william's perspective (aka Rick),
Packed the car with bikes and bits the night before which included 3 kids bikes and one Dahon folder for Olivia. Taking off pedals and wheels, no problem. The race machine went on top in the morning then filled the car with clothes, snacks, drinks and finally the right amount of kids. Quick check that everything was loaded and off we went.
Arrived with plenty of time to spare, unusual when the family comes, quick adjustment to everything and off to the start area to meet and greet. A beautiful morning with perfect weather and company whilst thinking why are recumbent riders always friendly. I don't think I have met a bad one, hmm! Any grumpy, bad recumbent riders out there?... No? Thought so.
It was great to meet up with familiar faces and especially great to see new ones too, along with family members and friends. It felt like a fantastic social occasion and was. However... There is a race about to begin....
We astutely assembled at the start line for a clean getaway, besides we didn't want to run anyone over so we hustled the front row. This is when I realised that no matter how hard I try and organise things there is always something I forget. This time it was my camera. Arghh! Bugga!
At least I didn't forget my helmet.... Er, Sorry, cannot mention his name for decency but he does ride a yellow Rans... I feel for Ya Graeme. Oops! sorry.
From the photo you can see a mix of bikes and trikes, from manufacturers, home design and of course the Avatar on loan from Ben Goodall and his company Trisled piloted by Ken. All our bikes received huge attention when they came around the course.
Back to the start... From the front of the grid along side me was Rob, then Mike on his gt5 and slightly behind was Graeme. The starter was babbling to my ear and all I was thinking about was a good clean, fast start. Did I mention fast. You Betcha!
When they said ready... set... my hand was on the brake, pressure was on the go pedal, waiting like an explosion... GO! Yelled the starter... Push, push, push I was peddling to get that start cleanly but holey moley, Mike on the gt5 was off like he was slung out from a bungy cord followed closely by Rob with Graeme slightly behind me making a fantastic paceline, what a sight accelerating rapidly to 32 then 34, 36, 38, Woah! I'm going to blow up at such and early pace then I notice a couple of roadies slightly behind and thought its just a 6 K sprint so push the pace a bit more. Before we were half way around the circuit I was behind Mike sitting on 42. I was dodging around behind him looking for the draught only to find a buffeting of wind, no good. Man this guy is fast on his gt5. He eased a little before the tram crossing and I thought to keep the pace for him and took a turn in front. The left hand turn at the bottom of the course was taken flat out at 42 and I think thats the fastest I have gone around any corner then glanced over my shoulder looking for the others but we had spread out a bit. Then coming into the change over area in what seems a quick first lap it was finished with a blistering time that had people looking more at "these" recumbents.
The next 4 riders went out when we decided that 2 lap stints would be more efficient and it looks like it was paying off as the next nearest scoring teams were only one lap down on us.
The recumbents were now starting to get a lot of attention especially the Avatar and the colourful Mu Mu ridden by Steve at an astonishing pace that observers couldn't believe. Everywhere in the crowd you could hear kids yelling out to their mums, "look at that".
Ken was surprised at one stage to see riders trying to draught his Avatar so pushed it to about 60k just to show off a bit.
Lloyd was happy racing around on his Optima taking videos and photos whilst riding, so cool Lloyd. Mark also had a video cam on his helmet so would like to see some of them too. (hint). Mark's wife luckily had a good camera and hopefully got a few good shots of the action. Would like to see those too. Ahem! if you read this. Eric was trying to slip under the radar with his designed and built low racer. If he hadn't raised his hand going past the barriers we may have missed him.
We were having a great time and the scores were close with only one other team. In the closing minutes we decided to do single sprint laps to try and squeeze the last lap in. The boys were riding furiously with the last of their legs energy left and then came the siren for the cut off time. We waited anxiously for the final riders to come in and be counted. Looking at the other team it could be neck and neck depending on where the last rider went out and how many were on the track. I don't like waiting for anything but...
There it was;
TEAM SomethingThirty: 51 Laps
BENT RIDERS: 52 Laps :WINNERS
Woo! Woo! Now we're talkin'. And so was everyone else. Time for a celebratory cola, coffee or snack.
It was a fantastic day. A great event that was run for charity and all proceeds went to the cancer research department in Ballarat.
Everyone had a good time and I would be happy to do that again.
Congratulations to all the riders and cheerio to family and supporters too.
I had a wonderful time.