World Masters Road Race Championship, St. Johann in Tirol, Austria
August 29th 2015
Words of thanks to you all...
I've had time to rest and reflect on yesterday's performance in the World Masters Road Race Championship at St. Johann in Tirol, Austria... overall I'm pleased with 16th but it could've been 6th had I the legs to go with an attack 10km to the finish - a brave and clever move by that rider, chapeau!
Various attacks during the first half of the race, then the decisive move that would set the pattern for the remaining 60km... 5 riders (3 Germans, 1 Polish and 1 Italian) attacked shortly after the main climb and soon built up a 2 minute lead... how I don't know, because the pace never eased in what was left of the main peloton of approximately 40 riders.
Ascending the main climb for the final time was hell, with each rider scrambling to hold a wheel as the pace kept increasing towards the summit. It's the first time this year I've ever gone deep into the red zone and over my maximum threshold heart rate of 181bpm to 187bpm... I was seeing stars near the summit and fighting for breath, especially in the heat (35 degrees). From the summit of the main climb it's 30km to the finish - too far going solo, not that I had the legs mind. Having built up a 3 minute lead we was never going to catch the 5 breakaway riders. There was one small climb left with 25km to the finish which would shake up the main peloton. The pace was high and I'd say 15 riders got shelled, leaving approximately 25 riders to battle it out for 6th... I was pleased to be hanging in there and in contention for a top 10 placing.
We'd been riding hard for 15km after the final climb, then with 10km to go one rider attacked and went clear. I just didn't have the legs, but on reflection had I managed to go with that rider then I'd have been incredibly happy... but it wasn't to be, and the main peloton of approximately 25 riders sprinted it out for 7th with myself finishing 10th in the bunch gallop and 16th overall.
A day to remember, but just slight disappointment not having the legs with 10km to the finish and a possible 6th place... but that's cycling!
Thanks again for all your kind words and wishes of support, it's much appreciated.