Thursday, 25 March 2010
Absa Cape Epic Stage 5 Time Trial
It's late; nearly 9pm! We sat at a VIP table at dinner as official nutrition sponsor. Today was short and sharp which suited my style much better than Dave's. Jose Hermida said he thought every team was the same today -an XC racer on the front the whole way round, and a Marathon Racer slogging behind!
Being the only Hors Category MTB race in the world, the 27km TT started down a proper start ramp with an entire high school in the pavilion cheering starters on! We made a fast start, frustrated at seeing riders rolling out in the middle ring -I even wore overshoes. For the next hour and a half we rode not quite at full-gas but at a point where DA could just about keep his breakfast down. It was far from flat and once again we covered some really rugged trails, steep rocky climbs countered with rocky steep descents. Both saw other teams walking -not us.
109th was our best stage result and snatched us another place on GC. All teams made it back but don't expect as many to be as lucky tomorrow as we head over to Oak Valley, covering 123km and 2300m climbing. We're both feeling pretty apprehensive as it's one of the toughest stages but following the tragedy earlier in the week, everyone is super-on the lookout for each other and hopefully we'll be one of the lucky ones.