PDCC - Casuarina Race Report

I've been meaning to go to a PDCC road race for a number of weeks now, so I thought it was about time to get off my ass and actually go. This weeks was a lovely seven laps of a 9ish km course in Casuarina. Lovely weather for it too. I decided to chuck myself into B grade, cos thats where all the cool kids were hanging out.

With 15 of us setting out, the first few laps were pretty tame. A couple of attacks here and there, nothing too threatening. We dropped a couple of riders somewhere along the line. The action started just after crossing the start/finish to commence the 4th lap. The pace was right up and someone in the middle of the bunch decided to start going a little bit off vertical (tyre rub?). I don't really know what happened next, it all went by really fast. I think the first guy knocked someone else over and it went from there, domino style. Dave has a lot better write-up of the incident than this! Unfortunately someones handlebars got lodged in his nice new rear wheel. Luckily neither he or the bike was badly damaged.

Those not involved in the crash waited for a little bit to see if anyone was going to jump back into the race. I thought I saw Dave making a dramatic comeback, but it turned out to be a Cat C or D rider. Anyway the pack (now at 8 riders) was back together and off we went. The next 2 laps were reasonably docile, I know I was a bit worried about a repeat of the crash.

Things started to heat up on the last lap. The pace increased a bit. Toby told me to keep an eye out for Jelly Belly man (there were jelly beans on his jersey) as he was looking pretty strong. Halfway around the lap another rider was dropped. Soon after the guy in the pinkish jersey and his mate had a crack at breaking away from the rest of us, but to no avail. I found myself at the front of the pack with Toby and I thought, if it comes down to a bunch sprint I'm not going to do too well (with my little legs). A little hill was coming up so I thought I'd give it a crack and break away up the hill, and then somehow make it to the line before everyone else. So I took off up the hill and down the other side. After a few hundred meters I saw the pack was gaining on me, so I got up out of the seat and had a bit more of a go at it. I reached the last corner and almost clipped some traffic furniture going around it. Got up out of the seat again to get down the finishing straight. I had a look around me and the bunch had backed off a little. I was pretty sure I had it in the bag then. I didn't let up though just to make sure. Crossed the line to grab first place! YAY! Toby outmatched everyone in the sprint to grab second. 1st and 2nd for SPR, pretty nifty!

Highlight: Looking around on the finishing straight and knowing that they weren't going to catch me.
Lowlight: The crash. I was pretty lucky to avoid it.


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