In the 123 race at Lee Valley on a wet Wednesday night last week I lined up with around 15 other riders for the hour long race. (And to any nay sayers, you can't race who isn't there! I did have to ride through some fairly torrential rain to get there).
The race unfolded with myself joining an attack around 20 minutes in which didn't last for my companion in the break, but I pushed on for a further half an hour others tried to join me but felt the bunch was looming too close at times. Whenever the bunch did get a bit close I felt that I wouldn't have enough left for a sprint in the finale anyway, so I thought to myself "I'll give them a bloody hard time trying to catch me anyway. I'm not giving up."
After half an hour in my heart-rate zone 5 off the front I was caught with a few laps to go. I cramped horrendously in my right leg and was in a lot of pain slightly off the back of the bunch. I downed the rest of my water and decided to fight through it instead of withdrawing, I knew I'd regret it if I did.
The cramp subsided after a couple of laps, I felt rested enough to attack again- I attacked, then heard the bell for one lap to go, maybe not a good time to try heroics. I was swiftly caught by the bunch. Into the bunch sprint I had myself positioned nicely, just a few wheels back. I found a gap and went for it. I don't confess to being a sprinter at all but somehow managed to take 2nd place on the line. Kudos to Alex Blomeley who got his tactics spot on to come past me to claim the win.
Thanks again to my sponsors Panagua Bikes and Beta Performance who I wouldn't have been able to do this without their support!