Tuesday, 8 June 2010


The normal easy pace until Doncaster Road didn't happen tonight. A dude in Giant kit and I rolled off on the front like normal but by Kirby Rd he was half wheeling me. I figured I had miscalculated my recovery when it started to hurt. Hindsight tells me that it wasn't just me, no one behind us was talking any more, normally it's very chatty.

I let Giant boy go on Doncaster, opting to sit in the train on the back of his wheel. The pace was high and I wasn't able/willing to respond when a few guys attacked at the top. This was a shit tonne harder than last week.

I tried to find wheels on Williamsons Rd but decided to preserve momentum rather than slow down and keep drafting. This left me dangling off the front before being swamped by everyone who had a semblance of a power to weight ratio. Watching rider after rider stream past I wished there was a shortcut I could take. I was worried I wouldn't be able to finish the ride, and the Shell climb is never nice to me when I've done it tough on Williamsons Rd.

Up Foote St I dug hard and tried to hold onto one of the Italo club boys, sitting in second wheel I went from "oh this is nice", through "it's starting to burn now", to "oh dear lord it hurts" in a few hundred metres. By the school, despite some serious soul searching, I couldn't do it any more and came to a virtual stand still. 2nd wheel to last wheel with one pop. Oldie

I paced myself up Burgundy St, giving myself a few rabbits I knew I should be able to catch. Doing so helped restore some confidence in my legs.

The pace up the cutting was decent, as opposed to ball tearing, and let me think I might have a chance for Heidelberg/Heidelberg. A few dudes pulled strongly to the bottom, but as we started up it was obvious that no one wanted to do all the work on the front and give everyone else a free tow. With the pace slowing I reached a "now or never" moment and hit it up the right. It was earlier than I prefer, but I mashed down hard and kept doing so after I sat down. The presence I felt on my wheel never made it up to my hip, and I crossed the top in first with serious concern about the limited oxygen my gaping mouth and heaving chest were able to acquire.

I'm glad I did TdB rather than the Fitzroy Cycles ride. Sure it was a rude awakening, sure most of these guys are not only good riders, but good climbers, but I honestly thought I was starting to get some comparable form. Oh well, it shows how much work I've got to go before Preston Mountain Classic later this month.

D: 33.0km
A: 480m


D: 35.4km
A: 220m

PMPW: 94kg

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