14 posts • Page 1 of 1
Anyone else doing this apart from me?
135km handicap race from Wagga Wagga to Albury.
Rumour has it I've gotten a pretty good handicap, which I'll need I think, seeing as I have no clubmates with me on this trip.
Here's hoping it's not too cold, and dry on Sunday.
Looks like the rumours were right - I'm off limit, which gives me a 29 minute start over scratch.
Also in a fairly large group with 17 other riders, so it could be an interesting race if I can hang on to my group.
Absolutely fantastic day in Wagga Wagga for the start. Temps around 10 deg and no wind.
I was off limit with the other Div 4 riders, Div 3 started about 11 minutes back, then Div 2 at 22 minutes, and finally Div 1 at 29 minutes.
We had 18 riders in our group, so I was pretty confident we could get a good speed, and from the start the pace was on.
The first part of the 135km course contained the most hills, but we still managed a respectable 38km average for the first hour.
My riding wasn't going so well. By the 17th km I was flagging at the back and at times I had to dig deep into the red zone to stay on.
By the 25thkm I had recovered somewhat and the riding got considerable easier. To be honest, the group had moments of a coordinated pack, but then it would all turn to crap (usually on a rise) and riders would be everywhere. If you left half a wheel to the guy in front of you, someone would try to jump in it, thus causing the rider behind to brake, and in turn they would then leave a gap in the line that forced the rider behind to close by surging. Ugh.
There was an intermediate sprint in a little town called Cuncairn, but I had no idea where that was, so when I rolled off the front and was swallowed up by the paceline, I didn't even know that some guys had sprinted away. No warning signs or nothing. A little pissed about that.
Apart from all that, all was going well until the 93km mark, when I started flagging again. By the 103km mark I'd managed to get back on and was riding ok, but then Div 3 caught us and the pace lifted, only slightly though, but it was enough to see myself and two others get dropped by the 106km mark.
I time trialled for the next 12km even though I knew I could never catch them, but then the combined Div 2 & 1 riders passed me and it was all over. My knees were screaming in agony, and I was getting very sore legs. I tried to flag down the sag wagon for a lift, but the bugger just kept going straight past me.
The last 15km were the longest of my life. I was swearing I'd never do this race again.
Not sure where I finished, but my time was 3:43:08 with an average of 36km/hour.
The 5 hour drive home sure hasn't helped my legs, which are all crampy and sore now. Time for a hot shower and a good dose of dencorub I think.
You know what? I probably will do it again next year, now that I know what to expect.
Well done to anyone who lines up for this race let alone finishes it, I too raced this years John Woodman as l have done for the last 4 years, being from Albury it's my A race for the year and l try to peak at this time of the season.
For the first 3 years l was in limit and it usually rains or we have a strong head wind, crosswind or strong tailwind, this year the conditions were pretty neutral with just a slight cross/tailwind and it was only the second time l've not said to myself l'll never do this race again, but within days or sometimes hours lol I'm planing my training for the next one.
This race is a tough handicap being uphill from the start with continuous rollers for the first ~40min this is the biggest test of the day and if you can hang on till it flattens out then everyone's balls have started to shrink and pace settles down to a managable level but buy then the lungs are fine but legs are nearly shot and there's still almost 3 hours left of rolling through the paceline
This year l was in div 3 and like you Kev l started flagging not long after Culcairn so I went to the back and tried to get it together, with a little rest, some food in the belly and some more fluids I musted enough courage to jump back in the paceline and managed to take about 2 out of every 3 roations and by the time we had caught div 4 I was feeling pretty good and not missing any turns at the front.
Then when the gentle climb to Glenelg started combined with a slight cross wind l was flagging again, and I knew from experiance that someone will launch over Glenelg hill and if you were't near the front then you'd be off da back, so l nutted my way toward the front to find that no one really wanted to pull up the hill so feeling good that everyone was as flat as me l lifted the pace a little to see who would respond and sure enough a small group surged over the top and I latched on with a good group also latching on behind me,
from then on it was clear we were away and never going to get caught so from there I "hid" (untill the final climb ~2km from the finish, (~25min or so at only 136w avg power.)
Once again l knew this race well and had to get to the front before the road tilted upwards with still 25 or so riders still in action I sheepishly moved up toward the front and found a spot waiting for me.... how nice thankyou to that kind fellow if your reading this.
At the base of the final climb the heat went up and getting swamped was unavoidable with panic and attacks causing riders to loose wheels and getting shelled opening up big gaps , I managed to latch on to the main group of about 12 which came together with the catch of the last 2 that tried to get gap on the decent,
now bombing down the runway at ~70km which only slowed to 50km as we hit the round about l made sure l went through in the first 5 at two deep and exited full tilt to a slight rise with 200m or so to the finish line we hit 57+km and got a small but maintainable gap and I managed to shake 2 of them but 2 more on my right had more gas left then me (they must have hid for 35min ) anyway I held on for third my first podium in a state open so I still had a grin after it was all said and done,
and..... I'll be back again next year for another crack!
I'll be at Coota in 2 weeks as well so l may see some of you guys there as well.
Well done mate. Good to see a Div 3 rider get up for a podium.
I assume that Divs 1 & 2 never caught you?
Hope to see you at Coot in 2 weeks. Look for a guy in a Macarthur kit on a white Kuota Kolt, and that's me.
Great race reports guys
Thanks Kev. We never saw div 1/2 and the last time check l remember somewhere around Walla Walla as it was all a bit of a blur was limit 1:20 ahead and div 1/2 10min back.
I'll be in a yellow Albury/wodonga jersey and black nicks not blue nicks like other club members, riding a dark blue & white specialized.
Looking forward to it.
Well done to both of you...great reports as well.
I ride several bicycles, but not at once.
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