Sunday, June 28, 2009

British Mountain Bike Cross Country Series Round 4

Ian and I returned from the fourth round of the British Cross Country Series 6hrs ago, but our brains are still a bit behind the times and I'm struggling to stay awake. I experienced one of my hardest races yesterday and to my surprise finished in first place. The course was physically very tough or should I say brutal, both on the legs and even the brain. Every rider was forced to concentrate on the technical rooty sections as it was easy to slip or lose speed if you took a bad line. There were plenty of flat switch backs too and I really had to remind myself to look ahead to ensure I gave myself time to get in the right position so I could carry speed and not waste an ounce of energy unnecessarily. There wasn't a moment of rest due to the short climbs and twisting tight single track. It was a fantastic course that was testing in so many ways, and I can honestly say that I loved racing yesterday at Crow Hill, even though it hurt....alot

I must have been out of the saddle for at least 80% of the race and my legs are feeling it today. I was constantly trying to increase the small margin that separated myself from British National Champion Jenny Copnall who I knew was close behind. We had started together on the first lap and even when I had taken over the lead Jenny was right on my tail. I managed to break away towards the end of the first lap, but didn't dare look behind to see what the gap was as I knew there wasn't much in it.  Even when the finish line was in sight I didn't dare ease off the pace as I kept expecting Jenny to sprint past me at any moment. I was lacking some top end speed today due to my training at the moment so I knew if Jenny and I sprinted for the line she would be the stronger racer. So I had to work extra hard to ensure it didn't come down to a sprint finish as my legs weren't capable of accelerating very fast today, but felt strong at a hard consistent speed if that makes any sense...

I'm afraid my fingers are now starting to give in as we had a 4:30am start this morning because Ian set his watch wrong....we thought it was 6:30am. My brain feels fried from post race excitement...which means little sleep anyway and an over zealous brain so it will be a day or two before my full report goes live....sorry. Ian and I have another early start tomorrow as we fly back to France and then I'm off to Spain for a race or rather a good training session where I will face the world champion Margherita Fullana...(gulp). I can guarantee a very hard work out there and then, but as always I'm looking forward to the challenge.

As always thanking Cotic Bontrager Race Team, co-sponsors, friends and and family for all your endless support.

Cheerios for now

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