Winning the 35 + Overall at the Tour De Murrieta for a Cause, By Michael Johnson

Three days of tough, challenging, gritty racing in which the promoter of The Tour De Murrieta puts on, is what Monster Media Racing is all about. This past weekend was one of several key events throughout the year in which Monster Media Racing focuses on where we can get together as a team, race hard, go for the victory, have fun, and help raise awareness in the fight against mesothelioma. We started last year by sponsoring the Dana Point Pro Race named “The John Johnson Pro Mens Classic”. We will continue with that this year and having Monster Media Racing involved with our mission in 2014 is incredible.

Scoring points is the name of the game when the whistle blows each day at the Tour De Murrieta. Day one consisted of a challenging time trial with a little bit of everything including a dirt section that would make or break your time or your bike. We finished with 5 guys in the top 7. My teammate Karl Bordine crushed it and ended up with the second fastest time of the day! Besting all but one in the Pro field. Incredible ride. Being an omnium in which it is a point based race rather than overall best time, stacking the results helps by having cards to play going into the next two days.

Day two is a six-turn criterium with a couple of bumpy turns and some stamped concrete. A windy day made for the group having the advantage over one to two riders trying to stay away in a break. The teams’ goal was to cover any moves, and bring back anything threatening the overall general classification. I rode the top six places all day staying out of trouble and watching anything that looked threatening. Stage racing requires a little more tactics due to the fact the ultimate goal is to win the overall, so the name of the game is consistency every day. A field sprint was imminent and two of us finished in the top 10. Surf City Cyclery finished first and second, with myself in third. Their best placed general classification rider finished outside the top 10 putting me in the lead with a several point cushion.

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Day three’s 50 mile circuit race is usually pretty fast consisting of flat roads and a couple rollers. Our goal was just to monitor the moves and keep any breaks to only a few riders, making sure that any of those were not a threat based on their points, so as to make sure I would lock up the overall win. The day finished with a group of four staying away to the line. We had two Monster Media Racing riders out of the four and were able to score the win with James “I ride five hours a week” Gunn. My teammates gave it their all for me in the last one kilometer to keep the speed high and safe. I finished up front in the field sprint and locked up the overall win. My teammate Chris Demarchi freshly back from a broken leg ended up in third overall. Awesome ride.

I dedicate my win and the teams success to Ron Hill, a recently diagnosed victim of mesothelioma sustained from his career as a pipefitter, who I have had the pleasure of meeting this past month. I am extremely honored to be able to help Ron with his long road ahead. He is a great man with a very supportive family. Monster Media Racing is here for you sir.

1st overall
1st overall team classification
2 stage wins

By Michael Johnson, Monster Media Racing
Photos courtesy Michael Johnson

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