Saturday, 20 July 2013


St Kilda East - Arthurs Seat - Arthurs Seat - St Kilda East:
DK and I met up for a quick pre-Hell Ride coffee, then rolled out with the bunch. I was fairly relaxed about it all, we planned to continue south at Mt Eliza when the bunch turned, so I felt no obligation to pull turns. I didn't turn fully off though, sitting at the back would be stupid given how many lights there are on the route, but sadly 20th wheel was still not enough. At Carrum, a set of lights cut us mid pack and opened a gap. the next two and half km were flat stick, chopping off hard turns with Wilko and a guy in Omara kit. Slowly, slowly the gap was closing, I was running a good 5-7 beats over threshold, but the legs were still working, so I didn't question, I just buried myself. Then we got another set of lights and I switched off. The bunch was gone, and DK with it.

When we finally got to the Peninsula School, DK was waiting with Bensley and a few Artisan boys, a grin splitting his face. Nick soon pulled off to wait for Mitch Anderson, and the rest of us continued on to Dromana where turn inland for 2 ascents of the West face of Arthurs Seat.

The first ascent was a 3 way affair for the minor placings. DK had us all licked, but Lach, Sam and I were holding similar pace. The slight variance of grade was enough to shoot each of us forward and backward. I tried to keep my head up and legs turning. To concentrate on the road in front and not the rider... but when Lach went past before Chapman's corner, I lost a bit of the will to hurt, and had to fight a few mental daemons. To add insult to injury, Sam, who I thought I'd dispatched, rolled me on the line. JERK!

The second time up was a little less intense, but there's not really anywhere to hide on a 9% climb. Instead of being 5 beats over threshold, it was 3 or 4 beats under and with it, the ability to occasionally speak words that others could understand.

We rolled home two up, impressed that despite the ugly forecast that we'd managed to miss all the rain. Then we hit Blackrock and the heavens opened. You know what though? Given the chance, I'd do it all over again exactly the same.

Strava link.

D: 169.3km
A: 1,738m

PMPW: 98kg

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