I’m sure a lot of you have already heard how tough this race was. Well let me add my bit. After last years event, we all knew about the hills in the area and when you start at the beach and finish in the hinterlands there is no avoiding riding a lot of up hill. I’m sure race organizers received a lot of feedback from last year stating how hard the hill were etc, but rather than taking the easy road and making the event a little easier, they made a tactical decision to make the course harder and the rain added fuel to this fire.
My race was going well, riding with the leading bunch feeling comfortable until about the 25-30min mark when I started to find the relentless climbing too much for my legs. I started suffering cramps from the 2 hour mark onwards, this made me made the decision to cruse the fire road climbs and have fun in the single track, hoping this would not smash my legs too much as I need them for the Dusk to Dawn 12 hour in Queensland next weekend. The riding in this area is extraordinary. I was having a ball throwing the bike around on the soggy trails. Lucky for me I ditched the fast racing tyres for some mud one an hour before the race started.
By the time I had reach the oval for the first time at the 65km mark I was pretty shagged but still having fun in the condition well suited to a true mountain biker. With the help of a couple of Rohin Adams buddies (thanks heaps Jo and Andréa), I was refueled and heading back out for some more fun. By the final 13km stage I stopped trying to chase anyone and was happy to hold my position, however I did catch up to Tinker on the last slop fest of climb, he had suffered a slashed tyre and looked as though the race had taken it out of him. All in all I was happy with my finishing place of 26th and with a bit of luck will have the soreness out of my legs by the Dusk to Dawn this Saturday night.
This is a bad pic of the start, the riders took about 5minutes to pass this point only 500m from the start line.
Worthy of a mention is Adrian Jacksons 5th place and Rohin Adams (pictured) 11th place.