Three DHBC riders turned up for the second round of the sprint grand prix on Dunc Gray Velodrome on Saturday. Noel Gorrell and Bro Caley had pre-entered the capped 48 rider pool, but James the race director said he was accepting anyone who wanted to enter on the day so I decided to have a hit out too. The format is first a flying 200 used to grade the riders, then 3 matched sprints in round robin pools of 4 and a final 1 vs 2 and 3 v4. In the fly, Bro set a new PB of 12.6 s down from 13.1 sec and I was thrilled to manage 13.2 s at my first attempt on Dunc, down from 13.6s on Tempe. Noel's was 12.9?s. He'll have to provide his rating of that.
My pool was Noel, Adam Martin of RBCC who trains with us and Felice Beitzel from Canberra, with my first matched sprint against Noel. Noel was a bit wary of riding slowly as he had slipped at low speed on the first turn in the previous sprint GP. I had never raced one of these things on Dunc Gray so - I rode slowly and as my wheel crossed the red line I slipped down the track whereupon Noel rode directly, slowly, over me. I was then relegated (unfairly) for riding too slow. So much for that non-race. Next race I was chicked by Felice. My excuse was I backed off when she came out of the sprinters lane as I was about to pass in turn three. You have to have an excuse. Next race didn't happen because Adam was too afraid to race me and went home. With only three riders in the pool, they gave us a derby - that's all three on the track. Felice led out coz she had to. I was third wheel and went high up the track. Noel followed me up moving me to second wheel. Then Felice swung up at the front and Noel decided to dive down and attack thinking I would have to ride three wide around the bend to pass him, but he got clear ahead of Felice and I was able to pass her and get on his wheel. 500m was too long a sprint for Noel and he started to flag on the home straight. Normally that's me - if I'm in contention, I'm normally the one out the front flagging and getting passed. I knew how he was probably feeling so I pulled out the furry which Dougie had kindly lent me for the afternoon, and had a big dig to pass Noel on the line by the radial difference between my 23c and whatever thin thing Noel had on his front wheel. Bro got beaten in all his races but learnt a lot. Definitely a mixed bag for me but I learnt even more and am keen to try it again sometime.
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