Wrong grade, right race, still lacking the confidence

WCMCC Doug Willing Handicap
25 August 2013

Turned up late, registered, got given a number and found myself in D grade. Which was going to be an interesting race. As the last time I raced WCMCC D grade I felt I could of ridden away from the bunch at anytime.

So shortly after the start, I went to the front and did a strong turn for a couple of ks, when I swung off another rider took over at the same pace for about a k, then another and then it was my turn again. The first lap was three riders at C grade scratch pace, the next lap instead of three on the front, five where working hard and the remaining two were rolling through. We were keeping impressive pace, we were about 30 seconds slower on the 2nd lap, however, if we could of managed that pace for the remaining four laps we would of won by over a minute.

I was sitting at the back, when A grade who started 3 minutes and a lap behind us, proceeded to unlap themselves. Three riders on the front grabbed onto A grade’s tail, including the two strong riders from the first lap. Two riders got about 200m advantage, the strongest rider disappeared from sight with A. So I spent the next lap attempting to chase down the two riders infront. The first half was solo, closed about half the distance, then started slipping back, got joined by another D grader and tried again and popped. So I kicked the clutch in, slowed and attempted to recover before C grade came past.

Took a lap, and then I was back in the bunch with C, the pace was no faster that the D grade’s first lap. I was happy pulling short turns as the bunch, we passed both E grade groups, then picked up the group of 3 C graders, then the lone leader with a lap to go.

Last lap, at the start of the lap for some reason all of D grade ended up on the front of the bunch and I pulled a long turn, before rolling to the back, to recover and wait for the end. The pace picked up a little before the final corner, I was sitting on the back as we went round the final corner, started riding hard, started getting cramp in my calf, so I eased back and finish at the back of the pack.

Thinking about it now, it was lack of confidence in my skills, I should of gone to the front for the corner and drove hard from there and through my cramp. I probably would not of won, but would a much better result.

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