The Breakaway Artist....
Left is Avery Gilbert. Center is Christopher Pulomena. Right is Andre Abdool.
I would like to congratulate Christopher Pulomena for winning the overall Cat 4/5 field Yellow jersey of our inaugural HH Racing Thursday FBF Race Series. I lost counts in how many times he managed to break away from the field and would just race solo to victory. He is currently a Cat 4. It won’t be long he would be a Cat 3 soon. With the way he raced, I almost thought that he has been racing for a while. It turns out that he is a new comer in road racing. He just turned Cat 4 early this year too.
Christopher grew up in Montauk, Long Island. Since in his youth, he grew up surrounded by bikes because his uncle is the owner of the Montauk Bike Shop. He grew up mostly riding in BMX and cross country mountain biking. At the age of 14, he was helping out his uncle and wrenching in his shop. It wasn’t until after college and to have moved to Nassau County that he developed his love for road cycling. He began to participate in the weekly group rides and eventually was convinced to ride the Gran Fondo NY in 2016. He came to the GFNY 2016 with high hopes and expectations since he has been training for it under various fitness programs. However, his 2016 GFNY ride didn’t turn out the way he hoped. Accord to Christopher, “I cramped, I cried, I stopped a lot, and it was a long day.” That motivated him to train more and, by 2017, he finished the GFNY 2 hours faster. His 2017 season included the Green Mountain stage race, and many local races as well, such as the Merrick Bicycle criterium and the Fort Lee Crit. Christopher has been very active as well in 2018, including competing in our Prospect Park race series and the CRCA Fort Lee Crit.
Christopher racing at the CRCA Fort Lee Crit 2018.
Christopher racing in one of the early morning Prospect Park races 2018.
He joined the Merrick Bicycle racing team when he started working for Merrick Bicycle in 2017. Michael Hammer is the owner of Merrick Bicycle. The Merrick Bicycle racing team is still very new and has about 15 riders, including John Arias, the leader jersey sponsor for the Verrazano Team racing Thursday night race series. It was John who introduced him to our HH Racing Thursday FBF Race Series.
Christopher with Michael Hammer during the last race of the series, 7/19/18.
Christopher with his team mate John Arias.
You should know by now that Christopher has a big engine. He can time trial. He loves the HH Racing Thursday FBF Race Series although he isn’t too fond of the race venue. Since racing at FBF, traditionally, is largely racing on straight roads connecting to another straight road, the course layout suits his time trialing skill.
Christopher recalling his solo victory in his first race in our HH Racing race series:
"In the first race of the series I counter attacked a counter attack half way through the first lap. It was just a move I couldn’t resist making. Only one rider came with me, but he quickly abandoned the effort, he told me I was “really fast” before dropping back to the pack. I was lucky though, that the group didn’t decide to chase me immediately, probably because most people assumed it was too early for a solo break off the front to stick in the first lap. I think everyone, including myself, thought that I may have went too early at that time. But luckily I made it stick. I’d never had a yellow jersey before, but let me tell you, once you get it you don’t want to give it up. After that day I knew I’d want to come back and defend it for the rest of the series. I found out really quick that it’s a lot harder to get away from the bunch when you are in bright yellow."
Christopher on the attack and riding away from the field during the 6/7/18 race.
Christopher soloed to victory during the 6/7/18 race.
Another solo victory during a torrential downpour, 6/28/18.
Another solo victory during the reverse course 6/14/18.
He thoroughly enjoyed racing in the reverse course, although certain pothole sections cracked his rim in the process. He liked the horse shoe turn, but it ruined his breakaway move, according to Christopher. Overall, all in good fun and keeping the racing interesting. However, like most riders, he would like to see the Cat4/5 field race duration to get extended beyond 30 minutes. For the future goal, he is hoping to score enough upgrade points to upgrade to Cat 3.
He has no particular favorite riders to follow other than those who loves to share their power numbers. He is particular impressed with Colin Strickland because he does not hide his power number.
For more information about the Merrick Bicycle racing team and Merrick Bicycle, you can visit http://merrickbicycles.com/