The USA Pro Cycling Challenge is a stage race through mountains and cities of Colorado. It starts in Colorado Springs and ends a few days later in Denver.
Several weeks ago, during a meeting between Salvagetti and Mavic, the race was discussed:
Mavic: “Are you interested in riding in a Mavic car during one of the stages?”
Salvagetti: “What does that mean? Like jumping out and helping the racers?”
Mavic: “Nope, just sit there and look pretty.”
Salvagetti: “Which stage would you recommend?”
Mavic: “Stage 2 should be incredible!”
Salvagetti: “Yeah, I’m in.”
Then came the bragging. Scott went on nonstop to people about how he was going to get to ride in the Mavic #1 car and how he was going to get to see these racers go over these huge passes.
Fast forward to 18 hours before the start of stage 2…
Scott finally found a ride to Gunnison and a place to stay (in exchange for some delicious whiskey). That left him sprinting to the Greyhound station for a 5 hour bus ride. Once there, things settled down for a long and crazy day.
Suzy Wargin of 9 News got the sweet seat in Mavic #1, so Scott got the spot in Mavic #2. As it turns out this is how the cars work for neutral support.
Mavic #1: Sits in the back of the peloton and helps out if needed.
Mavic #2: Sits at the front of the race but will drop back to cover the gap once the breakaway group is further than 1 minute ahead
Mavic #3: Covers #1 in the event that they stop to help or are called ahead for a second breakaway group
So, Scott actually scored the better spot… sorry Suzy.
If you didn’t follow the race it went like this:
Group leaves. Big nasty wreck on cattle guard. Small breakaway group (Mavic dropped in to offer support). Cottonwood Pass (SUPER INTENSE). Descend. Peloton sucks back in the riders. Crest Independence Pass (UNBELIEVABLE TURNOUT). Crazy descent into Aspen. Hincapie wins!
By this storyline you can see all the places where the Mavic #2 car could see some cool stuff. This will explain to you why the pictures and video are limited to what they are limited to. Interestingly, as everyone crested the final climb, the Mavic car was the first to come through and the first to get to Aspen, which meant we went very fast (easily close to 70mph). If you haven’t driven that fast down a twitchy mountain road, please don’t.