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Race Report - Bal Tab RR.

JesseDJesseD Posts: 1,961
edited June 2016 in Amateur race
I was meant to be riding the Bernard Hinault in France on Saturday but as my trip got cancelled on Friday morning I decided to enter a local road race on Sunday, the race was the same one I got cramp in 6 weeks ago, however this time I didn’t enter the 9 lap race as it was made up of all Division 1 guys, so instead I entered the 7 lap race which had some Division 1 guys, mainly Division 2 riders (my division) and some Division 3 riders too.

The course is pretty undulating with no real climbs to speak of, just gentle rolling roads. Each lap is 5.2 miles long and the start/finish is a long straight with a headwind, about 200 yards after the line you take sharp left and the road rises enough to wipe out any speed you carry into the corner, the roads are then undulating all the way to the final left turn where the road then rises slightly and then you go into a small downhill section into a left then right bend which can be taken at full tilt and back into the start/finish straight, perfect for me as someone who can’t climb.

7.15am and we are off, the bunch all stays together for 2-3 miles but in my opinion it was all a bit slow, so after a sharp left turn onto the main road I attack, not hard but a sprint from the corner and then settle into around a quick pace to see if anyone comes with me, I got closed down after around half a mile and settled back into the bunch, we all stay together for the first lap, then at the beginning of lap 2 one of my club mates attacks, I am in second wheel and just slow the pace down slightly, a couple more jump and join him until we have 2 riders from my club in a break of 5, I then just cover the attacks in case anyone else goes across, the other clubs get organised and bring them back.

At the beginning of Lap 3 I decide to have another go at exactly the same time as another member of my club and we quickly get 100m up the road, only to be joined by a CASP rider and a Big Maggys rider, we quickly form a good working group and start to stretch out the lead, at this point I expected to be brought back but we managed to build our lead over the next 2 and a half laps to 2 minutes, I was told later that the rest of the bunch just sort of gave up and didn’t get organised.

At points during the break I was on my limit and at several points I thought I was going to get dropped but managed to hold in and miss some turns and recover, my club mate who had just moved to my division was spent but to be fair to him he rode like a trooper and hung in there.

At the start of Lap 7 the big Maggys rider attacked but he didn’t get far, he was knackered as we all were, so we left him dangling 50 yards in front of us in the wind, as we started to catch him with about 4 miles to go the CASP rider attacked and I went with him, my club mate sat up and latched onto the wheel of the Big Maggys rider and off the 2 of us went, the CASP rider was a Division 1 rider and a lot stronger than me so I thought the only way to beat him was to sit in as much as possible and only take turns every now and again.

The tactic kind of worked and I managed to force him to the front just as we got to the final left turn before the start/finish, he wants having any of it and slowed down as did I, I thought we were going to track stand at one point but with the 2 dropped guys catching he decided to lead out and picked up the pace round the bends to the finish straight where he made the mistake of moving to the right and looking behind in the same direction as I moved left and opened up my sprint, I drew level for about 20 yards and with 150 to go, fully kicked and gained a gap of about 5-10 yards to cross the line in first place. The CASP rider was second with the Big Maggys rider taking 3rd in the sprint from my club mate, in fact when the bunch arrived Velo Sport Jersey (my club) took 3 of the first 5 spots, so a successful day out for us.

I am really happy with the improvements in fitness I have made since the last race, I am also really happy to have actually raced and been in the thick of things and not just sat in the bunch and waited for the sprint!
Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated!
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