This race was going to be tough as it had 2000 metres of climbing in 80 kilometres which is one of the main reasons I entered it, as well as having Chris and Scott Roberts in the race. I rode the 10 kilometre course with Scott two hours before the race. The decent was very fast and the climb was into the the wind, which made it a bit slower. I didn’t do a proper structured warm up as there was a couple kilometre neutral section.

The race started pretty normally with a fast pace set on the first climb which dropped two thirds of peloton because of no drafting due to the slow speeds on the climb. On the first decent it was crazy fast, I was doing 80 kph and there we people flying past me going off the front.  All I could do was rest as I couldn’t pedal with junior gears. Every lap up the climb got faster and the number of people in the group decreased.

After an hour in the group my right shifter came loose and I was not able to apply too much load to it, this meant I had to climb on the tops and the drops which was not natural at all. Ten minutes later on the last bit of the climb I got dropped as the pace increased and I didn’t close the gap soon enough. It sat up for a couple of seconds again, but I didn’t close the gap. I got dropped.

Every lap before it had slowed down over the top and come back together on the decent. This time it didn’t so lots of people got dropped at the same point. I worked with these people, but got dropped on the climb as I was struggling to get out of the saddle with my loose lever.

I was absolutely shattered after the race after turning myself inside out to finish 12th place. I now need to focus my attention to more important things like my exams in 6 weeks before really getting stuck into racing in the summer and working on my endurance a bit more. Thanks to the sponsors for the ongoing support it was nice to race as a team, all looking professional in the same kit, we had a few good comments as well!