b2b Blaney to Bathurst 2016

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I stood in the middle of a town I had never been to before, wearing not much and freezing. I’m about to do the Blaney to Bathurst fro the first time, this will be my longest timed event to date.
Back up to 4:30 this morning. It was even colder, 7c according to my phone and I had to get out to the buses at Mt Panorama for the transfer to the start in B We were staying on the eastern side of Bathurst and I had a short ride out to the start from here but I was torn. I had to carry what i wanted to race with and I did’nt want to lug a whole lot of cold weather gear. Opted for the leg and arm warmers but went the summer gloves. Departing it was cold, even colder with the morning air and my fingers were frozen in a matter of minutes. The trip out did take long but the tempreture never got any warmer. This got worse when I stopped to wait for the bus. It ended up being 45-50 minutes before they got my bike loaded and I was shiverring. This is about the point the sunlight finally decided to peek its head up and offer no warth what so ever.
The bus trip took about 30-40 minues, I don’t really remember, I chatted with the guy next to me but I was gratful just o be out of the cold. It at these points you reflect and go how the hell did I end up on a bus in the middle of nowhere with a large amount of middle aged men in lycra. It was 06:30 and my phone pinged to say I had a message. I opened it up to find some final words of encouragement from my coach and its these little things that just make me appreciate him more and am grateful for guidance. My goal here was pretty simple and that was finish to as close to 3 hours as possible. Tough with the 3 climbs be doable in my head.

Which brings me back to the start line, I’m still cold but have braved removing the leg warmers. Somewhere in my reasoning system I decided to go in the 45kph+ group, figuring once i got dropped the next group through would pick me up and so on. Wasn’t till the start when Crafty (who was MC’ing) made a point of saying how all the people how didn’t make the gold wave were all at the front of my group. I hung on for about 20 minutes but the pace was relentless. Dropped off the group with a couple of others and lost them within a few k’s. Felt pretty crappy here, thought I would have held on a bit longer. Took the second group another 40 minutes to catch me. I got in with them but ended up towards the back when we made the left hand turn into the first hill. Kept a good pace but just lost contact the the main bunch, tried to get back on with another rider but didn’t quite get contact. Ended up in a small group for quite while till my bottle cage cracked and I had to stop to fix it as the bottle was rubbing on the big ring. I lost my group and set back off. This was about the 52k mark. Pushed along on my own agian till I got in another group and stayed with them till the beginning of the main climb. This is where the front of the next wave caught us and everybody just splintered. Took the first k to get the gel to kick in but the hill was ok. I just paced myself and just stuck to my training all the way up trying to keep my cadence high. Came in at 19:54 which is a bit short of where I wanted to be on the climb but I didn’t have anyone over take me on the way and I passed several without going into the red. 
From the descent to the end was basically on my own. This felt the best of the day and I seemed to have more consistent power then during my earlier solo efforts. Pushed on to the end just trying to keep the cadence as high as i could and keep low in the wind. Got to the end and pushed hard to look good across the line.  Unclipped and just felt overwhelmed by it all, briefly till a kid handed me a banana, that solved it all. 3:21:58

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Till next year….

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15/16 Crit Season Review

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It was the last race of the crit season. Around the back of the course the headwind just smashed whoever was on the front. It seemed like there was just no shelter and by this stage the riders in our race had just relented themselves to a single pace-line to keep what energy they could.
 Connor having a practice lap
The 2015/16 Crit season drew to a close on Friday and whilst initially the wind seemed to be nothing but a distraction in turned out to be a defining force in the race. I got a call on my arrival from Dan the Bike man, it was hammering down with rain at Ourimbah. It was however bone dry here although storms were forecast. We had already lost so many race days to rain and flooding this year, not the last one!

 

Last crit of the CCCC summer season. Equaled my PR for the final sprint so at least I was there in the end. #avanti #racing #mcc #outsideisfree #whatyoumissedthisevening #CorsaSL #cycling #critracing #crits #cycling ?? Gary White #cyclingphotos #paceline #pushygalore
Last crit of the CCCC summer season. Equaled my PR for the final sprint so at least I was there in the end. #avanti #racing #mcc #outsideisfree #whatyoumissedthisevening #CorsaSL #cycling #critracing #crits #cycling ?? Gary White #cyclingphotos #paceline #pushygalore
For me this year had been one of positive goals and achievements. I started out wanting to go up a grade and finally take a win. Last year had been so close with a number of podiums in D Grade but none on the top step. The other goal was to get Connor from training at the velodrome to finally getting out there and doing a race.
 
After a delayed start to the beginning of the crit season I lined up with the other riders I had not seen for the last month or so before making our way up to the sign on table. I had started with Mick just a month or so ago and had my shiny new Avanti Corsa SL all dialed in and ready.
 
The goals here were pretty simple, move up a grade. I went to the table to sign on to D grade only to find I was now in C grade. Well ticked that one-off before I had even turned a crank. Turned out most of last seasons D grade was now in C. The racing for the first part of the season was strong. I regularly made breakaways but they never last more than a few laps. I felt good and only seemed to get stronger each race but could just not get it done.
 
In the last race before the Christmas break I found myself sitting at the back of the bunch. Don’t really know why but we were 3/4 of the way through and I was holding a conversation with the rider next to me. I looked down and my HR was really low and it occurred to me I had not put in any efforts this race, just seemed to be floating around. As we came into the hill for the second last lap the bunch slowed and started to play with each other. They opened up a massive hole on the left side of the road just as I came into the bottom of the hill. I grabbed the bars and just thought, “NOW”. I smashed it up the hill hoping to take them by surprise. So far this year I had been able to hold them off for at least one lap before my power reduced.
 
I turned the top corner and down past the finish line collecting the last lap bell in the process. My body went low and I put my head back on my trainer at home, focusing on each stroke and keeping it smooth. I rounded the next corner and pushed before finally making the turn for the last time up the hill. I afforded myself a look to the left as was amazed how much space I had put into the group. The top of the hill is always tough but I was able to dig in and get over, losing a light amount of ground but enough to keep a gap. Into the final corner and head down, not my fastest sprint but i brought it home. Once over the line a massive hoot ūüôā Got it by about 8 seconds.
Finally got it done :) Love seeing the work pay off and a massive thank you to @mickcurrancoaching I think I'm more excited to see where we are going then we have been :) Also a quick shout out to the Avanti Plus Pushy Galore #pushygalore crew for keeping everything working and this awesome machine. Thanks for your support 
Finally got it done ūüôā Love seeing the work pay off and a massive thank you to @mickcurrancoaching I think I’m more excited to see where we are going then we have been ūüôā Also a quick shout out to the Avanti Plus Pushy Galore #pushygalore crew for keeping everything working and this awesome machine. Thanks for your support
The damage was done and I was to be put up to B2 grade. On return from the Christmas break they regraded everybody and B2 got called C. So I went from C to C, but all the C’s went to D. This grade was harder and whilst i felt strong and could keep up but another visit to the podium eluded me. This was mostly due to me making big efforts of the front or trying to get into the breakaway. The sprint in this grade was stronger than what I had but I was unable to break away.
 
As we continued to circulate on this last week, any hope of trying to make a break had diminished. The preem bell went and they put down the power, my plan was to just hang in there and let them wear themselves out. I found a wheel and did my best to keep out of the wind. This seemed to work till the second last lap when everybody had the same idea. I finally got myself back into the group and found a wheel that I wanted. The last lap in this grade is always strong and the pace got higher and higher. We pushed up the last hill and I had the wheel I wanted but as we pushed hard another rider become quite aggressive with his request to have my carefully selected wheel. During this process I just lost contact and came into the final corner towards the back but I had enough to get another wheel and started my sprint. I clawed my way back up to 4th or 5th but just ran out of road.
 
Happy with the season, 1 first place and Connor with 2 3rd places. Just stoked at the progress he had made for the year. Now, bring on the road season!
 

Orica Kermesse 2016; DNF beats DNS

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As I waited the start line in the 36 degree heat one of my team mates stood next to me and learned over,”Just aim to keep in the middle of the pack and you will be fine”. I felt OK but a bit apprehensive. A year ago I was being dropped in our local D-Grade criterium races and I was now lined up in Division 3 of the Orica Kermesse.

I spent the morning watching the girls and juniors race. The division 2 womens race turned out to be a bit of a non event with the Central Coast Cycling Club (CCCC) women being outnumbered and not having the opportunity to have a hard race. The CCCC Juniors took out 2 other races available.

It’s been almost 6 months to the day since I started work with Mick Curran as my coach. I am sometimes confounded by where we end up, not so long ago I would never have dreamed of even riding my bike to work, let alone being under the guidance of a World Record Holder and multiple National Champion.

This was the first time I was competing outside of Central Coast Cycling Club and was one of my 2016 goals. The nerves where there but I knew I had trained hard and just starting the race ticked off that goal. The longer I could hang on to the race, the further I had come in my training.

Waiting for Division 3 to start
Waiting for Division 3 to start

With the heat I was mindful of the 2 bottles I had and spoke with somebody to try to get a refill mid race if needed. Once we were off the pace went out at about 40kph for the first lap. A 3 man break went out but my goal was to stay and finish with the bunch. It was both awesome and a bit daunting racing in a group of 60. The HEZ roads had us at 3 abreast most of the way.

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Heading out to the entry and turn around point for HEZ

The break came back about half way through the second lap. I was just feeling good because I had ticked off 1 full lap. There was some surging but nothing to drastic, just lots of 20 second 300-400w bursts. I found the hardest part of the course the start/finish straight but I think so did most of my division as they mostly coasted after the roundabout. The sprint out the entry roundabout proved to be the biggest repeated effort.

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I was still there by lap 3 and the group seemed to have fallen into a rhythm. I’m not sure if this was a good or bad thing but many around seemed to be tiring. Passing the lap board I thought “one more down, maybe I can hang on here”

I’m not sure what happened but on lap 5 the group got split into three just after the round-about a 4 man break had gone and a small group behind had formed. Somebody had let a gap form and within seconds it went right out. I wondered if this was the race done but moved up the front of our group and worked with another guy to bring it back. Didn’t take long and the group was back to one.

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A second rider went off the front but the group let him go, having said that they smashed it out of the turnaround at the entrance and it took a bit to make sure I did not get a gap. I was bunched in and moving with 3 other CCCC riders about half way back when I heard a motorbike. Thinking that we had to let a faster group through I turned around and I was on the back. I looked back at the group and it seemed like that last surge had wiped out half the group. I could be wrong but we started with over 60 and there was not 60 here…

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Coming back to finish area, down the hill we were on the second last lap about to tick over for the last. I was feeling a bit more confident with the race, and even trying to make a few plans of how I would approach the last stage and straight. I came around the bottom right hand corner onto the straight and just as I was straightening the bike back up I hear a bang and the front wheel goes into the air as it comes down I get the bike back under control and all I can hear is a hissing noise. I put my hand up and pull over. I’m not sure what happened but I’m pretty sure I hit something and hit it hard. (On examination after it was a pinch flat with a nice big snake bite) The motorbike behind me stepped and got some debris of the road but I was at the bottom of the hill by this stage. I looked around but with no team car with a spare wheel I was stuck in no mans land and begin the kilometer or so walk back to the were the club was soigneuring in the feed zone. I thought well at least I can have a drink, look down and my bidon is gone…

Taking the positives away I kept up for the bulk of the group and am confident I would have at least been with the bunch at the end. At the end of the day I was down the price of a tube and I did not have an accident. It was very cool to be in such a big group and soak up the atmosphere of such an event. And even got to through my bidon of to the side (Managed to land it next to my car)

I took the opportunity to take some pictures of other CCCC & MCC riders before heading down to watch the final finishes.

Big kudos to HDCC for putting on the event, CCCC for supporting us all and of course Mick Curran for getting me to a stage to tick of another goal. Did you attend or get some pics? Drop me a line and let me know how you went.

Check out so more images from the great photographers at;
TeamCar
Riding Focus

And as always big thanks to the Pushy Galore crew.

Newcastle CX Cyclocross Round 3

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We are very much on baby duty now and when it came to the crunch we torn as to go to the penultimate round of Newcastle Cyclocross. the kids were desperate to go and ride their Cyclocross race aka the velodrome as they missed out the last round. So we packed up the hospital bags and the bikes and set off to Adamstown.

Course profile
Course profile

The cool and overcast day turned out to be quick bright and warm. By the time the kids where lining up to start their “citing lap” any trace of warm clothing was well and truly removed. Both kids even took the opportunity this time to do some warm up and practice. The lead out for the kids was by event organizer Shannon Lister. The course went anti clock wise around the velodrome before pulling of through the middle with a sharp left hand turn then around back onto the velodrome. The kids had to get off at this point on to the grass and get their bikes over 2 100mm high barriers. Most kids struggled to get over these, the design is probably somewhat flawed (yes I made them) in the end I had to laugh as Emily just kicked it over and walked her bike across. Both kids did great Connor was on the bike/off the bike incredibly fast and was constant throughout his laps. Emily took a bit more getting going on reach remount but to watch her take the sharp left of the track was amazing, she was regularly scraping her pedals as she stuck it in each lap. I suspect her ambition got the better of her as I turned round to find her off the bike, she stated she had tried to ride up the steep embankment that this velodrome had and come off as result. The last lap sounded and massive credit to her she got back on her bike and finished the lap out. Incredibly proud here of both my kids, who at the beginning of the year were struggling to even ride their bikes, let alone race in close quarters. (Watch out Emily will but a racing move on you to get past… ūüôā )

When it came to the my race I had chosen again to compete in the Elite Mens race. I had contemplated doing the B-grade race but I did want to say that I had completed all the CXNewcastle races at this level. As we were lining up to start they widened the entry onto the course. This last-minute reshuffle had me sitting further forward in the line then I had been in the past.

On the start it was on and either I read it right or a heap of others read it wrong because I was all of a sudden at the pointer end then I am used too. I did my best through this first lap as I was well within my rights to hold my place so I thought wide thoughts and pushed on as hard as I could. Attrition showed that with in the first lap and a half I was back towards the back-end where I normally would sit however I was doing a decent job of holding my own against another rider. #111 We pushed on for a lap with him right behind me before finally catching me after going to deep into a muddy hairpin and getting my handlebars caught on the bunting on the way out. I pushed on behind him, entering part of the crit track which allowed me to have a moment to catch a slip stream and get me breath back. With in moments we hit an unridable embankment and I was able to get the better dismount and grip to run up the hill. A clean remount and clip in saw me gain a vital few meters and cleared him for the next lap. However coming out of the same point on the track only on the next lap I was unable to clip in, took a to aggressive line through the corner and was spat out wide. Problem was this is also were a ditch was located and I did my best to ease the bike back onto the road whilst maintaining traction and clip back in. This loss of momentum meant that he was right on my tail, heading up one of the fast hills with much more momentum then me. I pushed as hard as i could but the gap had blown out to about 20 meters, with time i could close it but coming into the section that I had earlier run up to over take him I elected to ride up. Got to the top I did, before not turn quite right and not unclipping. I tumbled back bike in the air before 3 rolls down the hill had me trying to get back up. Well I can proudly say that it’s the biggest cheer I have ever got racing ( that wasn’t my family). I sheepish picked my bike up and tried to catch back up but he was no longer in my sight for this part of the lap.

About this time the leaders had caught me and it happened to be on the crit section of the track again. A quick push saw me in their slipstream trying to ride their speed. Within one embankment they had gained a few meters and by the time we had crossed past my earlier discretion they had put 50m into the distance. They would pass me 2 more times before the end of the race. From this point on I focused on the technical aspects of the track, bunny hopping the logs just got better each lap, and the vertical descent with the 180 turn back up proved to be a challenge but one I was able to complete faster and with out getting off.

On the last lap call I was able to keep in front¬†of the leaders by a lap of the veldorome meaning that I could do the final lap and not too far down. Well 25/26 and “22’00” of the lead.

Finally NBN news was there to catch some of the action.

PCRA BRA Round 2 2014 South Circuit.

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They say that fortune favours the brave…

Round 1 of the 2014 BRA championship had been a bittersweet affair, I walked away with the round win in Commuterlite’s AM but had a very damaged and broken bike. In addition to this I also damaged my helmet when I used it to slow myself down. I was recommended to see the team down at Bikebiz Granville who fitted my out with and OGK Kuboto FF5v helmet. I was looking at this through the recommendation of other racers in the paddock who were using this brand. I had never heard of the OGK/Kuboto, but reviewing it on-line the feedback read very positive and it was Japanese made to boot! The helmet itself is very comfortable to wear, is quite a snug fit but without feeling like your suffocating. One of the most amazing things about the helmet is the peripheral vision. It was not until I was on the track that I realised just how much extra field of view you get from it, not only does it feel like you have eyes in the side of your head but there is more sight area at the top of the helmet too. This makes finding the apex and exit much easier. It also makes the start easier too as you can get a good clear view of the lights with out need to tilt your head up. One of the most interesting things I found with this helmet is the noise. There is very little road noise at all but I can hear the revs of my bike much better then before. It did take some getting used to as the engine tone sounded different compared to my last helmet.

Heading into qualifying I felt a mix of nerves from the previous race but somewhat excited and optimistic to be on a track that I had spent the most amount of my time on.  I had trained hard leading up to this and had made some minor modifications to the bike.

The sun had just started to peak with its warmth and it promised to be a good day. We headed out onto the track and the just took it easy for the first lap or so, checking out the track to see if there were any issues. During the rebuild of the bike from the previous round I had made some small adjustments and changes. I found it really took the first 2 laps to get comfortable and find a body position that seemed to work.

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I was impressed at how comfortable the bike actually felt and as odd as it may sound the track did not seem quite as ‚Äúsmall‚ÄĚ in some sections as I remembered. However I was now stuck in some traffic and being a track with limited overtaking points found it difficult to get by and didn‚Äôt particularly want to put a “race move” on. I backed off and focused on getting my body position better around the bike. I had enough distance now to put a in good flying lap for what turned out to be the final lap of the qualifying session.

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I returned to the pits actually quite sore in the knees. This is one track I find that I move around the bike quite a lot on. The only real opportunity to take a rest is down the back straight and it’s really not that long. I put the bike back in the pits to find the toe part of the gear shifter had slowly worked its way out. Dejavu from the last time I installed rear sets! As per everything else, some loctite seemed to fix that problem. The qualifying results turned out to be quite positive. I had clocked a 1:18.6310 on my final lap which gave me P5 on the grid, a second row start. This was also the fastest AM grade time by 0.5 putting me on the pole for the class. Whilst I had not cracked my own PB for this track, I assumed as the day went on, the track heated up and I got more confident with the bike that this would time change.

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Race 1

The time did not change; actually everybody‚Äôs lap times went backwards as the rain came hammering in. It seemed to come out of nowhere and the biggest bucketing happened just as the pit-lane ‚Äú2 minute‚ÄĚ board came out. I gingerly went around the out lap and gridded up into P5. As the lights went out the front 4 made a mad dash for turn 1. I tried to slot in behind them to keep out of trouble. The lead group headed into turn 1 with #171 Arthur Cook in the lead, with his left leg out dirt track style! I remained in 5 spot behind #16 Robert Young as we made our way over the back and through the hairpin. We came out of the bowl and onto the back straight only to be greeted by Ron Pulido #136 going through the grass on the right hand side! How he kept it upright is unknown to me. He was able to rejoin the race just behind and passed myself and #16 on lap 2. I was also able to get past #16 this lap. By this stage my helmet had started to fog quite badly. Once a moment became available I opened up the visor slightly and it cleared instantly. The bike struggled for rear end grip continually through the race, especially at turn opposite the pits leading to the start line (5) where the sheeting of water was right across the apex. #888 Jack Robinson showed me his wheel through turn 1, I elected to yield this spot as the weather was getting worse and my race was not with Jack. This move however cost me the class lead as #20 managed to get through with him. Coming up through the back of the straight where Ron had gone cross country earlier I too lost grip and the bike went very wide coming very very close to the grass. The weather did not abate and I don’t think I have ever wanted to last lap board so much! I nursed it back through the final laps just trying to keep it in a line that had the most grip.

Race 2

I was not looking forward to race 2, but the weather had started to dry somewhat and whilst the track was still wet it was not bucketing down. I was now starting 6th on the grid, 2nd in the class. The out lap provided the opportunity to see that the back half of the track had actually dried out somewhat and looked good. As we rolled up to the start the rain and wind came blazing in, heaver then before.

My competitors had a blinding start and I was back to 9th by turn 1. I was able to hold my own till the back straight but the grip was poor and the bike was proving difficult to ride. # pushed past me and had caught up to # Rez by the end of the back straight where Rez turned the corner and low-sided hard. His bike pushed up against #81 Robert Tisdell who was lucky to keep it upright. Rez rolled/slid/rolled again down the bitumen as I just back right off, not wanting to repeat his misfortune. Coming out wide for turn 5 I struggled again with grip. The rest of the field were very quick to catch me and I yielded the spots. At this point the race was not enjoyable and after last round I wanted to take my bike home in one piece. Coming through the hairpin on lap 4 I was overtaken by the final competitor and was in last place. By this point the weather had got much worse, my confidence in the bike and grip was incredibly low. I think the others in the pack were keen to get some points as they were pushing harder than race 1.

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The one thing that I will put down to a positive experience here is my Kuboto FF5v. Once I opened the venting system the visor did not fog again. I was actually quite amazed at how well the system worked. I have never had a helmet that was quite as comfortable, had great noise quality and vented so well. As mentioned before the noise was great, the fit was perfect!

Conclusion: I do not like racing in the rain! I’m sure given more experience and practice it would be ok, but having a bike step out under throttle racing is something I have only had minimal experience with. I have a new found expect for flat trackers and speed way riders.¬†I was lucky enough to take out 3rd overall for the class during the day, but a big congrats to #25 Michael Lemon and #13 Andrew Martin for taking out 1st and 2nd in what was a very tough race. Fortune does favour the brave.¬†Congrats also to Cookie, Ron and Nic for the Pro class 123.

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Big thank you to all the flaggies, marshal and retrieval teams who were stuck out in the rain all day. In additional to all the photographers who went out with all their gear in the rain to get some fantastic images. Hoping for a much less damp day for round 3 at the end of May.

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PCRA BRA NSW Commuterlite Championship Round 1 2014 Race report

Round 1 of the Post Classic Racing Association /  Bucket Racing Association championship was a very bittersweet affair.

For the last 3 months I have pushed as hard as I could to increase my fitness. Cycling most days and monitoring my input had me in what I felt was a better state than the final round from last year.

Happy overall with the 2013 season I wanted to finish in the top 10 for the champioship from last years 12th. Due to an increase in numbers the class was split into Pro’s and AM’s. This being based on previous race results and lap times. I was graded to the AM class.

Goulbourn greeted us with a very cool and crisp morning. Walking through the town to get coffee saw just about every shop that was open being patronized by riders and support crew. Every why you liked on the streets, the traffic was some form of motorcycle transport.

Qualifying
The last time I went to Wakefield Park was late in the 2013 season. My best lap for that outing was a 1:33.6. However this was achieved with what was later found to be a dragging front brake. My main goal for the day was to get my PB down under the 1:30 mark. I also decided to try out Harrys GPS Laptimer on and old iphone to give me real time lap information.

This proved to be quite useful and very accurate. I was able to get a 1:31.71 which placed me 27th on the grid and 9 com and 5 Com AM. I was happy to beat the PB but felt I had more.

Race 1
In race 1 I had a great start making up some positions by turn 2. Going up the hill on lap one was full of traffic. The best plan seemed to be avoid where possible till the race thinned out somewhat. At the end of lap 2 I cam in hard to turn 10 when the bike suddenly stopped mid turn. I put my hand up and was quickly overtaken by the other competitors. Thankful that It was clean. My now stalled bike rolled into the back of pit-lane.

As I looked up the race had been red-flagged, due to an accident at turn 2. I pushed the bike into the garage and my awesome pit crew and I set to work to figure out the problem. After locating a very suspect lead that was no longer connected to my battery we fired it back to life. At this point the announced that the race would be a full race restart.

Chasing down #888 Jack in race 1
Chasing down #888 Jack in race 1

A few minutes later we headed back out to the starting grid. This turned out to advantageous for me. By the end of turn 2 I found myself chasing down #888 Jack Robinson. Jack and spent the next 4 laps exchanging places on the circuit. Going to lap 4 I was able to hold him at at turn 2 where he had been getting a much better line. Once I was past I spotted #171 Arthur Cook in my sights. Cookie is a mate of mine but I have never been able to beat him. I pushed the next lap as hard as I could, setting my fastest lap pf the day a 1:27.7. Second only to Ron Pulido for the class for the outing. Coming in to turn 10, the penultimate corner of the final lap I was able to get right on Cookies heels. I missed my gear change, hit the limiter and felt it start to slip away. I was close enough to get the draft on him and made myself as small as I could. Catching him in the slipstream I pulled out at the last second pushing as hard as I could to get it over the line. We were wheel to wheel as we crossed the line. Unknown if I had in fact beaten him I was happy to have had chase.

Pulling into the Pits I was notified that I had beaten him by 0.020 seconds! This gave me 3rd outright in Commuterlites and 2nd in the class.

Race 2

Coming of the back of the previous rate I had mixed feelings of increased confidence mixed with a feeling of having to meet my own expectations I had just laid down. However the heat had risen significantly with the track temp now about 55c.

Rolling to my grid spot for race to I clicked down into 1st gear. Checked my clutch friction point and prepared for the start. The lights went out, clutch came off and everybody went around me. Right, turns out I had selected 2nd not 1st. I lost 8 positions off the start and was now in pursuit of my rivals. I found focus and had passed 6 bikes by lap 3. Coming up the hill I got around another riding before taking a sweeping arc at the top of the hill. I had just caught sight of #888 and #171 and felt that I was catching my places.

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Overtake on turn 10

Unbeknown to me I was now coming 1st in the AM class with 2nd and 3rd very close on my heels. Coming down to the hairpin I setup to go a little wide and deep to take a sweeping exit across the hairpin into the second left corner. As I came and committed to the corner I heard another bike very close. I looked up to find my next apex to see a black bike on the edge of my vision. Next thing I know I felt a massive shunt to me left rear and I was being thrown to the right. The asphalt came up very quickly as I hit the ground and slid across the turn. I remember rolling once however the video shows me rolling several times.

I was pretty stunned and whilst I had feeling everywhere I felt very dizzy and found it very difficult to get back up. I saw my bike laying in the track in pieces. When I did mange to get up I signaled to the Marshall and was able to go and pick the bike up and get it into neutral and off the track. At this point the medics arrived and felt it best to have a check over.

Once cleared of anything major I left the medics clinic and went to the tower to see the final standings. It turned out that the decision to red flag had in fact declared our race for the day. The officials had deemed to to hot to continue and the last few races were run, ending the day early.

I was in disbelief. I had not known that I had made up the necessary places to take first place in the class. Additionally the 2 riders behind were in 2nd and 3rd. This gave me the race win and enough points to take out the round 1 win for Commuterlite AM!

A big thank to Jye Lawrence for all the Pit lane help, bike setup and fitness coach, Drew Lawrence for driving home and general work avoidance, Ken Lawrence to the mechanical help, Will Russell for getting me of my butt onto some training and finally Andrew Wilson from PyhsioXtra at Erina from my pre-race physiotherapy.

Round 2 6/4/14. Sydney Motor-sport Park South Circuit. Entry is free for this event. Qualifying starts at 9