Sunday, 5 July 2015

Podium for Neil at Equipe Velo Road Race

Ouch. Top of hill, pained face, break in bits
Neil began today with a pootle out to our most local Road Race Circuit. So close it would be rude not to. 

Not to mention that our pals from Equipe Velo had put a lot of work in to stage their race in their first year. 

It was on the short Mentmore Circuit which means that you have to climb the Mentmore 'lump' lots of times.Hmmm, as Eugen would say.

A very civilised start was great until the CD race caught and passed the AB race. Interesting. And a challenge for the organisers, which they handled with grace and ease. 

more pain
Then the attack happened that a number of people expected: Roy Chamberlain of Corley Drops RT and James Fox CC Luton accelerated, and Neil jumped with them, shortly joined by Paul Dring of Echelon Rotor. ABs overtook CDs and status quo. Oh hang on, not quite, the move became a full-blown break. The foursome was going well but Neil was only too aware that Roy and Mr Fox probably had a bit more to burn. " I knew I had to be careful," he recalls."

He wasn't quite careful enough though and with five laps still to go, the more dynamic duo hung back at the foot of the hill and then shot past Neil and Paul. 

he loves a presentation: Neil flanked by Andy from Wildoo and organiser Simon Moss
"I gave it everything I had to try and hang on," says Neil. "But I just didn't have the power." So, what to do? "I would generally have crawled back to the next guy on the road and teamed up," he continues. "But I knew we had a reasonable gap at that point, so I though I would try and make it on my own."

And so he rode the last five laps solo, with Dring squeezing out another solo effort behind him: "It was one of the biggest efforts I've ever done," says Neil. "I definitely found my limit. I did at least get plenty of cheers at the finish. Probably out of sympathy!" He held a 2 minute gap by the finish, for 3rd place and 2nd in the A category, with Dring just holding off the bunch for 4th.

Neil and John fly round Redbourn Green

Evidently not quite content with this, Neil hared off home to regroup for the Redbourn Fete Du Velo where he had a bash at the  Masters Race, coming in 5th with John in 10th. 

Apparently his legs "weren't quite 100%"...

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