WOW!!! It has been forever since I gave the people who look here an update. I am alive, to those who may have thought otherwise. MAN!!! There has been a lot that has gone on the past 5 MONTHS!! The time has totally flown by, and I am having a blast.
March... I left you all in Mexico. On the queen stage there I didn't finish, and missed 3 days. I went home to get fresh air and solid training in before World Track Championships.
Track Worlds were next in Poland. I was totally amped and ready to go for a jersey there. All my training had been great, and a medal at my first World Cup gave me tons of confidence. My Dad and Grandpa came over to watch me race. It was awesome to have my Dad around to chat and BS with, was like having a big chunk of home with me. My first race was the Scratch race, as every world level scratch race it was a roll of dice. The dice didn't include me this time around. Next up was the Madison, before the race even started we knew we capable of a medal. We did everything right and by we I mean mostly Colby (my partner). He was on fire all trip, had one of his best points races and had amazing legs in the Madison. Me on the other hand was not so hot, I tried as best I could to keep up but at the most crucial point of the race I came apart. I think we ended up around 8th all said and done. I learned a lot from this trip and plan to bring a jersey or two home sooner than later.
April... After worlds I took a few days off to refresh my head from everything that happened at worlds, and was back to training for my trip to Europe on the road.
MAY....The first part of my trip was with the USA National team, and then would meet up with FELT-Holowesko for the 2nd half. My first race went well, 6th in a 1.2 Hoboken and then a 1.12 in France I had solid legs on a course that didn't suit me. The next race was another 1.2 in Holland, the day started okay legs felt good was following moves and what not. Not doing anything crazy just moving around the field like normal another guy and I bumped he flipped shit and did a reverse uppercut and nailed me right in the jaw. Surprisingly I didn't crash, but my jaw hurt like hell. I had no idea what to do about the situation, I floated back a little bit to figure out how bad I was hurt. Nothing seemed to be too wrong so I kept riding with a mouth that hurt like heck. Some 50-60k's later I found myself on the ground after getting break checked over a speed bump. I hit pretty hard and called it a day. Next race was Tour Haut Anjou in France. I road a really solid TT there, and had a great ride to get 2nd on the last day.
Next up was Olympias Tour in Holland with FELT, it is there World Championships which makes for a crazy race. I didn't have to hot of a race and got sick on the 3rd stage.
JUNE... It left me pretty rough to recover for U23 Paris Roubaix. At Pairs Roubaix I bridged to the early move to take pressure off our team leaders for the first half of the race. Once we got caught I had nothing left to hang on and ended up finishing on my own. It was a long long day, and I had to talk myself the whole way in. I wasn't not going to finish Pairs Roubaix.
After Roubaix I flew home to my much wanted bed to relax and get some chill time before I had to fly back out in 5 days to race Philly; Americas premiere one day race. I had no idea what to expect from the race and my body. All stories I've heard about Philly have been war stories, so I tried to not let it sike me out. From the gun on race day I took off, half out of joke, half out to get my legs started. Im not sure why I wanted to get my legs going, I had 156 miles to get them going. Soon enough I found my gap growing and the pack or anyone else uninterested in chasing. 1 guy tried to bridge to me but never really made it, my director told me to wait for him to get within 10 sec but that never happened. Once the gap started to stabilize, all I could do was laugh about the situation and keep riding. It got hot pretty quick and my butt started to cramp on the 4th lap. After taking a portion of the lap pretty relaxed my gap to the other solo chaser dropped and he caught me going into the 5th lap. I was only able to stay off one more lap before the field caught me, I gave it everything I had to try and stay with the group. I had locked up the KOM prize if I could finish the race, but I had payed for my adventure and was unable to finish. That was an epic journey I will never forget.
After Philly it was time to work on the track form to get ready for the AVC and a 6-day in Italy. I got a sweet care package from Oakley with the new Jawbones all in RX which is amazing. I re did my bathroom with my aunt who came to visit and help Pops with the tile downstairs. My bathroom is now amazing. Thank you Aunt Hjordis!!! Sold my Rambler. The AVC went well, I won the scratch race and got 2nd in the Miss and Out, Points Race and Madison. Mis-Calculated both the Miss and Out and Madison and left it a little late in the Points race. But I did put on a good show, and that was important to me. Had 2 badass Kiwis stay at the house. Jason Allen ( Jas ) and Hayden Godfrey ( Hash ). Both awesome dudes with a crazy experience and personality. Got a new bed!!!! Its amazing, the dog loves it too.
July.... Fironzola 6-day was the next adventure. Was a really cool race and perfect for what I wanted to do with training, could ride in the mornings then do a solid work load on the track. The racing wasn't crazy hard but it did have its moments. I was able to take home a Miss and Out win one night. Back home it was back to road training to get ready for another Road trip to Europe. I raced San Rafael Twilight and had a really good race ended up 3rd. Before I left to Europe a good friend passed while riding his bike. Chris "HippStar" Hipp will never be forgotten. I will miss you my friend!!!!
My first race of the trip was Ronde Van Valaams Brabandt, a 5 day stage race with a short TT on day 3. 1st day I was on the move of the day, seeing plenty of races that virtually end in the 1st 5k of a race I wanted to be there if it stayed away until the end. When it came back I didn't have my head on and the race went away. The rest of the week was to chase stage wins. I had another solid TT but had to go in the worst conditions of that day, that is bike racing. I was able to get 2 field sprints with the help of the team, but small groups were off the front. Our next race was Tour of Namur. A hard 5 days in the south of Belgium. Lots of BIG rollers and short steep climbs, I think we did over 5k of climbing per day, some days less some days more. The first days I road conservative as we were told in was a really hard race. Some of the days weren't has hard as we were told and also the guide book was off like no other, climbs were 10k to soon or late. They didn't have nearly enough flagmen to stand in front of road furniture at all. That caused some really bad crashes, one of the worst I've seen. After 4 days of not knowing much at all and nothing to lose, I did everything I could to be in the days big break. Knowing a lot of the guys in field were super tired from the previous racing; the break might have a chance to stay away. The break was off and I was in it. 25 or so guys total. A few guys were only 50seconds off the GC so they were going real strong to try and make it stick. I sat on and enjoyed the ride. 50k's or so to go some guys decided to have a nap in the middle of the group. I was able to dodge the carnage. The front half of the group wasnt sure to keep the gas on or wait up, and the back half was left chasing. The peleton was close behind, I wasn't going to sit up and say "the field is gonna catch the 5 guys ahead" I wanted to be the last guy caught to make sure i was in it to win it. I kept following wheels as the smaller group started to attack itself and it got smaller and smaller. It was finally down to 3 guys from the original move and a new guy with fresh legs. Feeling stellar I kept my head in the game to make sure I didn't make any mistakes. The last big obstacle for me was the last climb with 15 or so K to go. It was a lot shorter than I thought but long enough to drop one guy. Once we were over the top we got news that 2 guys were bridging up to us. The last 10k was pretty much all down hill, and with less than a min gap it was going to be close to keep it to the finish. Noel told me to sit and do little to no work and let the fresh legs do the work. I did just that, I knew with 2k to go we were gonna keep it tell the end. After the long week of misplaced signs and what not I was totally unsure if the 1k sign was right. I kept an eye on the 2 guys I thought were going to try a trick on the end and the other sprinter for the finish. The other sprinter got the jump on me with 250ish to go but I was able to run him down and take it at the line with a bike throw. My first W in Europe, what an amazing feeling.
August... For the past week we have been maxin' and relaxin' recovering from Namur and making sure we are 110% for the next to races in Spain. Vuelta Zomora and Vuelta Pallencia. Wish me luck as there is a lot of climbing ahead of me.
I will do my best to keep ya in the loop. Also check out twitter.com/The_Hollywood and Robo.to/DHOLLA for quick updates and silly short videos. Hopefully I will have a Flip soon and can do a couple videos for yal.