Peaks Challenge Falls Creek

Finishers jersey

It’s more than just a jersey

We know how much it means to you. It symbolises months of training, time away from family and friends, dedication, pain and commitment. It’s every early-morning wake up, grinding pedal stroke, bead of sweat and sleepless night. It tells the world that you went to the depths of suffering, and came out triumphant. Its significance is something only a fellow Peaks Challenge finisher can understand.

#peaksfinisher

Cyril Dixon

Peaks Challenge finisher Cyril
What training did you do in the lead up to the event?

I completed a 12-week program building up to the event. For three weeks I would ride 12-14 hours with tow to three rides at very high intensity, including a long ride to Kinglake from Melbourne. Every fourth week was treated as a recovery week, spending about eight hours on the bike. This would usually get me around 1250km of riding per month.

For some mental conditioning I rode up Mt Baw Baw at least once to prepare me for the back of Falls Creek, Mt Hotham once (it is a brute of a climb) and at least one 200km ride with a couple of climbs to get used to what it feels like to be out riding all day.

How did you feel at the start line?

I always feel a bit nervous at the start line. I was keen to get started and make it to Bogong and then the Tawonga Gap climb – I was just hoping I wouldn’t get any mechanicals and to stay out of trouble!

What surprised you most on the ride?

Knowing these climbs so well I was amazed at how many riders where doing this event and pushing themselves beyond their limits. It’s great achievement.

What’s your strongest memory of the support?

I always marvel at the logistics of making the lunch stop work – great stuff from the volunteers! They’re always encouraging, Peaks Challenge wouldn’t happen without them. 

What was running through your head as you hit the final climb?

I hate this climb … last big effort … 45 minutes to the top … It’s not Mt Baw Baw … I haven’t busted myself up the previous climb so I should be ok … just two steep ramps to Trapyard Gap … stand up, keep going straight … It’s not Mt Baw Baw … last ramp… it’s not Mt Baw Baw … Trapyard Gap, I hate this bit around to the reservoir!

Peaks Challenge finisher Cyril

The finishers jersey makes it all real, I completed Peaks Challenge and no one can take that away.

Peaks Challenge finisher Cyril
What were your emotions when you crossed the finish line?

When I crossed the line I was just happy to finish comfortably within my time goal. It’s so good seeing others achieve their goals and finish – it creates a great atmosphere. I was proud to have finally ticked of such an iconic ride.

What does the finishers jersey mean to you?

The finishers jersey makes it all real, I completed Peaks Challenge and no one can take that away. I’m inspired to improve my time next time I do Peaks Challenge, and see how much faster I can go if I push myself out of my comfort zone even further.

#peaksfinisher

Fats Tajbhai

Peaks Challenge finisher Fats
What training did you do in the lead up to the event?

I mixed up the training with long endurance rides incorporating lots of climbing at the weekends. During the week it was indoor sessions focusing on strength and mobility. I had signed up for the 7 peaks before Peaks Challenge and that really helped with getting the vertical metres into the legs.

How did you feel at the start line?

Mostly, I was really excited. The buzz, the vibe, the energy was electric. All the riders – young, old waiting to start was great. I was a little nervous too about what lay ahead of me and the epicness of what I had committed to.

What surprised you most on the ride?

How quickly time can pass at the rest stops, and it all adds up!

What’s your strongest memory of the support?

The wave leaders were introduced to us the day before the ride and they were really inspiring, friendly and approachable. Also, the encouragement to keep going from the volunteers on the road and at rest stops always helps when you need an extra boost!

What was running through your head as you hit the final climb?

Well, they don’t call it WTF corner for nothing! I knew it was going to be tough but I was telling myself to trust the training. My hydration and nutrition had been good and just being around so many other riders at this point was really encouraging.

Peaks Challenge finisher Fats

“It was one of the most rewarding moments I’ve experienced on the bike.”

Peaks Challenge finisher Fats
What were your emotions when you crossed the finish line?

Sheer joy and sheer relief from knowing that I had done it, I had achieved my goal, the training had paid off, and I could celebrate! It was one of the most rewarding moments I’ve experienced on the bike.

What does the finishers jersey mean to you?

I’m really proud of my jersey. To me it symbolises focus, hard work, and dedication. When I see others in the jersey out on the road I have so much respect for the wearer because I know it represents taking on and completing a major challenge. It’s no easy feat!

#peaksfinisher

Daniel Frawley

Peaks Challenge finisher Danny
What training did you do in the lead up to the event?

I had a solid year on the bike in the lead-up to Peaks Challenge, I had being doing some club races early in the year and traveled to France for a cycling holiday. In France I was able to tick off many of my bucket list climbs while building my fitness base. The trip and racing wasn’t done with Peaks Challenge in mind, but when I decided to do Peaks it definitely helped, especially as I was struck down with the flu (real flu, not man-flu!) a month before the event.

How did you feel on the start line?

Rolling up to the start line I was excited. I would usually feel nervous ahead of a big event but the sun was shining and the thought of spending the whole day on the bike doing something I loved, plus the atmosphere, built my anticipation.

What surprised you most on the ride?

The views and scenery. It was stunning when I had the opportunity to take them in.

“I got to experience what it meant to the riders to give them your support and to ride for them”

What’s your strongest memory of the support on event?

As lanterne rouge I got to experience what it meant for riders to give them support. Some people were disappointed at first if they saw the lanterne rouge coming, but we’re there to help, not cut them off. Our goal was to get everyone home in time and we had a good bunch of riders that we helped get to the finish.

What was running through your head as you hit the final climb?

I had heard how hard it was, everyone was talking about it, but I didn’t believe them until I hit it. There are only two speeds you could go up the hill. Slow, or walking, and I wasn’t going to walk. There were plenty of people that were!

Peaks Challenge finisher Danny
Peaks Challenge finisher Danny
What were your emotions when you crossed the finish line?

I became a little emotional when I got within sight of the finish and realised I was going to make it. It’s such a rewarding ride and there’s something special about riding through that finish arch. Knowing that all those climbs were behind me, that I’d just completed my biggest day on the bike and now I could stop and soak it in for a while was a great personal moment.

What does the finishers jersey mean to you?

I’ve always seen other people wearing thier finishers jersey, especially in the weeks after Peaks Challenge. Ever since I started cycling it’s been something I’ve wanted to get my hands on. It’s a nice reward at the end of a truly challenging ride, and I love that you join an exclusive finishers club – it’s a jersey money can’t buy.

Peaks Challenge 2019 early bird first release entries are now open!

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