Wednesday, 29 June 2016

RAS de Cymru: Stage 1 - TTT

It's that time of year again, the RAS de Cymru. I did this last year, and it was brutal, so obviously I was keen to head to Wales and be back again this year to experience that 5 day, 6 stage race pain. Riding again for London Phoenix we had a strong team of Richy Pointer, Simon Johnson and guesting due to Martin's injury, Ross Hallard (plus me).

Stage one, much like last year was a TTT. t was however a different course, slightly shorter at 8.5km and on faster A roads. Unfortunately as a team we hadn't even ridden together let along practiced any TT techniques, so we were going into this a bit blind. We didn't drive the course before, and due to the pretty damp conditions, we we not going to ride it either...

3 minutes to go and we were waiting in the layby. pretty wet, and pretty unsure just how we'd go. I was first rider off, with instructions to ease into the pace. Straight away we hit a problem as Simon, who was second man, could't clip in, there was a 10-15ft gap between me and the guys, so I slowed up for them to rejoin. Back on, and we wound up the pace, typically taking 30 second turns, although I'll be honest, I couldn't really see or read my Garmin through the rain...

We were working together well though as we came upto the first of two roundabouts around 3.5km in I took these fairly steady, perhaps too steady? I don't know, but I certainly didn't want to come off. Onto teh second roundabout and I was 3rd wheel, I let a gap form, perhaps costing us a second? Sprinting back onto Richy & Ross and it was back down the A48 toards the finish. I was feeling pretty strong and doing some good turns. The hills, headwind and water were all a bit sapping on the way back, perhaps loosing a few seconds here, difficult to know really. Final push and Ross was on the front for 30 seconds driving the pace, we finished strong and all finished together which was great.

Me on the front. Good line.

Ross & Richy. Me, chasing.

Our time was 11:41 which has placed us 11th (26 teams) Winning time was 11:04, which was pretty rapid, albeit not surprising given one of their riders is Rich Bussell.

Stage 2 tomorrow is a hilly circuit and a hill top finish. I punctured on the first lap last year and lost valuable time, so i'm keen for that to not happen again.

As always, great organisation by the BC comms, organisers and marshals, thanks!

No comments:

Post a Comment