Wednesday, 2 January 2013


Bay Crits - Portarlington:
The crits in Portarlington started a few hours earlier than yesterday, but without the bottle of wine and fireworks it was easy to get up with enough time to ride the rollers before heading back down the Princess Hwy.

The course was fairly open, it did however have a kicker of a hill straight after a nasty 270° off camber corner, then a softish hill on a long straight up the back. Skinny had never lasted more than 17 minutes on this course, so that was my rough goal for the day. After things settled in the first few laps I was pretty happy that the famous kicker felt ok... to me. It wasn't all roses though, in fact I don't think I saw a single flower, anyway the slight uphill of the back straight was uncomfortable, especially when the pace was left of over the kicker.

Around 8-10 minutes in, I was taking a wide entry and late apex to the 270° before the kicker, inside me a guy was taking an inferior tight line, another poor sucker who I'd pass on the exit... another poor sucker who... oh shit why is he on the ground?! Shit! there's nowhere for me to go!

After straightening my shifter and reclaiming my lost bottle I made my way to the corner at the top of the kicker with a few others and waited patiently with a marshal for the bunch to come back around. I rejoined with a couple of moderate pedal strokes, and found myself up the front and feeling fresh just as a few dudes rolled clear. I followed them, and as we got a gap established I was to hear the whistle for an intermediate sprint. At the time I was excited at the idea I might feature, but in hindsight it was the moment the race went from good to bad. A single guy attacked up the back. I half responded, finding myself suddenly deep in the box, which is where I stayed until I decided to stop trying to even hold my break mates and rejoin the bunch.

After a little while there, I found I was struggling to hold it (the bunch) as well. Over the rise of the back straight I had developed a wheeze to my panicked breath that no amount purposeful breathing could control. Eventually, despite the cheers the Artisan boys camped out on the kicker, there came a time when I just had no more to give.

Sadly my power meter magnet had gone AWOL, but the data still shows bigger all of the 28ish minutes of racing was spent under threshold.

So two DNFs in two days, I'm not overly chuffed... but I did survive longer in this race than I'd expected. Like the beverages I'd like to be drinking, my emotions are shaken, not stirred.

Strava link.

D: 20.0km
A: 344m

PMPW: 92kg

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