Sunday, 17 November 2013


SKCC Crits:
I rolled in early to marshal e grade. I was kitted with big wheels and white socks, stuff that speaks of intention, and yet I was rolled convincingly by half a dozen blokes in the sprint.

Not disheartened I lined up straight after for d grade. I was feeling good, able to follow attacks when they went, but worried I was going to be DQ'd for jumping on b grade every time they went past I pulled the pin before the sprint and hit up Mick for a ristretto.

A grade was the final chance I had to get myself an envelope. There were 3 sprints on offer, but I wanted to feature at the end, so let others dampen their legs going for the early cash. Lui and Jake were up front working the breaks, which left me able to sit in and wait for a possible sprint finish.

Pre race we talked about setting up a train for the last half lap to go toe to toe with O2, but for the 2nd week in a row 3 laps was called at 55 minutes with no 5+3 forewarning. I made the decision to freelance the sprint and found myself in a great spot coming round for the last lap. I was on Andy Naylor and he was behind Duncan Smith. I though it odd, Andy usually leads out Dunc, but whatever, I was in about 6th wheel coming round the back, no one was coming up the outside, I was thinking about how to hit the last corner. Then, as we started into the long bend, Andy eased off Dunc's wheel. The gap was easy enough to close, but I still called him a jerk as I went past. Post race he claimed it wasn't the move of a sweeper, but I'll make sure he pays for it none the less.

Anyway, I hit the sprint with the best legs and best position I've had in a couple of years. Shannon punched it just before the corner with someone on his wheel. I took a widish line and went up the right, passing a couple of riders, fighting to hold onto 4th, fighting to hold off a rider edging up on my right. I threw for the line, but knew he'd got it, and as blood returned to my brain I realised it was Richie, my team mate.

Sadly, I assume due to the primes, they only paid to 3rd. I'm still happy about 5th though, my actual kick was a measly 1,390W. The power for the 10 seconds from the corner to the line wasn't too bad (1,261W) but I'd like to hit it harder for those first 2 or 3 pedal strokes from the corner, to close some gaps in front or open some behind.

Strava link.

D: 111.4km
A: 115m

Bing wanted some dirt, and in my tired state post racing I was unable to come up with a reason not to join him. 3 hours, where I was shown how poor my line choice and feel for my tyres has become. Rode so much better when I followed him, though some modifications to allow for my 26" hardtail vs his 29" duallie were made.

Bing's mate Andy snapped a bolt in his seatpost at the point furthest from the cars as possible. We laughed, then we searched our bikes for a sacrificial m4 bolt to fix it, before finally turning for home. After some initial joking it was decided that Bing and I would ride standing to keep things fair. By the time we climbed back up to the car I had a visceral need to use my saddle for it's intended purpose. I'd even avoided too much hopping as I feared the slight touch of the seat before the launch might be too much temptation to resist.

Andy safely back at his Subaru, Bing and I refilled bottles and went out for a few extra trails in the late afternoon light. The snap had certainly been beaten out of my legs, but outrageously loose cornering by kept us both smiling and laughing.

Strava link.

D: 40.7km
A: 710m

PMPW: 94kg

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