I was feeling strong on the hill climbs and remember when Wayne commented how bad everyone was looking. Knew that I'd want to be in front no later than the base of the climb if nothing else to avoid getting stuck behind a slow wheel. So sure enough about 3km out, I purposefully "surfed" up to the front intent on holding a wheel in the top 10 before anyone took off. At one point a fella from Apex yelled at me about moving over so he could have a wheel I was on. I ignored him and he started hitting my left leg I think with his handlebars?! That's a pretty dumb way to try to move in, as he's more likely to crash out than actually do any good. What he didn't see was a slow rider dropping back on the right side that I was avoiding, so I explained the circumstances to him... loudly... and told him to back off. We talked later, and I still think he must have just poor line handling skills or something. Is it possible to actually do anything by running your handlebars under someones leg? I don't thank that works does it? Good way to crash out though.
Pretty much I just ignored and marked the dude, and focused on the task at hand. Apex had 4 at the front,another Cucina guy, polka dot dude, and me in the mix. So they never were able to get a lead off as there were plenty of people willing to reel in the efforts (or be in the break with them).
Base of the climb a junior (couldn't be older than 16-17 yrs) and an Apex took off, I pursued. Random Apex dude blew up about halfway and I never saw him again, junior (weighing in at 110lbs soaking wet) kept on chugging, and I pursued. Eventually we saw the 200m sign passby and I waited on my "sprint" until just a bit later, really only stepping up the cadence enough to close the gap on junior guy. Didn't have quite enough distance to catch him, and actually 2 others passed me right at the line.
Great race, wished I had another lap or 2. Got to visit with a friend while waiting for the masters to finish, and really enjoyed seeing our cat 5 guys making the tough climb, and Wayne scoring a point too!