marble, roundabouts and racing. Chuck in Nandos and a very ‘local’ hotel and you’ve got the Milton Keynes 2 day race. Don’t get me wrong, we all had a blast. Its just that well, Milton Keynes is a bit shit isn’t it?
Organised by TeamMK at the Milton Keynes bowl the weather blessed us and it was going to be a good weekend of racing. It started with a very short 3km time trail. New lesson learned, 3km time trails suck! We did pretty good, I came in 8th with George in 12th and Rudy and Daniel not too far behind.
This led a little time to wait before the crit scheduled at 3pm. Not much food about at the venue and we were hungry so George, Rudy and I smashed back a bacon and egg bap from the only food vendor which was a burger van. It wasn’t really what we wanted, but it was pretty good. A couple of locals in the queue laughed at me, stating ’proper athlete this one’, I could only shrug and smile in retaliation.
The crit was good, fast paced with a lot of attacking. I managed a breakaway for a bit, got pulled back in and then the attack went that stuck to the end. We missed it and spent most of the rest of the race trying to organise the front into chasing properly which ultimately failed and we lost 40 seconds. The last lap was a bit of a nightmare as we were lapping a large group of riders who had been mistakenly given the last lap board as well which meant that no-one moved and there was an inevitable crash (this was caused by someone, number 73, dropping a shoulder and riding into some poor lad who hit the tarmac like a sack of spuds). Ended up coming in the top ten with George close behind to secure my GC position in the top ten also.
The next day started early in the countryside for a 90km road race in the morning fog. It was great fun, although at one point I was pretty sure I’d lost it all. I punctured at about 50km in just as I was in a good move off the front. Hand up and pedalling slowly, the bunch and my team mates fly past, I heard George shout in protestation at my bad luck. It was gutting and I was sure then that GC and the race were over for me. God bless neutral service. After a quick wheel change I spent the next half an hour pedalling like mad at 60kph behind a BMW estate being dragged back to the field. It was amazing but also properly exhausting, its not easy. I was back in the pack for the last 20km and just had to focus on staying up at the front and setting myself up for the sprint. Going cross eyed with the effort I was praying that around every corner the 1km to go sign would appear. When it finally did Rudy was on the front looking back at me. I knew he wanted to lead me out, he was ready and he’d got it fucking perfect. I nodded and Rudy dropped the hammer. The bunch dragged out into that familiar arrowhead with me 4th wheel. Rudy pulled off with 400 to go, a few riders in front meant I could hold back and at about 100 to go I let it loose.
There was another breakaway which had stuck that day and I came in 7th overall. Leaving me with 9th on GC. The team did a great job and having Rudy up the front in that last KM was one of the best race experiences I’ve had. Chapeau boys and thank you.