Friday, August 14, 2009

Bontrager 24/12 Report

Better late than never, so here it is:

Last year, Ryan and I enjoyed the Bontrager 24/12 event in Plymouth, UK so much that we spontaneously signed up again for this event. This event would fill the gap nicely that was left when we had decided to give the Canadian World Cups a miss. Luckily TorQ had reserved a place for us in the 12hour Mixed Pairs category.

Last year the competition was pretty stiff, with our main competitors in the form of Kate and Ian Potter. Those two gave us a real run for our money that time and made for some very close and exciting racing which asked us to be as strategically clever as possible to etch out a close margin towards our win. From the entry list it seemed that this year would be a little easier.

The course was similar to last year, but due to some rain the week earlier, the organizers had to make it more weatherproof, cutting out some lovely singletrack sections from last year. It was still a very enjoyable course - with the exception of the Clif bar climb..... a very steep killer climb about half way through the 13km lap. I dreaded this climb every lap.

In the morning before the race I woke up with stomach cramps and a general feeling of shittiness. But of course I couldn't let Ryan down now. So I took a few painkillers and made it to the start.
The weather was nice - not as comparable to the hot 2 day summer from last year though. Our strategy was similar to last year: Ryan would do 2 laps and me one in repeat until Ryan would be too tired/slowed down, that we would switch to 1-1 laps each. However, I wasn't feeling well at the start and with every lap I felt worse. We had a comfortable lead on 2nd place, so I was happy when Ryan suggested to do a 4th set of double laps.

I also wanted to take a chance on the Queen of the Night competition for fastest female night lap but unfortunately due to some confusion I started my night lap too early and it was not in the queen of the night competition window. I tried again later on, but I was so wrecked and exhausted and just wanted to finish the race. In the end it was Maddie Horton who had the fastest female night lap (I think mine was 2nd fastest though). I wasn't happy at all when Ryan sent me out again to finish our race with another lap - grrrr....

In the end we had completed 18 laps (Ryan doing 11 of them) in 12hours 6min time, one lap more than 2nd place in our category. We actually almost beat all the pairs categories, we had a lead on the TorQ male pair before I started my last 2 laps, but unfortunately they overtook me on my last lap again and beat us by 3min.

Unfortunately though after the event I ended up being sick for 2 weeks, with 5 days almost completely off the bike and am still trying to get rid of a sore throat that keeps coming back.... :(

Results on timelaps here. Report by Joolze Dymond on BritishCycling here and Pictures by Joolze here.

Thanks as usual to TorQ for all their support in the race, and a special thanks the TorQ team manager Rob Barker.

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