Well I finally bit the bullet and did my first crit on the weekend, sort of…
I’ve wanted to do a crit for a while now, but for various reasons (other sporting/ social commitments, too much wine drinking the night before, not enough training etc) I never got around to it.
At this stage, I don’t ride anywhere near as much as I need/want to, but I thought if I don’t do it now I never will. So, on Sunday morning I stumbled out of bed and, after realising that I was running late, scoffed some toast and jumped on the bike to get down to Port Melbourne for the SKCC crits. Riding from Elsternwick to Port Melbourne I was astounded by the large numbers of riders out – I figured that ATBID must have brought them out in droves. Due to me running late, I had to ride really hard just to get down there in time, to the point where I was really tired when I arrived.
I chatted with the woman at the registration desk, who suggested that I take out a 3 ride pass thingy which I did. I ended up being put into E grade because a) I had never raced before and b) I couldn’t wait around until D grade as I had to play touch football back at Elwood at 9:30am.
As I toed the start line, the massive field of 2 (yep, that’s right 2) had a chat with each other, and a guy from SKCC that was to ‘baby-sit’ us through the ‘race’. Despite there being only two of us, plus our guardian angel, I had a great time. We got taught some of the tactics, how to deal with various corners (off camber etc), and choosing appropriate lines, even how to deal with being overtaken by another grade when the A + B grade women when flying by. We learnt about doing turns, holding wheels, hiding in the gutter and so on, all the while my HR was going through the roof! After 25mins (or thereabouts I think) we had 3 laps to go, and shared the work (trying to keep the womens grade in view which we did), for 2 of the laps them, then we went side by side for the last lap and had a sprint for the finish which was painful but fun. I even ended up getting my HR up to 190bpm
I really can’t wait to try D grade, although I doubt I’d hang on for long as it looked to my like they were flying along! Still, somebody has to come last don’t they
I can’t recall the name of the guy from SKCC who looked after us, but I’d like to say thanks if you’re out there as I learnt so much and had a great time doing it. I’ll definitely be back!
There was a guy taking photos of the riders, but I don’t know where, or if, they’d get posted on the net anywhere. I had a look at the SKCC site I couldn’t see any results or photos.
I couldn’t stay around to watch more of the other grades due to having to play touch, so I jumped on the bike and, with the help of a stiff tailwind, got back to Elwood just in time to play. My legs were dead during the game, and felt worse afterwards. Ended up passing out that afternoon on the coach, weary, but very happy.