Thursday, 3 January 2013


Bay Crits - Williamstown:
The graze on my elbow hurt, and the bruise buried somewhere deep in my left glute had me worried about being able to unleash a full powered sprint, but I was hopeful for the day. Optimistic even. The course around the streets of Williamstown had bugger all hill and only one hard acceleration (out of turn 1, an evil man cover strewn round about). In Skinny's words "this is our best chance and the best course". After the tight left hander at the roundabout there was a tightish left onto the back straight, a more open left to head back down a slight slope then a super open and fast left into the start/finish straight. Not quite St Kilda or Glenvale, but the best shot for a sprinter to get a kick.

My job for the day was to get my Skinny up for the sprint. I sat towards the back of the bunch, the tight first corner meant it wasn't an ideal position, but I really didn't like the idea of fighting to stay at the front. As the race went on, a single guy was off the front, putting time into the bunch that was slowly whittled down in size by counter attacks and bridging attempts. The deeper into the race we got the happier I was until we reached a point where I felt at home. There were mere minutes left, guys around me were tiring and I felt good. I had a job and now I had the confidence that I could carry it out

My confidence took a small hit when when I saw the 2 laps to go sign, I hadn't seen or heard 3 to go, and I thought they were going to be calling from 5 out. Without the ability to change the situation I got on with playing the hand I had in front of me. We had roughly 25 riders of the starting 50 left, one of whom was off the front with the win in the bag. I was ok with racing for places, there were track world champions in the bunch, and getting a mate up for cash was juuuuust fine.

It took me a lap to get up to Skinny, so when I rolled up the left of the home straight, yelling his name in a way he knows means "Get. The. Fuck. On. My. Wheel!", we had one lap and a few meters to the line and around a dozen dudes in front of us.

I went on the outside on the back straight only to have the line shut down. That left the short downhill section and the final straight. Riders in front were looking ragged and I was possessed with two days of disappointment, now was my time, now was the moment when I'd get my mate into a solid top 10 position and redeem the faith of the team in me. I chose to make a move I'd used a bunch of times during the race to make up some easy places. Back off the guys in front early as we drew up to the final fast left hander, then to carry extra speed and hold a slightly tighter line, meaning on the exit I'd be able to launch Skinny with more speed than everyone into the final 150m dash to the line.

It's here that the story goes off plan and details get sketchy. I assume that the speed was too much, or that I hadn't done enough turning before we got over the centre line and onto the slightly off camber right hand side of the road. It's possible someone in front started their sprint early and made me veer. Whatever the reason I found myself sliding on my left side along the hot mix of Williamstown's beach side boulevard. Behind me I knew full well there was another 10ish blokes who were coming hot through the corner, and that they now had no where else to go but over/into me.

Jono Lovelock crashed over me and took off a bunch of bark, Skinny got high sided or launched over his bars and landed ribs first on someone else's bike. There were other injuries but I didn't see them. Jono got cleaned up on site, Skinny spent the night in hospital to ensure his lungs didn't collapse, and me... well I'll let some photos tell that story.

This is my bare arse. While interesting as the worst injuries, you also can't unsee the pasty hairy skin once seen.

Strava link.

D: 54.6km
A: 142m

PMPW: 93kg


Publius Naso said...

Oh man, that's not going to be fun for a little while. Hope the worst of it has worn off by now and you're able to pass as human soon!

neil said...

cheers john, but I don't think I will ever pass for a human.


Ah man. That's some quality road rash.

I came off scot free compared to that.

How are the wounds fairing a few days down the track?



neil said...

They feel alright, they're just really awkward to keep dressings on.

I'm going to have some massive knots in my hip though. I'm not looking forward to Andy Naylor putting his elbow into that one. :|