British Cycling XC Nationals RD.4 – Cannock Chase
My home race is one I always look forward to, family, friends come to watch, it always gives you that little bit extra and as we know, extra in XC racing can really help!
I practiced the course on Saturday and honestly, I was a little disappointed in the layout, for me Cannock is about the rock garden and with this feature missing, it was a little shock to the system. However, as always the course is the same for all, so we just get on with what is presented to us.
Sunday arrived, I felt good, the weather had gone a little moody, but it was perfect for race day, the temperature had dropped and a little bit of overnight rain helped the course, it had given the loose surface a little more grip, I found the course way better and really enjoyed the changes.
I warmed up as normal and headed off to gridding, it is always nice to see the girls I am racing against, and we had a chat and a giggle before we call up.
I lined up on front row and awaited the start, the commissionaire blew the whistle, I got a good jump and clipped in quickly but my legs just did not want to play the XC game, I rounded the first turn in fourth, not shocking but not anywhere near my normal quick starts.
For the first part of the lap I chased hard, relaxed and allowed my legs to arrive to the situation, on the first climb I made a quick pass into 3rd and got my head down, the lead 2 had pulled away a bit, I just tried to attack the course the best I could. As we entered the event area for the first time I had closed about a 5-second gap to second, I made a quick pass on one of the few overtaking spots and quickly entered the next single track section to avoid any attack, at this point, I could not see the leader.
I crossed the finish line to start my second lap; there was a 22 gap to first place. I rode my own race, attacked the course and to my surprise the leader was in view. I continued to push and as we started the third lap I made a pass for the lead, we rode together for the final lap, I tried my hardest to put a bit of a gap between us. On the final climb I was out sprinted, I crossed the finish line in second, my best result at a national and although the win was so close, I was mega happy with my result.
Big thank you to everyone who supports me, next event is Woody’s bike park Cornwall 25th & 26th June.
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Thanks for reading.
Mazie Moo Moo
Photo credit sharperfoto