Friday, 7 January 2011

Tour de Vineyards

You may be forgiven for assuming the Tour de Vineyards is a wine tasting outing, sadly not! On the first day of the New Year I took part in the Tour de Vineyards, the very first race of 2011 in the world! I wasn’t sure going into this race what kind of race form I would be in, but I went with the mind-set that I had nothing to lose and at the end of the day it’s all just training at the moment. Stage 1 was a bit of a shock to the system, having done no speed work for several months, not aided by the fact I still felt nocturnal. It was just a short race with laps of a 5k circuit which ended in a bunch sprint. Stage 2 and my legs started to wake up, the race was pretty fast at times but on the whole the pace wasn’t too furious as everyone knew it would all be decided on the final 16k climb of the last 133k race. It was pretty solid especially as it was scorching, I cracked a bit at the bottom as it started really steep; I managed to compose myself and start working my way back to the riders up the road. I finished 6th, a couple of people hadcollapsed with sun stroke/ dehydration on the climb!

Stage 3 started well, annoyingly 20k from the end someone dropped their chain and I had to pull my foot out on a climb, I tried to chase back on but couldn’t so time trailed it on my own to the end, I finished 5th. The final stage was a DISASTER. It was a crit around a 2k circuit, not really my cup of tea! Won’t go into the detail as I have already drawn a line over it, but working on of my cornering is now at the top of my priories! I ended up finishing 5th on GC, not a disaster but at the end of the day it would be asking a lot to be flying right now considering I don’t need to peak until June. Someone in the race came up to me afterwards and said, “You are bloody strong but you can’t corner!” Good that kiwi’s feel they can speak their mind! Cath Cheatley won the tour, she has just won the NZ road Champs, and she won the US title last season too, so pretty good competition! (Sorry the picture is so crappy!)

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