powered by HONDA

Australian Professional Cyclist

World Cup Holland

Hello All!

I write to you with an update from today’s World Cup.

Firstly, I raced a UCI 1.1 race two days ago called Drentse8. I had a great feeling in the race but unfortunately I punctured my front wheel with 10km to go; I was positioned in the top 10 and knew there was a short cobble section approaching 3km from the finish- so a wheel change would have been the end of my race. The lead out trains had started and the pace was very high.

I decided to try and hold position and ride carefully as the rim was only just hitting the road over the rough surfaces. There was a tight left hand corner 400m’s from the finish and it was impossible to hold position through the corner – as I couldn’t lean the bike, so I lost position and momentum. The acceleration on the pave was extremely difficult as I could only stay in the seat (due to the front wheel puncture)…. I just slogged it out to the line and finished 9th. Ninth looks very disappointing on paper but given the circumstances it was an ok effort- due to bike handling skills and determination.

If I thought my bad luck was out of the way ahead of today’s world cup- I was seriously wrong.

5km’s into todays race I had a pedal go into my rear spokes during a mass pile up- which ripped my wheel/spokes to bits! Our support vehicle was 18 cars back- and completely blocked. It felt like I was waiting forever before I decided to take the rear wheel from my teammate (Veronica Andreasson) who was waiting with me to assist with the chase. I set off and climbed the first small hill alone before reaching the convoy on the descent. I worked through the cars and was back in the bunch 15km later.

This race is famous for the cobble sections between 50km’s and 70km’s (this is where the race usually splits to bits). The rear wheel I was riding was not placed in the bike straight but I knew I couldn’t make another change before the cobbles.

I rode the cobble sections from 50km’s-70km’s in top 10 position and started to feel really good. My mechanic was waiting at the 75km mark with a spare bike (I had word on the radio to make a bike change). The bike change was fast and I didn’t need to work too hard to get back into the bunch. The second climb of the day was approaching at the 93km mark.

I climbed and crested the Vamberg in about 5th position and on the descent I hear PSSSSSSSS…. Damn, puncture!!! I pull to the side and held my rear wheel in the air and watch the split to bits bunch fly past… Luckily Tiffany Cromwell saw me and threw a right hand turn onto the grass and quickly gave me her rear wheel, we were not the fastest mechanics! I started a desperate chase- there was no convoy so I was extremely grateful to see that Vicki Whitelaw had dropped back to assist me. Vicki and I rested in the second group for about 3-5minutes before she bridged across to the main group like a steam train!

At the 100km mark (33km to go) I was back in the group again. What next? I needed to get back onto my race bike and fast wheels for the sprint; 113km mark; another bike change, little chase and back in the bunch with 20km to go- and the pace was on!

All things considered- I was still feeling ok. Umm, I thought I was feeling ok.

My teammates had all done a great job today and they had achieved the task of delivering me back to the main bunch a few times- so I was alone in the actual finish.

The last kilometres are always a bit of bluur, I can’t really pin point where or how I lost position- I finished 5th. I still don’t know how to feel about 5th, I definitely expected more from myself so I’m left with the question, did all the stress and chasing take the edge off… or am I lacking top end power/speed? I guess I’ll just take the positives, I’m feeling fit and healthy and had fun out there in spite all of the day’s troubles.

Tomorrow’s another day; UCI 1.2 race. Ronde van Gelderland in Apeldoorn. 140km.

Thank you for your support, more from me soon!

website design by essendon web