Sunday, November 19, 2006
Just back from Rosyth docks cross race. Great course shimmied around an area of waste ground, car park and green belt. Winding slimey off camber singletrack and 2 steep climbs. Excellent stuff. Its always so good to ride in the least expected places and find it to be gruelling and fun all at the same time.
The race started very fast with a road flat and climb linking us all into the course. Obviously this favoured a geared rider and the Savalas Players were behind a morass of racers. The next section was the technical singletrack, which was obviously a challenge to some as there were men down everywhere. A few bursts of speed had me sitting in 14th or so, with Chris and Jac not far behind. The carpark and waste section ended in a set of steps, that if you timed well, you could just ride the left side of the steps, preventing a dismount and run - far faster.
From here the course climbed to it's highpoint through trees before a winding descent to the car park again. This was obviously a good spot to rev up and pass riders before the singletrack - where it was very difficult to pass. This I managed on a couple of occasions and after a relatively strong mid race (for me) I was up in tenth. I had lost touch with Chris who was suffering on his 32:18 on the relatively flat and fast course. Jac was leading the ladies, despite feeling a little under the weather.
My choice of the Seven with a 38:18 was paying dividends in that I was able to spin fast enough to not get dropped on the road section. Enjoying the swoopy technical stuff, and being au fait with the roots leaves and off camber corners allowed me to sit behind others and pressurise them before quick sprints to gap them. It worked well, and soon enough I was up in 8th.
At this point with around 10 minutes to go I caught the 7th placed rider, and sat on his wheel as he was racing cannily and I could not find the power for a pass. 2 laps whisked by and then the bell. Still I was sat behind and really needed a mistake on his behalf to make the pass, but it was not to be.
At the end there was a little confusion regarding the placings, and I'm still unclear whether I was 7th or 8th. Chris was a little back, but smiling since he had regained his jacket (it was so very very cold) and Jac took the win.
Best heckle goes to stalwart support Player Marty with 'eye of the tiger, bring it home'.
See naegears pics.