Photo copyright of Alan Dingwall
What is it with me and my early morning lack of motivation, guess I’m just a stereotypical teenager after all! Needless to say that was out of the window on arriving at the picturesque Hetton Lyons Country Park for another day of fab CXNE Series racing. No time to rest though, it was out of the van and straight onto the course to get the lay of the land, wow, this was going to be a hard push!
A stretched out large hill section followed by a deceptive little bugger of a smaller hill added to the endless off cambers, well I knew I was in for some suffering.
Ten minutes until I had to be on the start line, a quick dash to the van to throw some gels and energy drinks down my neck and where my mam was questioning my nerves (honestly, how could she tell?) and Colin (dad’s team mate) adjusting my bike, I have my own race crew y'know! Shook myself down, felt pretty sorted with how to tackle the course and headed off for the start line. Yet again, (yep, you guessed it) another amazing turn out for the women’s category, we’re going places! In fact having said that it was a really good turn out for the CXNE itself.
* BANG *
Straight up and out of the saddle, Bev Blakeman shot off in front with a few others and I was running in third place for the first lap. After a while we split up, Bev and Nicola Davies showed their amazing athletic abilities tearing up the trail ahead along with Sarah Murray.
I wasn’t working alone however, I was constantly checking over my shoulder to see where Alison Sarmiento was, she was scarily creeping up on me! A little while later she took her chance and rode past, this was just before a really thick muddy section where she dismounted, I knew I had to ride through it in order to gain back my fourth place. It worked and I then knuckled down.
The last lap came around surprisingly quickly which was good as it meant I only had to tackle that blasted hill once more, gritting my teeth through the lactic acid build up. I came through the finishing line as the 1st junior woman and 4th woman. Not so bad after all and what a fantastic course.
Now for a tough week of training in preparation for Inter-Regional Champs and then the Nationals at Durham the following week, wish me luck!
I would like to ask Alan Draffan to step forward and take a bow for the fantastic photography, if you would like to see more of his work check here: Alan Draffan Photosport on Facebook
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