Robin Parker writes…
4th May. LVRC MSTina Series Round 2, Blackmore
Result = 5th, 3rd B Cat
I received some good news during the week. It appears that there was a mix up with the result from last week and I was in fact 3rd B Cat. So that was a bit of consolation for riding myself into the ground! And so on to MSTina Series Round 2 this week. Six and a bit laps of the Blackmore circuit in Essex for a total of 56 miles.
It was a beautiful bright sunny morning as the bunch rolled away. First lap skirmishes all came to nothing. Over the next couple of laps I decided to try and instigate something. I put in several efforts, but every time the moves were closed down pretty quickly. I sat back a little after that, paying fairly close order to the head of affairs – but far enough back to keep my nose out of the wind.
Today was just one of those days where the bunch seemed more inclined to close everything down rather jump and make a move. As we took the bell we were still “gruppo compacto” and I had decided that no matter how temping it might be to try something on the last lap, I was going to wait for the sprint. Of course, as everyone started to think about the sprint, 3 guys snuck off the front and although they dangled tantalizingly in front of the bunch we never got them back. Typical! But fair play – they took their chance well.
The run in to the yellow flag (200m to go) was a slightly uphill, a slight headwind and with a rough road surface. This dissuaded anyone from wanting to take it on and try for a long one and so the bunch fanned out from gutter to gutter – apart from a reluctant compression for some oncoming traffic! Much bumping and weaving and swearing ensued but fortunately everyone managed to stay upright (as far as I know!!) and I managed to maintain a reasonable position.
As we seemingly crept towards the yellow flag there was a flash of red from the right hand side as a Virgin Active rider jumped hard and early. I had been caught napping! He was gone. Damn. But this did stir everyone into action. I quickly distanced the rest of the bunch, but I was unable to close in on Mr Virgin Active. So 5th overall and 3rd B Cat. Not too bad a result. More pleasing was that I finished cramp-free; with good legs and that my finishing kick appears to be working order (just don’t get caught dozing next time!). Round 3 next week…