because going into the last lap the field was just too large. A break escaped here on the last lap, and we had Stephane … Levi and I were given orders to bring it back. We came very close, leading into the Manayunk climb … Going up the climb I was still able to maintain a sensible position (top 15ish) I watched George make the bridge to the front group. (a couple of riders would get dropped and a couple would make the bridge.) This situation was what the team wanted … a small group with George in it., even better because Stephane was also there. Stephane drove this break very hard so that it would successfully stay away. George could then sit on.

Behind I was covering many attacks … there were still several riders and teams thinking that it would come back together or that they too could make it up to the front group.

The results of the sprint show it all … Henk Vogels, my companion form the race in Delaware attacked and soloed for the Philly Pro Championships win … a foreigner … so the

US Pro Jersey was still up for grabs … Fred Rodriguez won the sprint easily … George would end up 5th …

Fred becomes 2000 US Pro Champion for one year … I am happy for him … during the week he had finished 1,2,3,4, … and as of this late writing has a stage win in Swiss and is currently running 6th in GC. …as of stage 4.

So that’s if for a while … I am now riding the Tour of Catalonia … after the race in Delaware, I found out that I would not be doing Luxembourg … so I went home for a week of rest and altitude training. I look forward to a short break in July and then I will start to prepare for the second 1/2 of the season.

Marty

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