great to read some good stories. of course, all that matters is the width of a tire!
having the lead car slot in behind me was a great feeling. i had no thought about holding it, no looking back (until ~1.5km out where the course turns back on itself and offers a natural look). no early celebrations even as the announcer called out my name -- i worked as hard as i could for every second as this was stage 1 of a stage race that is often decided by seconds. i only savored it after crossing the line.
the most interesting part for me was that i literally wanted to quit the race about 20 miles before the finish. i thought about how i would explain that to my young boy. i couldn't.
my family was in town for that one but (wisely, IMO) was spending a 100+ day in the river instead of hanging out around a finish line. i had a feeling about that day but didn't want to force them to go spend time there in the heat.