Tuesday, 16 March 2010

WMAS Combined Scratch Race

My god! What a race!! The scratch at MCOW against international riders wasn’t as nuts as this race on Sunday. It was so full on, I have memory blanks, where my conscious thought process obviously shut down and I was working on pure gut reaction and in survival mode.

 Photo by Leanne Cole

The pace was on from the start, but that was ok. We rolled a few laps, settling in, waking up the race legs, then Princess Kaz rode off the front. I popped my head out to see why the bunch had fallen off her wheel, and waited for the bridge over. A lap later and Karen was still out in front and all hell broke lose. I don’t remember much of the next few laps. Apparently I jumped onto Megan and Janelle as they came past, but I don’t remember that. I remember about mid race, being dropped off a small bunch when they put in just one more kick, and clawing my way back on over the next lap or so. I hung on until 5 to go, when they kicked on, yet again. That was my first pop. Second pop came with two laps to go, and it was just a matter of finishing, with Megan and Karen in front of me for 1-2 in WMAS3. The field was completely ripped apart, with no chance of a bunch finish. Sue McCarthy dictated pace and rode a brilliant race, winning decisively, well clear of second placegetter Megan Marsh.

It was one of the toughest scratch races I have ridden. After two hard days riding and racing, it was a matter of survival. My ability to change up gears rapidly was shot, so I was limited in being able to go with attacks or sudden lifts in pace. I needed a motorbike to slowly wind up behind! But it was excellent racing, hard nasty scratch racing, and I think we proved a few punters wrong about how women race on Sunday afternoon.

 Photo by Leanne Cole

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