Wednesday, 21 October 2015



D: 25.6km
A: 128m

St Kilda East - HCC D Grade - HCC A Grade - St Kilda East:
That hurt. It wasn't all pain, in fact D grade and the start of A were nice, guys were obviously going through moments of pain, but I generally felt like I had the option to take positions or close gaps.

Early in A grade, Alby slipped up the road, for laughs I'd attacked across the line to start the race, but there was a semblance of a chase so sat up pretty quick, he (Alby) then counter attacked and got some room. Though my attack was for giggles, I wasn't ready to go chasing, so I slipped into the bunch and wondered if that was the race done.

Thankfully it wasn't, as due in no part to me it came back together before a mcflurry of attacks started. Alby once again got up the road, this time taking Mark O'Brien with him. with 10-15 minutes left to race, it was the sort of thing that'd steam roll itself to a win. A couple of others jumped off the front, but I still wasn't in a position to respond, but I did manage to find myself on Pat Drapac's wheel, and when he went, I went, thus starting the period that lead to the hurt comment.

With a couple of others along we made it to the bridgers, and shortly after that the front few. I figured I could suck air on the back for a bit, but Alby and Marko had different plans. 10 men was obviously too many for them to be comfortable about, and attacks came thick (thin? skinny? it seems a bit rich to call either of them, especially Marko "thick") and fast. I hung on for dear life, closing a gap or three, hoping I'd find some legs at the end.

I didn't find a sprint, but leaving the initiative to others that defined my final place. Things got more and more tactical as the race wore down to the final laps, and on the last lap, it was a slowish pace along the bottom, guys staring back at each other, playing last corner chicken. I was 5-6 riders back, knowing the right thing would be to attack and get to the corner first, but before I got the nerve to do so, Alby and Pat simultaneously launched and dragged a couple of others with them. 5 guys railed the corner in front of me, and 1 guy, who'd obviously had the misfortune of pushing to much wind floundered a little... and that defined where I ended. I kicked out of the corner past him, but the front 5 were well up the road contesting amongst themselves.

6th, from a strong break, with a strong southerly blowing (not good for a big unit), in the first full HCC of the year. It's all right, and hopefully it's just the start of things to come.

Strava link.

D: 65.5km
A: 711m

PMPW: 84kg

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