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LA World Cup Classic... Continued

When you climb out of the team pits and onto the track it’s like stepping out onto a large basketball court. Your perspective instantly changes and you can feel the business end of time itself. The track seems to come to life as an endless highway of wood whose speed limits are the limits of the human bodies we watch race. The events ticked by over the three day event and I marveled at how different each rider approached their craft. Take Taylor Phiney for instance...

I was six to seven feet away and looking up at him as he was looking over me to the timing clock behind on my left. When he first climbed on the bike he was visibly tense and nervous. Natural human emotions for a seventeen year old guy on a world class stage and riding for a gold medal. Then he pushed himself up off his aero-bars, stretched out his arms and started deep breathing exercises. With every breath he seemed to be charming himself to sleep. The clock starts its count down and by the time he gets the go, he’s like a sleeping cat that springs to life. “The Zone.” The level of concentration flattened me senseless. Everything poured into a moment, then another moment, then another ‘till he clawed his way to a gold medal before our very eyes.