Dashing for Cash on the 4th of July
As we so often write about on the TBD Journal New York cyclists are #blessed with one of the busiest USAC race calendars in country, the vast majority of it accessible entirely via bike or public transportation. Amidst this plethora of races it can be tough for individual races to stand-out. Sure we have our favorite one-off races like the Orchard Beach Criterium and the upcoming Tour de Fort Lee Criterium but with so many series (CRCA, Castelli, L&C, Rockleigh, FBF Tuesday, FBF Thursday, Kissena, etc) the calendar can almost blur into one never ending loop of Central or Prospect Park.
However one event that always stands out on the calendar is We Stand United's Dash for Cash that is held every Fourth of July on the broken concrete runways of Floyd Bennett Field. Given the huge number of FBF races - there are three every week during the month of July - the Dash for Cash stands out from the crowd with a big prize pool and cash primes nearly every lap. And perhaps even more importantly there is also a warm and jovial atmosphere that starts with race director Horace Burrowes. Races may not start on time but with Horace's ability to tell stories on the start line and a smorgasbord of burgers, watermelon and soft drinks on offer post-race it is hard not to smile while spending Independence Day under the beating sun at the Dash For Cash.
This was also the first Dash for Cash to feature a women's field, an addition that has been a long time coming. There is still more to be done: despite being the second largest field the Women's prize pool was less than one third of the Elite Men's field (the Elite Men's field had fewer riders pre-reg than the women). But Horace and We Stand United committed to improved prize equality for future editions of Dash for Cash so we're hopeful there will be more good news in the years to come. Kudos to Etsu from Veselka for pushing hard for a women's field.
As for the actual racing it was an extremely warm and highly competitive day at FBF. The women's field started things off with with a pair of Pickle Juice riders, fresh off their victory at the Mengoni Grand Prix, winning not just the race but also every single cash prime. It was an impressive performance to say the least. When the Elite Men rolled off the start line many hours later the sun was at its most brutal. But that didn't seem to have much impact on the out of town pros that rolled in from T-Town to absolutely shred the race with some of the strongest racers in the local scene dropped well before the halfway point.
While the TBD and CMD squads may have been shut out of the cash prize pools amidst these stacked fields it was a great day of racing all the same - particularly when we finished it off with a short spin to the beach to relax and enjoy the rest of the Fourth of July holiday. It was a hard day of racing but a pretty terrific day of biking and beaching overall. We'll definitely be back for the 2019 edition of the Dash for Cash.