Not quite at peak fitness

PDCC D grade race Dog Hill
23 June 2013

Rid­ing down to the race, I real­ised the main straight would be into head­wind, and decided on my tac­tics for the day. Approach­ing the bell, attack and ride hard into the head­wind. I knew from last week, an organ­ised chase was unlikely, rely­ing on indi­vidual riders to try and chase me down. A big plus for me was I had finally recovered from the cold that has ruined my sea­son so far, so hope­fully I was strong enough to stay away, even though I had not trained for 6 weeks.

Five riders from the Uni­corn Brewery/Hall Cyc­ling Team (UBHCT) made this the biggest field for the sea­son, 19 in all. From the start, it was obvi­ous the UBHCT riders was rid­ing as a team, and their tac­tics was to ride as hard as pos­sible on the first lap. I was sit­ting towards the back of the field, sur­prised that riders where not being put into dif­fi­culty. As hit the short rise about 1500m from the fin­ish, the strongest UBHCT rider with Don tucked on their wheel had a small break. I was not going to let those two get away. I bridged, they slowed, I went to the front and drove. I could here voices behind me, that were not Don or the UBHCT rider yelling we had a break. I drove on for a little longer, then swung off to see half a dozen riders behind, with the rest of the bunch scram­bling to get across. The momentum dis­ap­peared from the front and the group was back together.

The next three laps was a little slower pace, a few riders attacked, if it was a UBHCT rider, another rider brought them back. If it was another rider of the front a UBHCT rider brought them back. But nobody was get­ting away. On the third lap a few riders got off the front down the back straight. I got to the front and drove hard for a couple of minutes, nobody was will­ing or cap­able of com­ing through and the group was back together. One of the UBHCT riders said ‟Nobody is going to get away today” and I replied ‟I can but try”.

On the 4th lap, the short rise before the fin­ish, two UBHCT riders went off the front, I fol­lowed, the pace was not excess­ive so I attacked and went hard to get gap. I failed and my race was over, I rolled to the back. On the final lap I was just hanging on, when the strongest UBHCT rider went off the front again. I bridged and when the pulled off, I kept tempo for 30 seconds before slid­ing down the pack and off the back.

The next half a lap, I was a max­imum of 50m off the back of the bunch, It kept look­ing like I was going to claw my way back on, then they picked up the pace for the fin­ish and I crossed the line 15th some 45 seconds down on the win­ner. From what I heard the UBHCT riders sprin­ted for the painted line on the road which was the old fin­ish, not the real fin­ish 200m down the road.

It was a good race, I throughly enjoyed it, even though my fit­ness and tac­tics was not up to it. It looks like I am over the cold and back in train­ing. So my form should improved dra­mat­ic­ally over the next few weeks.I am just going to need new tac­tics as it looks like the UBHCT riders will be join­ing us on a reg­u­lar basis, so my chances of get­ting off the front are going to be limited.

One Response to “Not quite at peak fitness”

  1. Brett Says:

    Good stuff Nick (almost) makes me want to come back and race to give these UBHCT fel­las some­thing to think about :)