I went into the race with a simple plan, sit in the pack, do the minimum amount of work and wait for the last 400m or so.
It went to plan, well for the 1st two laps. On the 1st climb of the 3rd lap. “Ting, Ting, Ting” it sounded like I had broken a spoke. I stopped to see the damage. It was not a broken spoke, but my rear wheel speed sensor for my Garmin was loose and fallen into the wheel. Took me a couple minutes to find and fix the problem, but my race was run. I could not chase back two (actually it was closer to 3) minutes. So I settled in for a lonely ride. As I approach the finish line the next time for the bell lap, I could see a couple of stragglers, who I later found out was Dave & Amy, a couple of hundred metres ahead, so I had a target for my last lap.
I got lapped by A Grade on the first climb of my final lap, it was tempting to tuck in behind and get some assistance, but I did not. Luckily for me, as they where follow by the Commissaire. It did not really matter, I was rapidly catching the two riders ahead, I was probably only 60m behind, when I crested the 2nd climbed and was passed by another rider. At first I thought it was a B grade rider off the front of their group. It quickly became apparent this was not a B grader off the front, but a C grader who had mechanical and was riding almost at the same pace as me. As we were from different grades we could not ride together and swap turns. So I sat about 10m off and used him as a visual pacemaker.
Which worked well, until the C grader passed the two stragglers, they pick up their pace and tucked in behind. It did not really matter as I was less than 15m behind and tagged onto the end of the group. If it was only Dave & Amy, I probably would attacked on the final climb and try to solo the last 2km to the finish, as Dave is stronger sprinter than me. Instead I stayed tucked in behind the pacemaker, waited to about 400m and launched an attack, only to have Dave go past me with about 50m to go.