Tuesday, January 25, 2011

alpine classic washup

Well what a weekend, bloody awesome weekend of bike related activities. We headed up to Bright with the goal of tackling the 200km Alpine Classic. Needless to say it was a challenge beyond my ability this year.
We headed up Friday and getting away late after catching up with my Aunty who was out for the US for the Aus Open Tennis meant that it was unachievable to get out on the bike on Friday arvo. Who cared it was so nice to be away in the hills.
Saturday I hooked up with Aaron and his crew for a pedal out along the Buckland Valley at the base of Mt Buffalo which was awesome but the weather was hot and tropical in nature. Covered a lazy 50kms and managed to flat at the end which was a little disappointing.
Gav and his wife joined us for the weekend and arrived Saturday arvo so we headed to the Bright Brewery for a few beers and checked out the event HQ which had a lot of various stalls all directed towards cycling. Assos was doing a brisk trade with some of their kit at very reasonable prices.
After messing with my flat and discovering that my other set of wheels had a nice cut in them from my journey out to Nutfield the other week there was some swapping of tyres and sorting out of the bike for the events of the next day.
Sunday rolled around and after a early night, big dinner and a good sleep I felt not to bad. Breakfast was demolished and once kitted up we headed out to the start. Perfect overcast conditions greeted us with some cool air for the first few hours. We rolled to the start and decided not to weight for the 0640 start and jumped in between groups.
I had committed myself to ride with in my heart rate range and not push it too much as I knew that once into the red it is where it would stay. The Tawonga climb came and went and I felt okay at the top and enjoyed the descent and rolled into the refuel stop at Mt Beauty. After a quick refuel and a few snacks we made our way up to Falls Creek. I lost contact with Gav on this climb and never caught him again apart from him going down the descent and passing me as I was near the top of Falls Creek.
I was amazed at the unskilled descending and saw a few people who had came to grief on the Falls Creek rd. One guy was laid out in a neck brace on the Mt Mckay intersection that has a ripper of a sweeper.
Once I got back to Mt Beauty after some awesome fun descending I then had to tackle my arch nemesis, the back side of Tawonga Gap. I have never had a good history with this climb, even with all the Tour of Bright's and other times I had been riding in the area, this was my achilles heal.
By now the heat was getting oppressive for me, and the climb was nasty. This is where my day began to unwind. I struggled big time and the climb just wore me down. I tried to roll within my goal heart rate but it was not to be. I was in struggle town.
Once I crested the climb I rolled the descent to recover, well aware that many people have binned it coming down when tired, needless to say one sole did and was over the edge with ambo's in attendance.
I was feeling less than great but rolled into the lunch stop and thought that if I demolished some more food on top of my energy bars that I had been eating I could get through the last 60 kms. I left the lunch stop feeling better, but by the time I had tapped my way out to the Buckland River on the way to Mt Buffalo my body just shut down. I ground my way back to Bright and rolled into the event finish and hung it up for the day.
So some 2400mtrs of climbing over 145kms I was not to disappointed. I had achieved something I was happy with given the limited training I did due to life's other responsibilities.
Gav smashed it and conquered the whole 200km and looked pretty fresh at the end. We celebrated with a pint of beer at the Brewery in the shade recounting stories of the day.
Aaron I think finished the 250km big loop, last I heard he was somewhere between Omeo and Falls Creek.
Me, well I will line up next year for sure as it is a great event. I will now target some other events for the year beginning next month with the GMBC Crazy 6.
Happy trails!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

counting down

Here we are a few days out from the Alpine Classic, the attempts at getting prepared are done. Doing a so called taper week, got out a few times since Saturday as I ended up with a forced week of rest because of Melburn's average weather. I was wrapped to finally get out on the big wheeler yesterday and reintroduce myself to the simple pleasure of the SS. Some of the trails are really overgrown from all the warm rain of this summer. I was glad to see that some nice person's had taken the chainsaw and brushcutter to some local trails and really cleaned em out so now you can rip it. Been a few years since she (the trail) was this clean and fun. I had such a ball riding the SS yesterday, just tapping it over rolling and revisiting trails I had not seen for a few months.
Not really that nervous about Sunday, going to treat it as a big training ride, not race anyone and just tap out a comfortable tempo. 200kms on the flat with a few rollers is enough to hurt most but when you add in 3 decent bergs to climb over it is going to be a test. I must remember to enjoy the view to trick the mind into having fun!

I think I will be seeing this sign a few times come Sunday on my way over from Bright and on the way back from Mt Beauty!

Not much else going on, looking at a few races for the first part of the year starting with the Crazy 6 next month. Just going to try and get one race done a month as this should fit in with work and family commitments.
I am still struggling to get my front tubeless on the geared 29er to stay up. Driving me a little mental, moral to the story by a UST system. I will give it 1 more decent crack and then if it doesnt work, back to tubes!
Watch the twitter feed for some shots and comments on Sunday!
Happy trails!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Nationals done and dusted

Fun day out in the country with Mooter. We ended up being the 2nd feeders for Team Sky and it makes the day go a little quicker when you have to be on the side of the road ready to feed.
Break went early with the main contender being Bobridge. He managed to stay away even with Sky ripping it and putting it on the line for Gerro. Despite chasing hard Gerro's group could only get within 30 seconds of Bobridge who sailed solo into the finishing straight for the win. Gerro lined up for the sprint as was pipped on the line by Goss for second in a five man group. So bronze for Gerro this year, wicked ride on a tough day at the office.

Me, I have been getting out there in the hils a bit on the road. Two weeks to go until the Alpine Classic. Getting a little nervous about it but hopefully the next 2 days on the bike will give me a indication when I get some longer rides done.
Looking at the calendar for MTB events and my work schedule I am targeting a few of the Vic Enduro Series.
I have been struggling to get my tubeless 29er tyres sorted as since spontanously deflating, getting them and the rim to mesh has been a fuckn nightmare. Next time I will be buying a UST system that does not require rim strips or tapes!
So no dirt time lately, maybe a short one later today!
Happy trails

Friday, January 7, 2011

My tip for Sunday is....

You guessed it.... its Gerro, can not go past a mate in good form and he is due a big result. I will be there cheering him on and the having some fun in the sun!
Should be a good day out and hopefully something to party about later that day!