Surrey League – Longcross 2/3 Race

Since my last race I had a bit of a training blip, looking back at it now it was fairly obvious I was fatigued. I had been training pretty much non stop since the beginning of the year and so my ATL Was getting near a constant all time high and TSB was getting really low. All the training I was doing I was really struggling, and maintaining any sort of meaningful power was so difficult. So I decided to take a really easy week and just did around 3 hours of volume as opposed to my usual 8 or so hours.

This really helped and as soon as I went out this week on a ride I felt fantastic. I went out with a couple of Paceline guys on the usual winter training loop and I felt stronger than I ever have, although wished I’d done more on the front it was still good training. https://app.strava.com/activities/259880607

Took it easy the rest of the week before my biggest race year to date on Saturday at Longcross in Surrey. For anyone that doesn’t know,the circuit is based at an old MOD site, and is a car test track. It features a huge long straight, a very long sweeping left hander followed by several sweeping hairpins with some fairly strong elevation changes, which are quite challenging technically to get spot on each time. The lap culminates in a quick descent into a semi chicane, back on to the main straight.

So Saturday rolled round, and I started off the 23 mile journey to Longcross, I was slightly reticent to cycle all the way over as it meant quite a bit of use of the legs prior to the race which I wasn’t sure about. I met up with Gareth Thomas of Paceline in Kingston and we rode the rest of the way over together though. The weather was slightly warmer than it had been of late, but it was pretty constant drizzle which made it pretty grim. Got there spot on 10:15 and signed on and met up with a couple of other Paceline riders who were racing, Andy Lack, and Sam Andrews.

I’d borrowed a Paceline jersey as I’m still waiting for my kit order, so it felt cool to race in team colours for the first time! (Thanks Jim and Maryka for that!) We set off behind the lead car and the pace was immediately pretty high, I’d not ridden the course and was a bit nervous as to what was coming up, especially given the greasy conditions. I kept in the bunch the first lap and felt OK. The downhill into the chicane each lap was a bit of a sticking point with all of the riders forming a bit of a bottle neck, which would string out onto the main straight, meaning working hard to remain attached.

There was a strong headwind on the straight, so after pushing to keep attached the bunch eventually slowed into the wind and grouped back up before the end of the main straight. After the first couple of laps I felt comfortable on the circuit, with some of the corners quite enjoyable. Was glad to have fitted 25mm tyres earlier in the week though, which seemed to help with cornering confidence.

I just kept myself in the bunch and was happy to seemingly be able to take the pace, as well as being able to move up and down the group as needed. There was plenty of room on the circuit so it was fairly easy to move up the side. It seemed to me the best place to do this was using the downhills to carry more momentum than the bunch into the inclines, which helped moving forward. I did this a couple of times just to test, and ended up on/near the front into the main straight, also meant taking the chicane faster than the bunch too which helped onto the straight.

A break had gotten away from around 30mins in and stayed out, maintaining a 30-40 second gap to the bunch, but the gap began to come down as the laps got into the last 5, I was still feeling good by this point, and was hoping to get up near the front for the last time onto the main straight, but coming up one of the inclines out of the saddle, my chain missed a gear and I cycled half a revolution of air, my hamstring immediately felt odd but I kept with the bunch, half a lap later it still didn’t feel right so I stuck my hand up and threw in the towel. I’m off to Spain on a training camp so was worried of hurting myself prior to this.

I stood on the side and watched the sprint come in which was good to see, the lead guys looked absolutely rapid! Unfortunately for the break, they had been brought back in, and it was down to a full bunch sprint. Tried to pick out a couple of the Paceline guys and saw Gareth up near the front end of the bunch, with the other guys rolling in with the remainder of the bunch.

Had a chat to the guys after, then rolled back home, thankfully with a tailwind giving assistance which was much needed, ended up being a 90 mile day, by far the longest I’ve done for some time! Annoyingly the hamstring turned out to be fine, so probably needn’t have pulled in, but better safe than sorry I guess.

Overall, pretty happy with fitness and being able to keep up, could still do with dropping a few kg to make the climbs easier though. Glad to stay upright as well, as it was a bit sketchy at times. Saw one guy deck it on a corner which looked nasty, hope he was ok.  Next confirmed race is not until 12th April (Kirdford Surrey League 2/3 Race) but I’m hoping to get a waiting list space on the 29th March SL Alfold Circuit race. In the meantime, this time next week I’ll be in Spain riding hopefully!

Avg Power: 245w

NP: 263w

Avg Speed: 25.1mph

Strava: https://app.strava.com/activities/260994665

Hillingdon IWS E123 – Race 9 of 9 (First 3rd Cat race)

So after having been ill most of last weekend I was looking forward to getting some decent training in and giving my first race as a 3rd Cat a good go. I ended up taking Monday and Tuesday off training for further recovery. Then went out with Paceline and some KW guys for a winter loop session. These are pretty much an hour at threshold or just below, depending on where you sit in the pack. I felt ok, so did sit in a bit, but power was still up near 260w NP for the hour so it wasn’t an easy session. Did some sprints Thursday and set a couple of Power PRs in doing so which was good. Took Friday off in readiness for Saturday.

Woke up pretty early and got all my gear ready for the race, which is held an hour later than the 4ths so I had some more time to chill at home before swinging a leg over the saddle and spinning over to the circuit. The weather seemed decent at around 7 degrees it was way warmer than it had been the last few weeks, there wasn’t too much of a wind either. Eventually got over to the circuit in time to watch some of the 4ths race. Met up with Paul Moore from Paceline, and we had a chat about what to expect from the race. I’d been expecting the 3rds to race separately, but was told it was 1sts 2nds and 3rds in one race! After waiting around for what seemed like age, we set off out on the circuit for a couple of laps warmup. Legs felt decent by this point and I was ready as I’ll ever have been.

Just as we lined up for the start the heavens opened and it started absolutely pissing it down. Perfect. We set off and the pace was immediately high. I was pretty much straight away at the back, and don’t think I was ready for just how much power I needed to use to stay attached. About 4 laps in the pace kicked up a notch again and I was getting spat out the back. I tried in vain to pace back on but it was game over. Race over after 4 laps! I slowed and waited to get lapped to join the back of the pack, just to see if I could stay on-board to the end as a training session.

So I jumped back into the back of the pack, and into a mouthful of spray, and that was my race. I managed to stay in the bunch to the finish but at points I was still quite close to the limit. I needed over 400w just to stay with the bunch coming out of the last corner where it all strung right out. Then on the back section of the circuit as the small incline began, the pace would jump up then settle down again, which was hard to maintain.

All in all an average day. Average speed was up at 26.5mph for the hour, compared to around 23.5 for the 4th Cat races, which illustrates the speed difference! Not all bad though, good just to get a feel for it and as a training session with a couple of things to think about, which in no particular order are:

  • Warmup  – I’ve found in my 4th Cat races, the legs felt much better at the close of the races than I ever did at the start, probably due to having been adequately warmed up. In all the races to date I’ve ridden the 10 miles to the circuit, then got changed and sat down until the race, with a couple of laps before the race. Not a good warmup, so where the pace was sky-high from the off I wasn’t in a good place.
  • More w/kg – Still need to work on being more powerful (obviously) Also trying to drop a bit more weight, and am now close to 79kg, from c.85kg at the beginning of the year. So that’s going the right way but needs more work.
  • Being more aero – I’ve got broad shoulders and at my weight I’m about as aero as a brick shithouse, this isn’t helped by my bike either, which is essentially a sportive frame with a pretty huge head tube. I’m running a -17 degree stem which is slammed, but with a race specific frame I’m sure I can get lower/more aero.

The rest is just training I guess, and hopefully the rest will come.

I stuck around after the race for the prizegiving which was cool to see, there was a raffle too, and I managed to pick up a prize of some bike cleaning fluid which has been put to good use today. Both road and TT bikes got the treatment which was needed. The road bike rear derailleur had mud/grime clogging the bottom jockey wheel which must have been sucking up a few watts. So I’m vowing to be a bit more efficient at cleaning, especially pre race, as it’s just lazy otherwise, and I’m giving away free speed.

image1 (4)

Nice and clean!

The next few weeks.

I’ve got a week off racing next weekend before another 3rd Cat race at Longcross (on 28th Feb) as a part of the Surrey League which I’m looking forward to, less of a crit as its much more distance, and it’ll be a new circuit which is good, as I’m just about sick of Hillingdon. Its a 2/3 race so I’m sure it will be equally fast though. I’m then off on a training camp on the 7th March to Alicante, so really looking forward to pretending to be a pro for a week, and getting out in some sunshine hopefully. Should be able to get some big volume, and plenty of climbing which will make for good training!

KW Sporting 14 Time Trial

My first proper CTT time trial, only done a racing circuit event before this.

Training had been going pretty well in the run up to this on the 8th Feb. I’d gotten out for a mid week training loop which was pretty hard work, and I’d even managed an hour interval at sweet spot round RP on the TT bike in prep. The weather was looking good as well so I was all set to give it a good bash. That is until I decided to go out on Friday night with a friend for a couple of drinks… We ended up wandering round half of London and in between bars I was getting seriously cold. This combination of a heavy training day, not eating too well, alcohol and limited sleep meant I woke up Saturday with a horrible head cold feeling pretty horrific.

However after thinking about it, I thought if I woke up Sunday feeling better than I did Saturday then I’d ride. Woke up at 6am to get ready and felt a little better, so I dosed up with Sudafed and got on with it. The course was in Ripley, so a good 20 miles from home. Decided to give myself the best chance of not getting more ill I’d get the train most of the way there so cycled to Clapham Junction, got the train to Woking, then cycled the remaining 5 and a bit miles to Ripley. By the time I got there it was warming up a bit, but the roads were still very greasy. I was unseeded and therefore one of the first off at 9:02. I signed on and got my number pinned on, before bimbling over to the start. So much for a warm up!

I lined up at the start still feeling pretty groggy and totally unsure at how my legs and lungs would feel. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and I was about to find out, felt good off the start, and quickly settled into aero position. (The course for anyone that doesn’t know is two almost 7 mile laps, with the beginning half lap largely an uphill drag, followed by a section of rolling A-road, before a steady downhill/flat section back to the start of the lap.) I looked down to settle into an appropriate power to see no power or cadence readings. Great start. Annoying as I knew the PM was fine, it was just a Garmin issue. I tried several times to re-scan for the PM but the Garmin was having none of it, before I just switched off and switched back on. On doing so I had everything back on screen, however I’d spent the first 6 mins riding blind so to speak, so had probably been going way too hard knowing me. I settled back in and started aiming for my target 300w which at this point felt ok. Negotiated some of the technical turns before getting onto the A-road, which I felt like I did at a snails pace due to the roads being so slippy.

Turned onto the A-road and felt OK, still hitting c.300w and was quickly gaining on my minute man. Up to the left hand turn at the roundabout and onto the downhill section I took the next sweeping right handers pretty steady, before getting back in aero and passing the guy in front at some speed. Back through the start finish and onto Hungry Hill Lane for the second time. The surface on the road goes from sublime to ridiculous as just certain sections have been resurfaced which adds to the struggle and struggling I was, it was getting tougher to push a gear at the watts I wanted, and I couldn’t seem to find the right one. I was pretty quickly passed by Pat Wright who had just set off, and made me look like I was going backwards. As I got up towards the A-road again I was in dire straights and seriously struggline. Not sure if this was fitness, or the cold meaning I was struggling but I felt like I was out of juice. Turned onto the A-road and tried to keep the speed up but at points it felt like I was struggling to even keep to 200w. Eventually got the the next left turn at the roundabout and started the downhill section. The legs seemed to come back a bit at this point, and I maintained some good power back down to the finish before putting in a good dig to cross the line in 36:40.

Pretty dissapoitned with this overall, no power PBs which given how i’d been going in training I was expecting, not a particularly good time, and mentally I felt I’d been really weak too, especially during the middle of the second lap! Probably not helped by the fact I’d gone in with no particular aim or target time. Got back to HQ had some tea and cake, but was feeling crap and just wanted to get home. The weather was decent so just crawled home, still felt like a bit of a clown crawling along on a full TT rig with a winter jacket and backpack with all my gear on! Pretty frustrating day all in.

Looking forward to putting in a proper effort on another course soon. Not sure the hilly nature of this course is something I’m suited to either.

Avg Power (for the time it was working) – 280w. Power curve below, note the drop at the right hand of the curve where I had no data.

HR avg – 176bpm (which I think tells the story. Would have ideally wanted this to be closed to 180+ throughout. Only hit a peak of 182bpm (max is 194bpm)

power curve

Hillingdon IWS 4th Cat – Race 7 of 9

I went much easier on training in the run up to this race, having had a really hard week the week before, and feeling so down on power in the actual race. Just a couple of rides, and intervals, no huge miles. Although, I did end up going out on the Friday, and the legs felt so good I ended up doing a lap of Richmond Park at a little below threshold which was probably slightly stupid.

I got up on Saturday and prepped as usual, despite the weather being pretty vile, 4 or so degrees and rain/sleet. Got on my bike and cycled the 10 miles or so up to Hillingdon, stupid garmin tried to direct me onto the M4, but a quick check of googlemaps had me going again and was there in plenty of time.

Was so glad I bought a change of base layers, socks and shoes when I got there as I was sodden already. Got changed and ready and headed out onto the circuit for a couple of recon laps and to try and warm up. The wind was blowing pretty strong, and for anyone who knows Hillingdon, it was blowing down the small rise up to the corners, so if you were at the front of the bunch here it would be tough. Then it would string right out down the start/finish straight with it being downwind.

We lined up at the start and off we went after the usual briefing. I’d never raced in the rain, but imagined it to be pretty grim. It was, think constant face full of spray and grit when sat in the bunch. I was soaked again after the first couple of laps, and was starting to lose the feeling in my hands. My legs felt reasonable though, although not as good as they did the day before annoyingly. I sat in the bunch for the first half, just scoping things out, where would be best to attack from, and just working on moving around the group, which I was feeling way more comfortable doing.

Did a couple of turns on the front but was keen to save my juice for the end. Managed a couple of attacks when required as well, but nothing looked too dangerous, especially with that headwind going up the hill.

Eventually the hands started to come back to me and I started feeling a bit better, just before the lap board came out. I consciously got myself in the front group, but was keen to not be taking the wind all the way up the hill each time, so let the first couple of riders come past me and cheekily sat in up the hill which seemed to work well. With 2 laps to go a couple of attacks went off but again, nothing that looked dangerous, and I helped to manage the gap to them without working too hard until we came round for the last lap. One guy had a couple of seconds on the bunch, and another was just off the front.

Again I positioned myself nicely out of the wind up the hill, and by this point the two up front were struggling into the wind. I knew I have decent power for a lap at full gas, but wanted to wait until half a lap, which took a fair bit of discipline. As we got half way up the hill I kicked hard, I was sat about fourth wheel in the group by this point, so used them to hide from the wind and slingshot past, I was out of the saddle and sprinting up the hill, I used the first and second riders slipstreams and past both before the corners, I gained a bit of breath back through the first hairpin, and then was out of the saddle and sprinting for the line clear of everyone. Quickly looked back and I seemed to have a good gap so I sat back in the saddle but kept the power as high as I could, before rounding the last corner and sprinting for the line!

In my head I was sprinting for the win, until I rounded the last corner and saw another 4th Cat rider up the road!! I rolled up to him past the line and apparently he’d been in a solo break since 25 mins in! Very impressive given the conditions

Felt a little disappointed not to be able to win, but 2nd had meant I still had enough points to move up to 3rd Cat so I had to be happy, so I suspect my first win won’t come for some time yet, as I have no doubt in moving up a category the standard will be much higher. This allows me to enter some proper road races though, which I’m really looking forward to. I’d set myself the goal of becoming 3rd Cat within the first half of the year, so to do it in January alone after 3 races, I was pretty happy with.

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Me in the background, sprinting for what I thought was 1st!

Strava ride – https://www.strava.com/activities/248557859

Avgerage Power – 247w

NP – 267w

As an aside, I’ve also managed to drop 5kg since Christmas to put me at 80kg, meaning the w/kg is starting to look a bit better. Looking to ideally get down towards 75kg in the next couple of months.

2015: The beginning of a cycling focused year.

Feels an age since my last post after Ironman UK 2014!

Quite a bit has changed, I’m now living in London, and have decided to concentrate in 2015 solely on my cycling. Cycling has always been the aspect of triathlon I’ve enjoyed the most, and its always been by some margin my strength. So it kind of sense to me, especially as I was struggling to come up with goals that would keep me really engaged in triathlon training.

So I moved to London in October, and soon after I started looking for a club to join to get out cycling with, as the only place I’d been riding to date was round Richmond Park. I asked at a few, most of which had waiting lists! Not only that but required you to be getting out on a “newbie run” to get used to riding close to others. That was until somebody recommended me to a group of cyclists called Paceline RT. Their ethos was to race hard but also give as much back to the sport in terms of organisation volunteering as possible, which I really liked. I’m now a member, and have been on a couple of rides, which have been great, and the people have been really welcoming!

I started training again proper late December as I attempted some of the Rapha Festive 500, weather conditions and fitness meant I only did around half of it but it got me out the door. Training since then has ramped up a fair bit and I’m now doing around 8 hours a week and my watts have started to increase nicely.

My aims for the year are as below

  • Get to Cat 3
  • Start to be in the mix in Cat 3
  • Get some TT’s under my belt and improve on my 23:28 10 time from 2014
  • Race the relay bike leg of Outlaw Half (Entered solo, but switched to relay entry)
  • Race lots and have fun!

So some fairly simple aims, hopefully all of which I can accomplish. One of the benefits of being a cyclist rather than triathlete is the frequency of races, I’ve already pinned a number on twice this year, and its not even February. I was waiting until April last year to get my first triathlon in.

So onto the races that I’ve done so far, both of which have been at Hillingdon cycle circuit, as a part of the Imperial Winter Series.

Hillingdon Cat 4 Race – 17/01/15

The circuit is a 10 mile ride from my house, so I set up a route on my Garmin and trundled off to hillingdon, being as light on the power as I could. I’d done a fast club run the week before and my legs felt the best they had in a while, so I was hoping to hold onto the bunch at least. I’ve only raced cat 4 once before, and I ended up getting dropped from the bunch a couple of laps before the end. So I just wanted to gauge fitness.

I got to the sign-on an hour early and got my number, which was stupid on my half as I ended up sat there shivering prior to the race! I busied myself with checking out all the competition and looking at the other people’s rides, there was some nice bikes there too. Eventually it was coming up to 1 o clock and all the Cat 4’s starting heading out onto the circuit. I did one quick lap to familiarise what is a fairly simple circuit. The conditions were ok bit the circuit was damp and I was nervous into the corners. There was a stiff headwind blowing onto the last corner and final straight as well, which we were told was slowing the bunch up a lot.

I pulled up to the bunch right at the back before the start and waited for the flag to drop getting pretty nervous at how I would fare at this point. We were off amongst a throng of cleats clipping in. The pace started and was a fair tempo, but I quickly realised I shouldn’t have a problem holding on, and began to settle in and feel comfortable in the bunch. I also quickly realised the last corner was a great place to close on the group if needed due to them being slowed by the wind. The first couple of laps were tentative as I was a bit nervous at the speed of some of the cornering, but it felt OK.

I was mindful only about 3 laps in that I was pretty much just hanging at the back of the bunch, and from everything I’ve read about others road racing, was that if you’re not moving forward your going backwards in the group. So I decided to try to work my way up to near the front for a bit, using the last corner as a slingshot when the group slowed, I swung round the outside, and was quickly coming up on the bunch leaders. Before I knew it I was putting in a proper effort, and was off the front. Stupidly I thought I could stay away and put in a pretty big effort, in the hope that some others would bridge across but nobody seemed to, and after a lap and a half the bunch was catching back up so I wound the effort back down and waited for the group to catch, before I quickly ended up back at the rear of the bunch. The effort felt great though, and the feeling of getting out in front of the bunch was electric, I loved it.

I decided to measure my effort a bit more across the next few laps, but ended up being more naive and attacking a few more time to no avail. The racing felt good though, and was clean, plenty of communication in the group, and nobody seemed to be riding too wildly. 5 laps to go and I still had in my head a vision of me soloing to victory. I blame idolising Tony Martin, and some of his insane solo breaks! So with one lap to go I gave it everything and got past the front of the group and round the first two corners, I was clear, but the group were chasing hard, and I was getting caught by the time the track started to pitch up slightly. By the corner complex I was back on the front, and by the last corner I was spent, and sat up. Ended up rolling across the line in 36th.

So a fun experience for my first race, and I was most pleased with the fitness level, especially knowing that I still have so much more to give in terms of besting last years peak fitness. Managed to get a mention in the post race results report, and even won a spot prize of a full bike service worth £100 or so. Awesome!

I trundled back home, happy in the knowledge that I’d left it all out on track, something which I never really got from triathlon, and the buzz and adrenalin of racing was brilliant. Looking back at my power file, I’d also made a couple of Pb’s which was great too.

The next couple of days I took some advice from the Paceline guys, and had a think about how I wanted my next race to go which was to be the following weekend. In summary, less futile attacking (a lot of last weeks was just me wanting to test myself and see my level vs the bunch) and I wanted to sit in a bit more, and observe the race, follow any attacks that look good, and potentially feature in the sprint.

Hillingdon Cat 4 Race – 24/01/2015

The week up to the race had been training heavy, and I’d covered around 90 miles. This was despite carrying a bit of a knee niggle, which I’d realised had been down to bad cleat position. Hopefully this wouldn’t affect the race. Conditions were better today than they had been all week. A sunny, clear but slightly windy day. I set off to Hillingdon into a headwind, and straight away my legs felt awful, totally blocked, and putting any power down felt seriously tough, and I felt lethargic. Bad news. My head wasn’t really in it as soon as I felt this, but I just kept my head down and carried onto Hillingdon. Good training riding with a bunch if nothing else I thought.

I arrived at a more sensible time, and just had enough time to sort myself before heading out onto the circuit. I’d also brought a change of base layer and jersey to change into before the start, to try to keep a bit warmer which seemed to work.

We set off and the first couple of laps the tempo felt the same as last week, the wind was blowing slightly differently though, and the bunch was fast down the back straight, but slowing climbing the small rise into the corners. I was feeling abysmal by this point and was just hoping to stay in touch of the bunch all race in tact. The riding was a lot more ragged this week, and I saw 3 separate crashes, which worried me a bit. I pretty much sat in the bunch the whole race up until we got shown the 5 to go board. I decided to use this opportunity to at least try to move up to the front a bit. My legs had started to feel a bit better by this point. I’d scoped a few places on the circuit to move up, and executed these nicely on the 5 to go lap nicely, to find myself very near the front. When suddenly I felt myself going clear, and stupidly decided to dig and give it a proper go. The watts came up and I put in a proper effort, I was way faster through the corners using what I had learnt last week, and quickly had a small gap on the bunch, I went through the 3, and 2 to go lapboards clear, but on reaching the corners the bunch had closed, so I used the opportunity to sit up and recover a bit. Which luckily worked as I was able to hold near the front of the bunch on getting caught.

We flew through the last lap board with the pace much higher. I almost got completely squeezed on the straight, and for the first time actually touched bars on both sides with two riders trying to close up, I held my ground and we started to come up the back straight. I put in a bit of a dig and made some more ground on some other riders that were now up at the front. Through the last complex of corners and I was in position to contest the sprint. I felt I launched at a good time, and didn’t appear to go backwards at least, but my legs were shot from the earlier big 8 minute effort. I sprinted across the line and was fairly sure I was at least in the top 10, so had secured some points, I hoped.

My legs were absolutely on fire with lactic acid as I rolled back to the clubhouse building. I quickly got changed and started to spin back home. My legs were completely shot by this point and I was struggling to even get over 150w. But once I again, I had to be pretty happy that I’d given it everything. Despite attacking accidentally off the front again, and too early. At least I’d hopefully salvaged something from it.

I’d smashed a couple of power pb’s notably 10 min power which was 50 watts higher than previous best, due to giving everything on my futile attack! 20 min power was also 10 watts higher than my 2015 best, but looking at the curve, this wasn’t even really a representative effort. I know when fresh now I can best that for certain.

The next few weeks

I’ve got another Hillingdon race coming up on the 31st, so will aim to be fresher for that, and again, aim to either attack at an actual opportune moment, or contest the sprint properly. But I guess it depends on the race, conditions and suchlike. But I’m please with current fitness and form.

I’m also dusting off the TT bike for the 8th Feb, for the KW Sporting 14. The course which I recce’d earlier this week. The course takes a steady rise for the first half of the lap, followed by a fast rolling A-road, and a fast slight decline section back to the start. Its two laps, so should be interesting to see how I go there.

In addition I’ve got some Novice racers training days at the Cyclopark, which are necessary if I want to compete in the Surrey road race league later in the year.

After that, I’m off on a training camp to Alicante at the start of March, so am really looking forward to that. It’ll be my first, and I’m a bit anxious as to whether I can cope with the volume, but hoping by then fitness is further improved!

So far I’m loving it, racing is fantastic, and I’m way more engaged in training than I have been for quite a long while.

 —-
EDIT
Just got my results through for the 2nd Cat 4 race, and managed to finish 6th! So thats 4 points in the bag. Just another 8 needed now until I can get to Cat 3.