All spokes 100km cyclo sportif

The final event of the all spokes festival held in the hunter valley was the 100km cyclo sportif race. This road race event was held around the small village of Pokolbin and was a 20km circuit that would be completed five times. The highlight of the course was the 4km of very rough road that could easily separate the bunch into small groups. This rough section of road that was likened to the Paris-Roubox was only 2km from the finish line which meant that positioning would be circuital prior to entering the section.

It was about 9:30am on the Sunday and we were on the line ready to go .I had found myself at the back of the starting pack as I decided to go to the toilet just before the riders were all called up to the line. There was about 150 or so riders ahead of me and I knew I needed to get to the front as quickly as possible or I would be history so as soon a the gun when I sprinted past any one and every on until I reached the front 20 riders about 4km later.

The first lap was fast and I got off the front with a few riders but it was quickly brought back in. Prior to race start I was told that I had to be on the front for the first lap through the start/finish to show the team colours and make a statement that we were there to win. All of the team was up the front for the first lap and the fast pace enables a small but strong breakaway of four rider including our own Mick Curren to get I small gap. The gap was only 100m but if any of our team went across to help Mick we would be dragging the whole bunch across so we just had to bit the bullet and let other teams try and chase whilst we cover the moves. One rider (Trenton Day) managed to get across to the break  and rolled hard turns with them until he cracked about 10km from the finish.

Coming into the final lap the breakaway was only 1min20sec ahead and then the chase really started. Over the back we could see the lead car but they weren’t giving up and with 5km to go Mick Curren hit the front of the breakaway and drove it hard and fast through the rough section giving them the 20 second gap the needed to win.

Mick won the sprint convincingly and celebrated with three different solutes as the crowd cheered the home town favourite on. The rest of the team put in a very dominant display by taking home the teams category as well.

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