Saturday, 30 June 2012


Prahran - Mt Pleasant - Smiths Gully - Strathewen - Watsons Creek - Prahran:
I'd hoped for a few people to play with today, but in the end it was just Craig Peacock and I winding our way through the back roads beyond Eltham on what turned out to be yet another cracking winter's day.


Craig is working towards the Leadville 100 and I just wanted to see what 3 weeks of non road training had done to me road legs.

The signs were positive for me, I was able to dispatch Craig on every hill, though getting myself into the relaxed upper body tempo state wasn't as easy as it was pre-break. Still I'm going to put a tick in the climbing box, while the question of flat(er) road performance needs some more data to judge if I'm riding how I want/need.


As for getting back onto the road bike, it was bloody nice to have all the data from Steve Hogg to get my it back to exactly how it was before. In his information pack is a chart with measurements and the method(s) used to record them. The foot inserts that I mentioned a while back didnt give me any drama, so either I wasnt going hard enough or my foot has adapted a bit to deal with actual support.

I'm still not at a point where I'd encourage anyone/everyone to go drop a gorilla on Steve's services, it's mighty expensive*, and there are other options out there.  How about I leave it just now with the statement "I'm not disappointed I went"?

Strava link.

D: 162.1km
A: 2,752m

PMPW: 94kg

* Unless you compare it to what we spend on bikes/wheels.

Friday, 29 June 2012



D: 9.6km
A: 121m

Blackburn Friday Track:
1 x 1/4 lap Power jump @ 82"
1 x Flying 100m @ 82"
2 x 1/4 lap Power jumps @ 98" (30km/h)
1 x 1/2 lap Power jumps @ 98" (30km/h) 
1 x 200m MACC @ 98"
1 x 200m MACC @ 106"
5 x 1 1/2 lap Match sprints @ 82"

I skipped my rear wheel around a few times in the power jumps, I so desperately wanted to beat Jack.

The MACCs were good, but that should go without saying. Having your own personal wind break for maximum power efforts is good. Very good. So much so that the idea has gone beyond cliche, it's a truism.

For the match sprint work I talked with the juniors I raced, the theme for the night was sneaking height when following.

PMPW: 93kg

Thursday, 28 June 2012


6am NRR:
Oof. That took some effort. The stats tell me I averaged 170bpm for the ride and generally I felt like I was lacking legs. Sitting in was ok, but step out into the wind, or worse yet, roll through the front and I was in the box.

After my first two times at the front put paid to the idea I might roll turns today I sat on and waited for the sprint, but as we roudned Ormond Esplanade even that became doubtful.

Post ride coffee I picked up my bike to roll home and noted a noise, I knew what it meant, but if I told you what it was it would ruin the surprise. I gave my front wheel a wiggle then span it to make sure it was rock and roll, it was. I gave the back wheel a wiggle then spun it... it stopped almost instantly. It's possible that the brake had moved when I leant it against the wall, but it may also be the cause of my legless feeling. I suppose this weekends rides will tell.

Strava link.

D: 42.2km
A: 153m

PMPW: 92kg

Wednesday, 27 June 2012


I rolled a few extras before and after work. Before work was a planned thing, some kms along the foreshore (with the risk of frost bitten toes) was a delightful way to start the day.

The ones after work, well, they were special. They involved collecting my road frame and taking it home to be rebuilt. I know I've sooked a fair amount the last few weeks, sorry about that, but it's really got to me. The relief in having a proper road bike again... well it's difficult to describe.

D: 34.2km
A: 284m

PMPW: 93kg

Tuesday, 26 June 2012



D: 23.5km
A: 410m

Brunswick Tuesday Track:
This is going to have to be short, because I am struggling to recall how everything went down tonight.

I hit the scratch race with a touch over a lap to go and help out for my first a-grade win. I'm pretty happy about that, because... well being disappointed with a win seems silly.

The points race started well with me securing 1st in the 1st sprint, getting rolled in the 2nd, getting 2nd in the 3rd and then it went to pot when my brain lost the plot and I totally missed an attack 8 laps to go. I rolled the rest of the race to get the track time, but with two Kosdown guys off the front, 3 guys chasing and then a decent gap to me, it was all over.

The final race, a combined A and B grade motor pace was excruciating. I noted Jess Morgan standing at the finish line signalling to the moto to lift the pace waaaay too often. By the end it was down to the A-graders and Spiro. Out best guesses put the final laps behind at speeds between 55 and 60km/h, sadly my computer had turned itself off (doh). As the bike pulled off I was 2nd wheel, Luca Giacomin had the front and to my relief he seemed happy to stay there, so I left him there for a lap, then at 2 and a half laps out, I went around and put what remained of my legs through my pedals. I hoped that Oli (Le Grice) had my wheel like we'd planned, but either the blood pounding through my ears muted his voice, or he never let me know, because it was radio silence as I tried to eek out the last few watts. Oli had in fact made my wheel and came through as my motivation waned, only getting rolled on the final straight.

PMPW: 94kg

Monday, 25 June 2012


Keith tells me my road frame is on it's way back and should arrive some time this week. It's got a new dropout and all my old bits will go straight back on. No money spent is a pretty good result given I'll likely acquire a new bike later this year when the new Di2 makes an appearance.

D: 16.2km
A: 300m

PMPW: 95kg

Sunday, 24 June 2012


Melburn Roobaix:
Skinny tyres off and knobbies back in, if Melbourne was going to rain on the annual festival of cobbles that is Melburn Roobaix, and given that yesterday I'd used up all my luck weather wise it was highly likely it would, then I wanted some fatboy tyres under me for hooking through the alleys of unsuspecting suburbs.

Thankfully I was wrong about the weather, but I stand by my choice of the cross bike, comfortable for rolling around with Jarrad, Sime and co., and wickedly fun for carving rabbits over the bluestone sectors.

Finally getting to Brunswick velodrome to find that not only did they have a beer vendor serving Mountain Goat, that that same vendor had EFTPOS facilities was certainly the topping on a great morning with mates.

Strava link.

D: 74.5km
A: 611m

ABOC Sprint @ DISC:
4 x 1/2 lap Power jumps @ 100" (30km/h)
1 x Flying 200 @ 100"
1 x Flying 200 pairs @ 100" (Break & pass)
1 x 1 1/2 lap Match sprints @ 82"

The great idea that was beer in the sun post Melburn Roobaix started to feel like a bad idea while sitting on the rollers and progressed to "horrible idea" status by the end of each effort.

I never got as hovering over a bin though, that honour went to Chris Ray. Good to have you back Chris. :D

PMPW: 94kg

Saturday, 23 June 2012


Prahran - Mt Pleasant - Strathewen - Yarrraglen - Prahran:
23c tyres and a 50t chainring on my CX bike was as close to a road bike as I was going to get today, and that was enough to get me out on my first road ride in weeks.


Pete and Will were kind enough to let me tag along with them as once past Mt Pleasant Rd they adventured down roads none of us had seen before.


Many of these roads turned to hard packed dirt, most of them features climbs upwards of 20% gradients, all of them stretched me to my limit. Rather, it was the boys that stretched me, the road became culpable when it failed to intervene despite my obviously laboured breathing and rocketing heart rate.


Still, climbs where my forward progress seemed more limited by the strength / endurance of my arms rather than that of my legs aside, it was a lovely day to be on a bike. The forecast showers never got close enough to wet us, and the sun popped out to ease our roll through apple orchard lined back roads.


I was glad when Will's legs finally gave in after a morning of treating hills and myself with disdain, it meant the the last 10km of the roll to home and a massive feed was done at a leisurely pace.

Strava link.

D: 135.2km
A: 2,185m

PMPW: 94kg

Friday, 22 June 2012


Blackburn Friday Track:
1 x 1/4 lap Power jump @ 82"
1 x Flying 100m @ 82"
3 x 1/4 lap Power jumps @ 98" (30km/h)
1 x 200m MACC @ 98"
1 x 200m MACC @ 102"
4 x 1 1/2 lap Match sprints @ 82"

If your football team doesn't play until Saturday or Sunday, then I highly recommend rocking this session. Cheap track time FTW!


D: 9.1km
A:  103m

CE: 1

PMPW: 93kg

Thursday, 21 June 2012


Extended riding has been cancelled on account of the weather and softness

D: 15.5km
A: 117m

PMPW: 94kg

Wednesday, 20 June 2012


Mark this day in your calendar with a red pen, historians will talk about it for centuries to come... I've got nothing to say.

D: 14.6km
A: 177m

PMPW: 94kg

Tuesday, 19 June 2012


The CX bike is now a part time road bike, it is in desperate need of some bigger chain rings, but as a stop gap, it'll work.

D: 7.5km
A: 160m

Brunswick Tuesday Track:
There was a decent A-grade field tonight, with a bunch of guys I'd normally expect to see on Thursday showing up. I'll admit it made me nervous, and put a dint in my already low motivation.

In the scratch race I held on to the early attacks by the Kosdown boys, who seemed to be trying to shake Dave Kelly off (he'd just pulled a turn and swung up), what I couldn't cover was a move just after my own turn, 6ish laps to go.

Next was a progressive points race, and my legs were still telling my stories about the first race. I chose to go after Mitch who'd gone clear for the first two sprints, and managed to hold me off for the third. To ensure I got some points on the board I kept the valves full open to take 4 points for the 4th sprint. Swinging up the track I was happy to see I'd stretched the bunch and broken a couple of riders, but as I rolled down it became quite obvious that I'd broken myself as well.

Which brings us to the final event, a 50 lap points race. I was really lacking motivation, but turned up to the start line anyway. I rolled the line for 3rd in the first sprint, kept the pace going after then rolled my turns and tried to hang on when everyone attacked. 20 or so laps to go I got split off with Oli Le Grice and worked turns for half a dozen laps before we got lapped and Oli took off to try and hold the leaders. I knew I didn't have the legs for it so kept rolling around solo. A few laps later I saw the remains of Oli's legs on the side of the track, then I saw Dave Kelly's, eventually I was lapped again by the lead trio. No, that makes it sound like I simply just rode around until my second lapping, I was in a bad place, I hurt A LOT and fought an almost overwhelming desire to just pull the pin and stop the pain. At one point I looked up, saw 16 laps and almost cried thinking about how long that would take. Ok, so back to the lead riders coming through to put me 2 laps down. I could see they were all suffering so jumped on the back. When attacks seemed imminent I eased up the track out the way. Surprisingly I was able to catch back on after each kick by keeping my pace steady. The last time was 4 laps out, the guys were starting to fox each other, so I rolled through underneath and slowly built the pace until half a lap to go they all kicked through me for their own finish.

I'm not pleased about my do or die level of fight. The will to kill myself to cover a move or to make my own stick.

I am pleased with my level of fight to the bitter end. The will to keep grinding away and not give up.

PMPW: 95kg

Monday, 18 June 2012


I stayed up way too late tonight fitting new (CX*) cranks and road wheels to the cross bike so I can get a couple of sneaky kms in this week.

D: 19.8km
A: 151m

PMPW: 95kg

* I refuse to call them compact!

Sunday, 17 June 2012


ABOC Sprint @ DISC:
1 x Flying 100m pairs @ 86" (follow)
3 x 1/2 lap Power jumps @ 102" (30km/h)
1 x Flying 200 pairs @ 102" (Break & pass)
1 x Flying 200 @ 102"
2 x Over, over, over @ 82"
2 x 1 1/2 lap Match sprints @ 82"

3 days and 3 different bikes, it's pretty hard to suggest that life is tough, but I think I'm up to the challenge. Life is so tough. Actually that was easier than I thought, I just pressed a few keys and voila, it was said. A similar action got me a fancy French word. God these keys are magical, unlike life, which is pretty tough without a road bike.

Aaaaanyway, I worked with Jack again for all the race gear work, which I find a pleasure and a challenge all rolled up into one. He's faster than me, but not by enough to make the results a given.

CE: 1

PMPW: 93kg

Saturday, 16 June 2012


Blackburn - Park Orchards - Warrandyte - Blackburn:
The first time we left BJ's for some dirty riding the morning was pretty cold and my legs were pretty flat. After I snapped a joining link in my chain mid trail and we rolled back to BJ's garage to fix it, well the second start was great. The sun had knocked the mercury above 6° and my legs had had a little bit of a roll to get them moving.

We (BJ, Craig Peacock and I) looped our way our through the Mullem Mullem Creek trails, through those in Park Orchards and on to the ones in the back of Warrandyte. The pace was never too hot, as the damp clay based earth, and perpendicular pine roots were always eager to punish indiscretions. In short, it was a good morning, to be on fat tyres with a couple of like minded dudes.


The flatter early trails gave way to longer climbs in Warrandyte, which I took as an opportunity to stretch my legs out and see how a few weeks without a road bike and any serious climbing had left them. The signs were pointing to "yeah, not too bad" and I was happy about it. Craig peeled off early to keep from over extending an injury leaving BJ and I to loop back through some trails on the way home.

The longer climbs gave way to steeper climbs, culminating in a fire road somewhere in Currawong Bush Park, that Strava tells me topped out at 51.8% gradient. That burnt a match, or possibly all of them. Refilling our bottles and eating a bar a few minutes later, I had to admit to Brian that it might have resulted in me being running close to empty. Thankfully he agreed to turn us home, after "just one or two quick detours".

Strava link.

D: 68.5km
A: 1,649m

PMPW: 94kg

Friday, 15 June 2012


Dirty Deeds CycloCross:
The race was pretty short, just two laps of a course that wound its way round the Brunswick velodrome's infield, then ripped back around the velodrome itself. I started on the front but didn;t have the mojo to go elbows out through the turns, and lost a couple more spots over the jumps/remounting. The velodrome section, well that was my time to shine, claiming back masses of ground and several spots.

With the racing done I went and grabbed a beer. Halfway through I found out the racing wasn't done and begun to feel conflicted about the beer. I did the only logical thing and skulled it to ensure it wasnt sitting too fresh on my stomach for the handicap.

Much like the first race I lost ground to others during remounting and had the added fun of losing ground through the mud as my fat arse sank my tyres deeper than everyone else. Still even with all that and the traffic of slower/earlier starting riders I managed to get myself back up for my 5th (again), mostly thanks to rocking the big dog round the concrete of the drome.

So that's it, first race done, and some specific points to improve on. Bring on proper racing!

I'd like to note this photo is Mikkeli Godfree's and I've totally used it without asking. Mik... if I make any money from this post, I'll cut you in for half.

Strava link.

D: 3.0km
A: 8m

Rolling home with Mik and a couple of others I started to feel the fun of the cross bike. Finally nailing the rhythm of a bunny hop and generally just carving turns. Yeah, I'm definitely looking forward to racing more.

D: 30.0km
A: 211m

PMPW: 93kg

Thursday, 14 June 2012


Slowly slowly I'm starting to feel more comfortable moving myself ans the cross bike around. Ross suggested the DDCX "prologue"tomorrow might result in some foul smelling mud caking both me and my bike... but even knowing that, I think I'll race. The practice is surely worth it when it comes time to race properly.

D: 15.4km
A: 92m

PMPW: 92kg

Wednesday, 13 June 2012


Ok, yesterday might not have come with the desired 1st place(s) but today, with the aid of hindsight and legs that threaten to cramp when I stand up, I can say that I certainly achieved some good old fashioned time in the box. Oof, smother me in butter because I'm toast!*

D: 16.2km
A: 165m

PMPW: 93kg

* If science goes on to prove that I am in fact, not toast, then I reserve the right to retract this offer to smother me in butter... or not.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012


I have some poor feelings about last week that weren't quite coalescing into structured thought until I read
this post by Brendan.

"I've said in the past that in this game - or any other competitive endeavour, really - uncertainty equals failure. There's simply no room for doubt, for questioning, for thinking too much."

Not having a road bike has made me stop and think about training, rather than just roll out on skinny tyres to NRR, Mt Pleasant (et al) or the Dandies, I now have to make a choice. Choice creates doubt and doubt is the confidence killer.

D: 9.4km
A: 151m

Brunswick Tuesday Track:

The results sheets say this week was more successful than last, the same two seconds (Scratch and Points) with a bonus third (Win and out), but I feel a touch more disappointed.

I wanted a win in the scratch race, I even thought I had it in the bag, but a throw on the line saw me miss out by a tyre width to a guy who I thought I'd burnt with my attack. Backing up a bit, all the way back to the start in fact, there were only 5 guys in a-grade tonight, and not a lot of pace in the turns. I had the misfortune of being on the front with 2 to go, so rolled a half lap, swung up the track... then stayed there. I honestly dont remember when I kicked, 2 and a bit or 1 and a bit to go. Rolling down off the bank out of turn 4 and ripping through the lead rider. I went as hard as I dared, 3 odd km in the legs and 250m to go, I knew I had to actually pace the effort. Out of the last bend my hips started to wobble, the line was coming, but so was a rider around my outside. The guy who won (Greg Hogan) was the same as last week, the same guy who'd been on the front when I'd kicked from above. I'm disappointed I didn't put him away for good with my move, though I imagine my square pedalling only fuelled his legs in the run to the line.

The second race was a win and out, I missed the first move by Dave Kelly when I hesitated assuming a Nemesis kitted rider would cover the wheel. From there on it was ugly, though I made the wheel I didn't have legs to come around for first. Everyone else swung up the track after this first sprint, so I kept the pace on to see if I could force a solo gap. It was not to be, I had two riders with me and my efforts stung my legs enough to put me out of the sprint for 2nd place. So it was down to the final sprint, 3rd place, me vs Mitch Gourley. The pace slowed and my confidence grew. A good, old fashioned match sprint vs a 60kg bloke is always going to end in my favour. Mitch, I'm (now) sorry for throwing a few baby hooks your way, (at the time) you needed to know the track was mine. :D

A combined A and B grade field for the final race of the night, Points (15km), Greg, Mitch and I were all sporting pursuiters coughs before the race even started. Sitting on Greg's wheel I hoped for a nice easy race. Denied! When Greg hit the front, he hit the gas. We were still 6 laps shy of the first sprint, but the field splintered, us clear off the front, a group of 5 chasing and some others back behind that. We lapped on and off for a few before Greg's legs told him to stop which effectively sealed my decision as well. From there it was a touch like last week. Dave Kelly took a lap, I rolled through with others trying to minimise the damage. Then Dave reached us and drove the pace again, eventually there was a surge too far and I dropped off the lead "bunch" (now down to 2 riders plus the lap up Dave), and settled in to roll turns in a slightly slower group. So then, how did I score my 2nd 2nd? The other two riders with Dave crashed out, leaving me the 2nd highest points getter. 8 points vs Dave's 65. :P

PMPW: 95kg


I have no excuse that justifies sitting on my toochus all day.

I miss my road bike. :(

PMPW: 95kg

Sunday, 10 June 2012


ABOC Sprint @ DISC:
2 x 1/4 lap Power jumps @ 102" (15km/h)
1 x 1/2 lap Power jump @ 102" (15km/h, seated)
3 x 1/2 lap Power jumps @ 94" (30km/h, seated)
1 x flying 100 (98")
2 x 1 1/2 lap Match sprints @ 82"

Paired with Jack again for all bar the match sprints. I'm not displeased with this idea, I've ridden more bikes, he's ridden more sprint. I think over the next few sessions I'll ask him to help practice contact during sprints, I found myself a little skittish when he feints.

CE: 1

PMPW: 94kg

Saturday, 9 June 2012


The sky was not looking pretty, and once we'd finished riding the damp trails, neither were Jimmy or I.

Fresh kit was splattered with mud... yes mud, I dont care how many 'horse apples' there were, only mud hit me, my face and my oft open (panting) mouth.

The loop wasn't too long, an hour or two, just long enough to highlight how far backwards my skills had gone. *hint* It's a fair way.

This may come as a shock to many, but mountain biking is a ton of fun. Though I reserve the right to change my opinion once it comes time to clean my bike.

D: 25.3km
A: 648m

PMPW: 94kg

Friday, 8 June 2012


No pedals were turned in anger or even... wait what's the opposite of anger here? Peace?

CE: 1

PMPW: 93kg

Thursday, 7 June 2012



D: 10.1km
A: 224m

Northcote Thursday:
If I had written about each of tonight's race after they occurred, rather than now as a whole, this might be a different tone... perhaps not, but probably.

The simple story is I didn't have the legs tonight. They were still sore and got found out in the scrath and points races. To top off pulling out of those races mid way through I finished off with a flat in the motor pace.

Like my tubular tyre, I'm deflated.

PMPW: 93kg

Wednesday, 6 June 2012


I added a little bit of Yarra Trails to my commute home. It was my first time with the CX bike on dirt and there is equal amounts of changes to the bike and Neil required. The hoods need to be rolled up slightly, and the tyres let down a little. Me on the other hand needs to lose the death grip (again), learn to look through corners (again) and work out how to bunny hop (again).

I'm afraid this CX thing will be a gateway drug back to my mountain bikes and I'll have to start buying 6 drive trains a year again. DAMN YOU ROSS!

D: 31.8km
A: 268m

PMPW: 93kg

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


Brunswick Tuesday Track:
Track is back with a brand new mission. Yep, rather than stew in the funk created by a lack of a road bike, I've decided to rap out with my track out. Ok fine, that little music thing didnt really work. Whatever, your face is a little music thing!

Neil: Are entries for seniors open yet?
Volunteer: Yep
Neil: My name is Neil. A grade please.

And just like that I was entered into my first Tuesday night track race since the 19th of April last year... before that it was October 2009.

First up was a scratch race. I rolled turns until around 6 laps to go when Dave Kelly decided to just motor pace the entire bunch. Sweet! I was 3rd wheel and feeling just dandy. 2 to go and a couple came up the outside. Fuck, I was boxed or forced to go 4 wide. Greg Hogan (one of those 3 wide at the front finally kicked clear, opening space for me to come through everyone else. I gave chase, taking a wheel or two's length out of him, but not enough to overhaul the bike length he had on the line. Not a bad result but given how peppy my legs felt with 2 laps to go, I felt this one was mine to win.

Next was an elimination, I wasn't terribly interested in it, instead wanting to keep some legs in the bag for a final motor pace. I used the first 3 cuts to play with track bunch riding skills. Making position for myself (pushing up on a rider), watching and counting those around me. Sadly on the 3rd cut I was edged by two guys going the loooong way around.

"Final race is a points race."

FUUUUCK! The surging attack and counter attack nature of points races are brutal. It's no secret that I do not love them, but given I'd opted out of any serious racing in the elimination I was facing the prospect of a fairly unproductive night of riding.

I didn't have a specific plan for the race. Take a few points here and there, hurt a bit, and roll through to the line. We had 40 laps, and sprints every 10. I took 4th in the first sprint, then kicked for the second, losing out (due to assuming I had it in the bag) on a throw to Dave Kelly. He kept the pace on after and behind me I heard Skinny yell "YEP! GO!", I trusted this meant we had a gap and chased for a lap to get us on to Dave's wheel. From there my world turned inside out. Either I was miss timing my roll up the bank after a turn, or Dave was ripping through for his, because I had to close a gap to Skinny's wheel every fucking time. It hurt. It hurt a lot. There was a sprint that almost tore me apart, I faced a few wheel gap and a strong desire to call the race there. Just as I prepared to ease off the pedals a simple thought came through my brain. I was at worst, in for 3rd place, I had no place pulling out of a race while on the podium* so I gritted my teeth, put on my extra poo face and closed the gap. Some time after Dave rode off, leaving Skinny and I to swap off turns with help from the occasional lapped rider. Skinny kicked for the final sprint, putting a gap into me, but finally I knew what was left in my legs and drilled myself to close, all the break and pass sprint drills coming flooding back to give confidence that surpassed the pain. Whipping through the final bend I was around the outside, wheel just in front. The extra wheel length on the line secured me enough points for 2nd overall and a pursuiter's cough for the rest of the night.



D: 9.7km
A: 167m

PMPW: 94kg

* yeah, there's not actually a podium

Monday, 4 June 2012


This will be the third year that CX racing has happened in Australia, and thanks to my mate Ross of iRide Bikes, I will finally be taking part resplendent in an brand new skinsuit. Yes, I am almost as excited about expanding my skinsuit collection as I am about expanding my bike collection.

So why is this information pertinent? Well today I took possession of spanking new Jamis Supernova... just in time to ride it home in some of the shittiest weather of the year. I'm so sorry brand new bike... but there's worse to come in a month or two. :D

D: 6.9km
A: 138m

PMPW: 93kg

Sunday, 3 June 2012


ABOC Sprint @ DISC:
1 x 75m Power jump @ 82"
2 x 75m Power jump (Pairs from 15km/h) @ 98"
1 x 125m Power jump (Pairs from 15km/h) @ 98"
3 x 75m Power jump (Pairs from 30km/h) @ 98"
1 x 500m Motorpaced entry/Windout, rider last 100m @ 82"

With the roadie not an option, I considered getting out my hardtail for a bit of Yarra trails action (action action), but my bed was too warm, and had planned to (also) do the first ABOC Sprint session of the season at the freshly reopened DISC.

I regret the soft choice of not riding the MTB, but I know why I took it. I was a little nervous about sprint/power work given that my training has featured exactly sweet fuck all of it in recent months.

My pairs work was all with WAIS rider Jack Ward. I believe Carl said it best. "He's a strong fucker."

Basically the rider on the bottom of the track won each time, the extra height gained going around the outside was just too much to overcome.

PMPW: 93kg

Saturday, 2 June 2012


Prahran - Mt Pleasant - Smiths Gully - Hurstbridge:
Benchmark day makes me nervous, so nervous that on my cross town ride I had to stop for a nervous poo at a truck stop. I used the opportunity to tighten a creaky chainring bolt that'd been bugging me, then on to meet Jim, BJ, Justin, Christian and Craig at the Rosanna Safeway.

In a repeat of Thursday it was cold, my GPS had us dipping below zero a few times, but despite that I never felt too bad, or as is more common, I never felt nothing (numb toes/ears/fingers).

The turn into Antoinette Boulevard came quicker than I'd hoped, right off of Main rd, and straight into a series of small kickers. I tried to hold a steady pace, not too dig too deep too early, to keep something in the legs for when everything was screaming. Holding pace along Lavender Park rd Jim was with me, beside me, behind me, around me... somewhere. His presence more of a feeling and a sound than a visual body. His breathing was hard, but then so was mine, a left turn into Hillcrest and the road tips up slightly. I stood up to get some extra power down and try and keep my pace going, as the blood rushing through my ears became the norm I realised Jim was no longer with me.

Alone in my box, I tried to ride a sensible TT, steady exertion that built to a crescendo, but at times (the false flats) I wished for another rider to test if I really was putting in everything. Relying on strava to track the time meant I rolled straight over the top and through to Research-Warrandyte Road. I now know I rode it in 17 minutes 23 seconds. 11 seconds faster than last time, 4 faster than the fastest time I've done.

The rest of the ride was still going to be tough, not everyone had decided to play the ITT game, so there was a mix of fresh/used legs and fitnesses to contend with.


We twisted and turned through the punchy back roads of Warrandyte, Kangaroo Ground and Watsons Creek, the pattern becoming clearer on each hill. Craig would hit it hard, out of the saddle stomping away. Jim would follow, perhaps seated, I'd look at them a few bike lengths ahead and conduct a mental review of my motivation before finally deciding to give chase. I stayed seated as much as possible, working to find the place that's worked well for me recently. Hands on the tops of my bars, thumb hooked over the top with the fingers relaxed, arms relaxed, shoulders relaxed and legs trying to pull clean circles. Slowly the two smaller figures would come back towards me, I'd match their pace for a moment, then the next time the road got steeper I'm put a bit more power through the pedals and start to pull away.

So with this in mind, the fact that I was feeling confident about my ability to climb against riders I know to climb well, I was sad when I stopped to investigate an odd noise from my bike, and found my frame had finally decided to break.

So I'm in a weird mental space. I feel great about my ability to ride a road bike... but I wont have one for a little bit. 

Strava link.

D: 84.5km
A: 1,528m

PMPW: 94kg

Friday, 1 June 2012


Just a regular old Friday, easy on the legs, heavy on the stomach.

D: 14.8km
A: 210m

CE: 1

PMPW: 92kg