The only strategy senior Nick Thiery of Cutters needed to win Saturday’s Miss N Outs was the willingness to take a risk.
In Saturday’s final heat, Thiery outlasted Bears’ Riley Figg, Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s Joe Krahulik, Black Key Bulls’ Will Ottenweller and Xavier Martinez and Gray Goat’s Brad Klingele to take home the victory.
Going in to the heat, Thiery knew that anything could happen.
That’s why he didn’t worry about having a game plan.
“I don’t have a strategy,” Thiery said. “You just gotta race with some balls and see what happens, and it worked out today. You can do everything right and still lose, and just because you win doesn’t mean you did everything right.”
Thiery also credited his willingness to lose as a factor of the success he had Saturday.
“I feel like a lot of people weren’t willing to make the big moves, except for Joe, Joe had a hell of a ride,” Thiery said. “A lot of other people were too afraid. They got swamped and didn’t ride with balls.”
Saturday was also a big day for Martinez.
On Wednesday, Martinez won individual time trials and was the only rider to break the 2:20 barrier.
Going into Saturday, Martinez said he felt there was a target on his back.
“Whenever you win an event you become a threat to other people,” Martinez said. “In some of my earlier heats people would attack in ways that wouldn’t necessarily work in Miss N Outs to try to drain my legs so I wouldn’t be as strong later on.”
The biggest challenge for Martinez was the difference in approach between individual time trials and Miss N Outs.
He said he felt he had the potential to win, but after realizing he had made a miscalculation it was all but over.
“In ITTs you’re able to shut your brain off and ride really hard, but in Miss N Outs you gotta be paying attention to every little thing,” Martinez said. “I miscounted the amount of people left in the heat, and I found myself off in the last position with about a straightaway and a half left. I just didn’t have the legs to close that.”
Martinez finished fifth out of six in the final heat.
He saw Saturday’s result from a team perspective as bittersweet — disappointed that no one from the Black Key Bulls won but happy that the team had two riders in the final heat to help extend its spring series lead.
Thiery said his victory felt nice but does not mean much to him.
However, he does believe it helped boost team spirit.
“Everyone was happier, especially going into team pursuit,” Thiery said. “It helps to see the Cutter name back on top where it belongs. At the end of the day, I really don’t care about spring series because I’m here to win a race.”