Hey darkie, hope your mate was ok. After I exited the race I came across the crash and saw him on the corner yelling out in pain. He looked in distress. Got his bike off the road and put his sunglasses in his back pocket, he just wanted the ambo's to help. Too many crashes today.
I was pissed off with how the C grade bunch didnt hold up when the crash happened. Making an unfair break because of a crash is unfair and unsportsmanlike. There were repeated yells to sit up and wait for the bunch to get back on, fortunately after the first crash most of the bunch got back on.
I spent a little bit of time in a 3 man breakway at the start that never gained more than 50 metres. They reeled us back quickly and I didnt have the legs to keep it up. HR was getting maxed, so dropped back the exertion to a reasonable level in the front 3rd of the bunch. I was in the middle of the bunch when the crash happened. We were overtaking D grade, I was concentrating on the action in front so didn't see too far ahead. Reports indicate that there was some argy bargy in D grade.
Saw a couple of guys go A over T and slammed on the brakes, lucky I don't like to have too powerful brakes or else I would have gone over too. Managed to keep it upright, it all happened so fast. You can see it occur at around 27:00 into the race. The front of the bunch took off like the clappers, so put myself in the Max HR again trying to catch up. That didnt take more than a few minutes and then concentrated on resting my HR again. Got it down to 160 which is reasonable and I was feeling great.
Dropped back in the bunch a bit to talk to Andy, asking him how he was feeling and mentioning that I was feeling great. I asked him for a lead out, he agreed and we tried to set it up. One of the older guys in the bunch started tutting and we turned around and he said "I don't think so guys, no team orders here" and had a little smile. Andy and I started pissing ourselves. He was behind Andy and there was no chance he would let me in. Passed the start finish line and Jeff yells out "C grade, 3 laps to go" into the microphone. I put the juice down as I was feeling great, and took off fromt he bunch. Didnt stop to look around until a bit later, and I had a comfortable lead. No one was chasing which I thought was strange. Turns out that Jeff meant to say D grade 3 laps to go. Confusion abounds. I did another lap by myself at the front, losing power and came around the second last corner and I hear Andy yelling out "You got one on your left, go go gogo go" like I've never heard him yell. Pushed harder and made it past the start finish line, but had to give up as had nothing left. Pootled around the corner, C grade lapped me and then I saw 4 guys on the ground at the last corner. Another crash. I stopped to clear debris off the road etc, and Darkies mate asked me to go and announce that he was needed down at the first corner.
A couple of other riders heard Jeff yell 3 laps to go, but didnt make their move obviously. Oh well, it's all part of racing. If I kept it in the tank until the last 1.5 laps I could have made it stick or at least contested the sprint. Fun times
Here is the HRM info. Spent a crazy 38:20min in Zone 5 (90-100%), tough race but felt pretty good.