|Team CMC Jersey and Number(s) ready to go.|
The course profile and map for each of the 44 km laps can be seen below:
|Fred Icke Memorial Profile|
This year I wasn't quite as lucky with my handicap (this year being 12 minutes) nor with the weather. Melbourne the night before had had it’s highest ever single day of rainfall for the first day of winter with almost 50 mm of rain bucketing the city. Creswick had copped most of that storm as well over night and there was a lot of standing water on the road.
|Pre-race Creswick.. looking left, hmm wet.|
|Pre-race Creswick.. looking right, yep still wet.|
My form doesn't feel all that great at the moment, I've had a couple of weeks outside of cycling that have impacted on me. It’s not an unusual thing but when I’m stressed I eat and apparently I must have been pretty stressed as I have done nothing but eat... which included eating all those things that I shouldn't be eating. Consequential I felt sluggish and bloated leading into this race, the scales don't lie and it really showed on the day.
The first lap I was feeling pretty good but on the second lap I began to get a bit bogged down and my cadence dropped down a few RPM, as a compensation measure to maintain my work effort I had grabbed a harder cog. By the third lap I wasn't feeling overly sprightly and as we started the climb out of Creswick we were told that the leaders were still 11 minutes up the road. Great. How’s that for a motivation killer, out bunch basically stopped pedaling out of despair. We were now on the climb and even though I was feeling a little shabby I jumped on the front of our group to ride tempo to keep our momentum going up the climb.
Well hindsight is great... and that turned out to be a mistake.
I didn't actually know then but scratch were also on the climb at this point and other riders in our bunch recognised this and jumped up the road to ensure they would not get caught on the climb. Scratch came past at a fair rate of knots and I had done a little too much tempo riding up to this point and didn't have the leg speed to or strength to respond as they came past. My legs were beginning to feel like cement blocks.
|Getting rounded up by Scratch... via Brian Mangano Phtoography|
We made it home dirty, wet and cold, but safe and my legs certainly were making it clear that they had still had a pretty serious workout.
|...and I thought I had a tan.. nope, just road grime and dirt.|