Thursday, December 15, 2005

Back to where it all began

This is a picture of me on my way to a 4:34.2 and 8th place in the Individual Pursuit at the Manchester World Cup. For the record the race was won in 4:28 (irronically the time I'm aiming to ride this season).
This is a picture of me and Sean 'shrek' Finning during the madison event. Nothing nicer to me than a BT with the Mavic 5 spoke and disc wheels.

So, I was back in the country where my life began. Back for a quick 1 week visit to show the country of my birth that I can ride a bike. Can I prove it???? Or will I crack and will my lack of track racing show?

To be honest….both. I rode a total of 3 races, covering 86.5km being the Individual Pursuit, Scratch Race and Madison. Although I rode my fastest pursuit for the season, I came off the track slightly disappointed. I covered the first 3km in 3:25 and then suffered home over the last km to finish in a 4:34. Not a bad time, 8th fastest for the meet and not far off the pace for a spot in the top 4, but had I continued on schedule I would have come home in a 4:31, which aside from being a PB would have been a massive confidence boost. So why did I slow down???? Was it the jet lag? The slightly bigger gear I experimented with? Or just generally not feeling awesome? I think it was a combination of all 3. Despite the fact I believe I have the art of the pursuit worked out, I rode far to quick a 2nd lap, getting caught up in the excitement of the event and the occasion. Oh well…..truth is it puts a dent in my Commonwealth Games chances but all is not lost and I still have some opportunities to get under the noses of the selectors.

Scratch…in my defence it came very soon after the Individual, which I felt took a bit off my top end, but all in all I felt that I was a little too hesitant. I was too intimidated my competition and it eventually lead to me hesitating too long at the finish and missing my opportunity to run a top 10 performance. I had reasonable legs, but the pace of the race certainly tested me. At the end of the race I decided to wait for big Magnus Bagstead to make his move, but he let me down, didn’t go anywhere and I got stuck behind him in the dash for the finish. Eventually I got out, but it was too late. I ended up in 13th position and Magnus in 19th I think.

Madison. After a days rest I woke on Sunday morning feeling reasonably awake, but with tired feeling legs. I was pleased to find out that despite the way they felt, when we hoped on the bike for the qualifying ride in the madison my legs actually felt good under load. Sean and I rode a reasonable race, with out setting the world on fire. I felt like I rode well and despite missing the crucial move, we still managed to ride a reasonable position for the duration of the race. The madison was a quick one, we averaged 55km/h for 40km. Quickest madison I’ve ever competed in.

So now I’m back home, still getting over the jet lag at the other end. Turns out I lost my ipod on the trip. Left it on one of my flights and by the time I’d realised it was too late. I’m trying now to recover it through a series of emails, but I don’t like my chances. Now I’m in wind down mode looking forward to the 9 day break that I have afforded myself over the Christmas Break. But before I can start that break, I have 1 big weekend of racing left. This weekend we have our state track championships.
Saturday-Individual Pursuit
Sunday-Points Score and Jayco Criterium
So, one big effort to go before I hit the couch and the shops before Christmas. I have my appeal hearing for the $100 fine that I got from the Melbourne Cup on wheels, should be interesting.

And now ill put it on the record, on Saturday I intend on setting a PB in the Individual. This means going faster than 4:32.8. So now its out there, my competitors need to watch out and I have a goal that everyone knows.


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