I wasn't feeling it today, despite it being the best race conditions of the year. Somehow Sundays G1 ride was still lingering in me old pins. Probably all that rain, wind and relentless climbing....even though there wasn't a hill in sight? One of those club runs that amass more altitude than those where you go looking for pointy roads.
In warm up I felt dreadful, and despite the warm weather I had to go back to the car and dig out my cyclo cross winter oil, and try to burn my legs into submission.
My mind was still in 'oh bugger it' mode by the time we were called up to the starting grid.
Then we had a small presentation for the Divisional Champs...I think as I couldn't hear over all the gassing. Dave Brown was called up to get his gong.
[ Just want to say/mention/point out something. How come when there's a BC race even if it's a 30 minute Cat 4 effort. The next day, nay the same night there are about a million images of that race posted up, countless videos and results down to the very last man. Yet when it's us lot, there's nothing. Not even on a hot summers day and your men are picking up metal ware]
Anyway well done Dave, and thanks for your efforts in the LBRCC's club colours.
Gold, Silver and Bronze stashed away and we're sent off. As usual it feels okay, I settle into a nice spot determined to be as selfish as possible to save my weary legs. And I keep an eye on the man in front whoever he is at the time, or I should say any gaps between him and the front of the race. If he slows I pass and grab a better wheel, being careful not to 'accidentally' go to the front. I think I see a Velo Equipe rider go taking a Corley man with him. There's no way I can do anything, and the bunch seems to feel the same. So it seems we're all racing for third place.
So far so good. However next it's the gates onto the extended circuit. Going out of the gates the first time my position isn't too good, but either I have found my legs or the group slowed up either way I'm back in.
From my position it looks like no one can get away, and I'm determined not to go out of the back. Attention to position saves my legs and I'm three quarters through. Then there's a short lull, I mean very short, just enough seconds to draw breath and have a quick think. Then we're off again, willing to let anyone take the front and me to the bell I stay put.
The bell goes, three laps. Now the tricky bit. Go to early and everyone will thank you. Go to late and you'll be last man through the series of bends that lead to the flag. Compromise. That's what I'll do, some cheeky movement to get 'near' the front is all that's required, success. I have contact with the wheel in front on the way to the line.
Now it's time for a schoolboy error. In full flight for the line I focus on passing the guy that's ahead of me. Which I do, only to be passed by about five riders left and right of me. Focus on the line.....FOCUS ON THE LINE you fool.
Still happy with that and on a night I felt so tired, I can only assume it was the tiredness that made me a bit more canny than usual.
No more Bowl races for a few weeks due to concerts, so no more news from the man at the back putting the 'M' into mediocrity.