Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tour of the Scenic Rim, raced!

Should I leave it like that?

No! Firstly, I have been getting an overwhelming amount of hits on AMR Cycling, thank you. Secondly, because it was a perfect weekend of racing and spending time with friends and I need to keep a good record of it! I just wish it was a bit more than a weekend, perhaps a whole week, perhaps even seven races in the Scenic Rim.

Sandra and I managed to get away with little delay (my standards!) on Friday and arrived at Lake Moogerah, the camping ground, with plenty of time to appreciate the beauty of the new place. We had enough time to set up camp, if we can call it camping, prepare the bikes, cook dinner and relax in our rental motorhome. Yes, dinner was some sort of pasta dish!

Lake Moogerah is about seven kilometers from Mt Alford, location of the first two races. The ride on Lake Moogerah Road was fast and a good warm up for the races. However riding back after each stage was a little challenging with the steep little climb in the middle.

The Racing

Stage One was the 15 km time trial. The course was really well chosen by the organisers (Goldstars Cycling Club) and set in a very beautiful area. It wasn't the most demanding course and conditions were perfect.

My run was disapointing. I did feel good for the first half, where I could probably have gone a bit harder. I managed to catch one rider, who started 30 sec before, but felt shattered when caught by another rider, who started one minute after me and kept riding away...

I placed 19th, with a time of 22 min and 18 sec.

After a small meal, I headed back to Mt Alford for the first road race. Sandra's race was a little later. My group had to do three laps of the lumpy 20 kilometers course. This is a course where I have struggled in the past but this time I was prepared to give my best shot and do my best to help our team's best GC rider.

The climbs on this course were too short for me, they suited the more powerful riders who, in the first two laps got over them much quicker than me. However, I managed to be at the front at the critical times and avoided getting dropped on the descents.

On the third lap, most riders seemed tired and slower getting over the "lumps", my light weight might have given me a bit of an advantage then. I felt good and was ready to try a move in the final 1500 meters (a small incline into town), hoping that the chasers would drag my team mates to the line.

It didn't happen that way as the bunch became very compact with two and a half kilometers left, and there were no gaps to get through. Our man finished fourth and I was a couple of seconds behind, 13th on the line.

On Sunday, we drove the motorhome to Roadvale, start and finish of my 90 km race. On the way there, we had a chance to see the climbs of the final kilometers of the 30 km circuit. These ones were longer and I imagined myself gaining a bit of time on most riders if I made a move with four or five kilometers to the line.

My mind was set! Still, I put myself at the front (with another four or five riders) for a good part of the race, just trying to keep the pace high and stopping anyone trying to get away. I did feel a bit tired when we crossed the line for the second time and had to start conserving for the end of the race.

My plan seemed to be going well and I felt good with 20 km to go. Unfortunately, my rear derailleur cable broke and I could no longer use all the gears, finishing the race with two choices, 53-12 or 39-12, which wasn't the best for hanging with the bunch when things pointed skyward. They were barely good enough to get me to the line.

Nineteenth on GC, or should I say eighteenth?

That is racing... And we love it!

Week Twenty-nine: Race
Time: 11 h 25 min
Dist.: 301.5 km


Will said...

Sorry about the broken cable ... sounds like some very fun cycling (racing) though.

AMR said...

Thanks Will,
It was the first one ever... and the slowest finish ever.

Great racing indeed!

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