Michael bobbled and I took advantage, putting pressure on the pedals and pulling away. And then I was on my own. I decided not to push too hard, but stay steady. I knew that if I was on the run all day, I would push too hard and blow up, not what I was going for.
By the time we completed the short loop, they had reeled me in, passed me, and I let them go. Had to maintain my pace.
The day went by fairly uneventfully. I caught up to Dave at the bottom of Avery Creek. He had crashed. I hated to pass him like that, I made sure he was ok, and motored on. Once I got on Clawhammer, I saw him through the trees. I pushed a little harder, beating him to the line by 7 minutes. I didn't see Michael again until the finish, he gained another 15 minutes on me, totally about 25 mins. A lot of time, but a lot can happen. I'm not gonna stop fighting!