I was feeling much better than last week, even managed a couple of training rides/commutes during the week. Though try as I might I could not get my heart rate anywhere near what it got to last Saturday.
I was confident given my performance last week and my previous race on this course. I set off with new found confidence at the front of the pack. The first time up the short climb on Coyle Road, a rider set a fast pace. I did not see a need to ride so hard this early in the race and slide back to my usual position as ticket collector.
Next time up Casuarina Road I smelt smoke, normally I would reach for my asthma inhaler. I didn’t as the rider picked up the pace for small lump and I survived last smoke on the course last week without my inhaler. The up Coyle Road, I got gapped on the climb. No problems I will get back on the descent. Except I could not push hard enough, once we hit the flat I used my inhaler and resumed the pursuit.
By the time I crossed the finish line some 5 kilometres later, I had lost all of seven seconds, the bunch was that close, I was chasing hard and the bunch was on the fastest lap of their race. Turned onto Casuarina Road and into the headwind, I kept pursuing at pace for a kilometre and that was it I popped.
The options was to do three more laps alone or pull out, save myself for racing tomorrow and take photos of the other riders, I dropped out.
A couple of days alter I realised how congested my lungs were and my performance was well below normal.