Race Report: Watford Velo Sport Road Race
Another fantastic weekend of racing this Bank Holiday! Read on to hear Ollie's report on his and Seb's fantastic podium ride in Watford Velo Sport RR...
Sunday 5th May saw Seb and I (representing HWCC) compete in the Watford Velo Sport Road Race on a circuit just outside of Wing. A chilly start at 9am but once we'd done a brief warm up and the adrenaline started flowing in anticipation of getting racing the cold temperatures were soon forgotten.
As seems to be the pattern of all road races, the race began fast, Seb and I had planned to just follow moves for the first bit of the race to see if anything was sticking before getting more active ourselves once things died down a bit. Seb ended up in a 2-up for about 20 minutes early doors dangling just off the front of the bunch, these two eventually finished first and second so we should've just let them roll away.... Anyway, they were both reeled back in at which point things began to settle down a little. Just before we completed the first lap of 3.5 I clipped off the front and quickly established a roughly 10-15 second lead without anyone else wanting to join me, I knew I was never going to go alone so just kept a steady effort hoping someone (or a group) would join me. I'd made the right move since one strong rider came across followed by a group of about 6 others, a few of which Seb and I had noted as being ones to watch, so I became confident this may stick. The group worked well, putting in a real hard 5-10minutes to establish a gap then settling to hold the lead, Seb wasn't initially in this group but I was confident he would somehow get across. After about 5 minutes I look to my right and hear a 'ello Ollie', somehow Seb had solo'd over to a group of 8 strong guys working well in a chainy, absolute machine.
This group started off as 10 riders but after a few drags tired some riders it was whittled down to 8 going in to the last lap. One rider attacked with just under a lap to go but never established a big gap, we held him at about 10 seconds for the remainder of the last lap and caught him in the final push for the line. The finish was up a small drag which suited Seb and I over a pan flat sprint, a few riders opened up a little early and the eventual winner came around me to then just hold on to a fast finishing Garry on the line, with myself just behind in 3rd. Dan Shoobridge put in a strong ride finishing 4th to make it a trio of (ex) HWCC riders in 2nd,3rd and 4th.
A great day out and the only team to have two riders represented in the break, a pretty clinical performance but we spent a good portion of the car journey home questioning how we could've won it or even better get first and second. I guess next time just got to push the pedals a little harder.... Next up for Seb and I is the Ridgeway Spring classic on Saturday 11th May followed by Thames Velo Nat B on the drift road circuit on Sunday 12th, should be a tough weekend!