About 3 weeks ago I had just had 2 weeks off the bike and wasn't feeling that motivated to train. Then I went for a casual ride one saturday and enjoyed it so decided it was still possible to do my first sub 5 hour dirtworks/convict race. Reality struck the next day when I got dropped by the slower C grade bunch out at west head.
So I did what any disorganised person would, some serious last minute cramming and I got to the start line thinking 4:45 was a possibility.
We did the Mont last year in an open team and went OK so after getting on the podium at the Scott in Masters Dicko and I decided to put a masters entry in. A forced change in sponsor had Dicko searching for a replacement. Lupine Lights stepped up and kitted us out for the event. A huge thanks to Bill and the team at Lupine here in Australia, your support is appreciated.
Its been two years since my only Capital Punishment race so was happy to go back down to Canberra for another go.
After the fling it took about half a day to move fully into holiday mode as I didn't have any more races scheduled for 2012. Then an email or two arrived containing the usual combination of Dicko and Ant's enthusiasm about one last race for the year.
Preparing for these events when you have a family and work commitments is always a balancing act. Last year I was able to follow a proper training plan for the first time in the weeks leading into this event and had a really enjoyable race as I cruised through in a bit under 6 hours.
The phone call went like this:
(me) What day can I pick up the bike?
(Rob Booker) You cant, Specialised haven't sent the shock back yet. Were you riding this weekend?
(me) Yes. Im coming 2nd in the series.
Then before I had time to think about NOT riding in the last round and state champs.
(Rob Booker) Your a large aren't you? You can ride the test bike.
(me) OK, that should be good.
This race was the end of a 4 week block of racing. I had done OK in the race last year so had been looking forward to it. In the week leading up to the race I had been really tired so just concentrated on doing the minimum amount of training for a taper week.
I travelled down with Dicko and after registration and a quick chat with Steve 01 we did a short warmup and waited on the startline for the briefing. It was pretty cold and damp so I chose to leave my clear glasses behind. Later I would pay for that decision a few times.
This race was initially scheduled for Mt Annan however a bit of midweek rain had the promoter swapping the locations for Rd2 & 3. I like Awaba so stayed positive despite a few ml of rain in the days leading up the race.
Went into this race with limited training and ended up with my best result so far this XCM season so pretty happy with how things turned out. Had a pretty uneventful race. I passed Jason English at one stage, then he got back on his bike and rode back to the front of the elites. The ride of the day in my book.
Managed to get sick leading into this race so was still a bit apprehensive sitting on the start line even though I had done a good training session on Thursday. Got to the first hill in the lead pack fairly comfortably and then got blocked by an inconsiderate rider on the early part of the hill. Doc rode past me while I walked up to a water bar to restart. Didn't ride that well in the first fire road section through to the first water stop although after that sharp right hander and the start of the techie section began to enjoy myself.