The last race of Speed Week happened in Gaffney, South Carolina. This was a new stop for Speed Week from years past so it was a new course for everyone. The course was a simple four-corner course on wide roads with a long uphill stretch through the start/finish and a super-fast downhill stretch on the back. We started at 8pm, so the course quickly got dark, which played a big factor in the race (and has been a bit of a common theme here at Speed Week).
From the time the gun went off the field strung out immediately and stayed single file for virtually the whole race. There were constant attacks with small groups getting away but nothing ever lasting more than a lap. The team road well, representing itself well in all the major moves. With about 10 laps to go we knew it was going to be a field sprint so we all gathered at the front to hopefully lead it out like we did the night before in Spartenburg.
Unfortunately, things got very hectic in the closing laps. I had an ill-timed mechanical that took me out with 3 laps to go. Then a solo rider attacked and got a large enough gap to hold it for an impressive win.
In the end, Speed Week was a great way for the team to fine-tune the many important parts that constitute the collective teamwork. We earned two podium spots during the week and came out as a much better team.