The day before my race, I was hydrating and ensuring I had lots of food in my reserves. Woke up on race day to hear the sound of rain, I know everybody hates that sound but not me I was actually excited to race in the wet greasy conditions.
Got to event village about an hour before start just in time for a warm up, in fact it wasn't even a warm up because I was "freezing" literally, anyway found some hills to warm up on but hills have one problem once you go up you have to come down and when you come down you freeze.
Anyway got on the start line as usual but still shivering and covered in goose bumps. The gun went off, actually the pace at the start was fairly relaxed but as soon as we hit the tarseal road climb attacks started happening. Everybody was sprinting to get to the single track first, anyway I got swamped and ended up about 10th into the first single track.
As per usual I just decided to run the first technical climb because hopping on and off wastes energy. I got to the main climb and I looked up only to find the leaders were nearly at the top. This was a tester for the legs which still weren't warm probably down to the fact that I was freezing during my warm up.
As I entered the main single track I reckon I was already a minute behind the leader lying in 9th position. My decent was sluggish and rough I just couldn't ride smooth with all the greasy rocks and steps.
I was riding past the feed zone when someone called out 1min 30s behind I was shocked that I thought I was going fast but really I was slow. Second lap was better my pace didn't slow much and I was gaining on an Auzzie and two kiwis.
Third lap my legs felt better, I went past the Auzzie and overtook George and James (both Kiwis). About 30seconds after I went past them I heard some yelling, turns out it was George with a puncture. I got to the top of the climb and I decided to try and make some time on 5th and 4th place who I could still se so I tried pushing it a little more on the downhill, I entered a wooden bridge (slippery walking track bridge with no chicken wire) carrying too much speed tying to do a 45degree turn, front wheel wiped out and I ended up kissing the
Once I got back up and riding again I heard some brakes behind me it was James Williamson I must have lost about 15seconds coming off.
I followed James through the start finish area and he also came off. We were flying on a path when James went to bunny hop this log of wood but he didn't lift his front wheel higher enough and he ended up flat on his face. Fourth lap it started to hurt on the climbs and they were getting muddier and the descents were more like streams of water flowing everywhere. The climbs seemed to get steeper and the descent more technical.
Last lap, I was in 6th but the frustrating thing was I could see Conor (kiwi rider) who was absolutely flying and the Auzzie a little bit behind him but I just couldn't make up any ground. My legs were dead and I just couldn't go any
I ended up finishing sixth in a time of 1:56mins Nearly 7mins down to winner Paul Van Der Ploeg.I am happy to finish 2nd Kiwi and I now know the pace of competing at the next level, I will sure train harder next year.
Special thanks to:
*and of course PNP
Under 19 Men
1 601 Paul Van Der Ploeg (AUS, Felt Bicycles, SRAM, Hutchinson) 1:50:06.1
2 606 Nathan Haas (AUS, Orbea Australia, Actas ) 1:51:52.1
3 604 Peter Braunsteins (AUS, Richmond cyclery ) 1:52:32.0
4 610 Conor MacFarlane (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 1:54:13.1
5 607 Benjamin Dyball (AUS) 1:55:49.3
6 613 Jordan Blake (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 1:56:56.1
7 609 James Williamsonnz (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 1:58:52.2
8 603 Daniel Hallam (AUS, Greg Swain (Coach).Advance Traders.Merida.Nerang Mountain Bike Club) 1:59:33.7
9 611 Scott Green (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 1:59:40.9
10 615 Alex McGregor (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 2:00:37.5
11 605 Luke Knox (AUS, Bendigo Bank Academy of Sport Villawood ) 2:03:02.7
12 602 Robbie Hucker (AUS, Cannondale maxxis mountain bike racing team , sram,sugoi,enervit,giro) 2:03:44.2
13 612 Ashley Hough (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 2:04:23.4
14 616 Jonathan Coates (AUS) 2:05:45.9
15 608 Jarrad Burrell (AUS, Kalamunda Cycles ) 2:08:18.5
16 614 George Bennett (NZL, Bike New Zealand ) 2:13:08.4