Racing has been a bit quiet for me in the month of July, with just the National 100 and the Shaftesbury CC 50 Saturday just gone, the idea being to get a good solid block of training in that will stand me in good stead for the rest of the season. But this 50 was an event I couldn’t miss if I want a good result in this year’s BBAR. The start sheet confirmed this with a high quality field hoping for a fast day on the course based at Newmarket. With former BBAR and 50 mile record holder Andy Wilkinson riding as well as Bowdler, Bason, Wainman, Jenkinson, Topham, Berry and plenty more with LTS times below 1.45 this was going to be some race and the first real big marker for the BBAR.
The weekend before on this course had seen a very good day with some super quick times for 25 miles and everybody was hoping we would be blessed with the same, without doubt it’s the best conditions I have raced in this year, but then that’s not saying much lol, After a little panic of getting to the start on time I arrived with a good 8 minutes to spare and called myself all sorts of names for stressing for no reason, long way to go though to miss your start! Wasn’t long before I rolled away from the start aboard my fixed wheel, gear of choice was 55×13, about 112″ started fairly brisk but not mad and settled down to the first turn after around 4 miles, coming back out of the turn though and my minute man was either having a super day or had started quite hard, pressure was on! so I cracked on and nailed it all the way to the far turn where I hoped to be in a better position.
Checking the garmin download later on, 10miles passed by in 19.30, 25miles in 48.35 so even though I didn’t know at the time I was going pretty well. Though using people as checks on the road was not really helping, looking back I think I judged the gaps badly, my minute man had dropped back but not by much and Topham looked to be going very well and had me thinking he was a couple of minutes up! Still I had the positive of closing in on my 5 minute man so set about the task of going hard all the way back. What wind there was made itself felt on the return leg so I was very pleased to reach the final turn and smash the last 5 miles with a tailwind, getting it all out!
Took me a while to potter back to the HQ, it’s at times like this that I think gears maybe a good idea…once back to the car and soaking myself with cold water I heard that Wilko had done a 1.36!!!! i was like Wow!! that’s quick, it sounded as though a lot of people had done PBs so I headed in to see the damage, I just missed a sub 1.40 last year with a 1.40.08 so my worried look soon turned to pretty mega chuffed when I read my time of 1.38.56! Wilko had indeed done a 1.36.37 and Topham was up on me and finished with a 1.38.06, these were the only three rides inside 1.40 but there was quite a few from the other big hitters that got close.
So thats a decent 50 time for the BBAR and top tip of the day was from Wilko who told me to get a proper bike! one with gears! a triple chainset he said…..lol