By Tommy Bustard
Some races go your way and some don’t. A combination of luck, hard work and racing awareness always helps to get you result. Sometimes though a bit of bad luck is dealt out as well. There were some mixed fortunes for me today.
It was a nice hot day, and the weather was great for racing. The race started off fast like they normally do, there was no gradual warm up before the attacks, it was straight out of the traps and hard efforts from the flag. For the first five minutes I was not feeling great as the pace was set fast so was sat in at the back of the bunch. As my legs got used to the pace and my heart rate in a steady rhythm, I started to feel a lot more comfortable. The moment I felt really good, I hit the bunch and I was away solo for about 10 minutes with nobody chasing at first.
This early on they were not going to let me stay away, and a lad from Nuun-Sigma Sport joined me with another rider. They were two good honest lads, doing their fair share of the work to try to keep away. After a time we dropped the second lad as the pace was a bit too tough. This was a shame for him and for us as we lost one third of the fire power in the breakaway, so it was just me and the Nuun-Sigma Sport rider having to work hard to keep away. We got a one minute lead and stayed away for an hour. There were a determined bunch chasing us down and eventually we got caught.
This was never going to be the end of my race though. I stayed in the bunch for about 2 minutes to give my legs a little bit of a rest, and then I hit them again and got away with a lad called George Fox. The chasers had previously done a lot of work to bring me back in and were tired so were not doing much more to bring me and George back. We worked well and got a big gap of nearly two minutes.
Then my bad luck came in. Part way into the race on a descent I got notified by the commissaries of a disqualification for resting on my top tube in an aero tuck position. I couldn’t believe it. I would of 100% at least got second and in the form I was reckon I’d of won. So I got asked to stop the race which I did and cycled back to the HQ. As well as me being in disbelief, so were the other competitors. People couldn’t believe what had happened. I tried talking to the commissar at the end who disqualified me but she was rude and unsympathetic. She said I had my hands off the bars which I actually didn’t, I was just in an aero tuck.
It was a real shame because I was going well. The mixed fortunes mentioned earlier….you could argue there was only bad fortune. The good fortune to me is obvious. I felt great, I was in full control, got in the breaks and dominated the race. Usually in a race like this you get a good measure of where you need to be at for your next race, and I know exactly where I am at.
Many thanks to the organisers, Glendene CC