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Cotswold League Round 3 – Nic Mckibbin Takes The Win!

17 May , 2017  

 

Bath CC got of to a promising start in the 2017 Coltswold League after Nic Mckibbin took the win after breaking away, with a nail-biting drag to the line.

This should put Nic close to the top of the rankings with a chance of him gaining the Blue Jersey if he gets a good result in the next race (if only the cotswold league website were updated!).

Here is how the race unfolded from a riders point of view:

The beginning of the race

Ben: Heading into my first Cotswold League and first race with cat 2 riders I wasn’t too sure what to expect.  However, Nic arrived late as per usual and the race soon got underway.

 

Sam: With blue sky and sun shining down over Wiltshire I looked forward to my first ever RR.  The pace was aggressive from the start with some dicey overtaking being done by other teams near the bends.

 

Conor: I got there in plenty of time and went straight to get my gears checked and collect my number. I met up with the bath guys and we warmed up on the road together, before the race briefing all of the bath guys met up to discuss tactics for the race. We agreed that we would all try and stay to the front of the race and cover attacks, after David’s motivational speech we went to the commissaries briefing and lined up behind the start car, I was next to the leader (Jamie Wilkins). We rolled out and after 2 minutes the flagged dropped and the race was live. The start of the racing was super quick averaging 265 watts with an average speed of 45.5kmh in the first 45 minutes of the race. I stayed near the front end to avoid any crashes within the peloton. after 45 minutes the race slowed down and the first breakaway went off for the day, Nic was involved in this so me and jake tried to distrupt the chase.

 

Jake: Started pretty quick, followed lots of moves but nothing stuck.

 

 

Nic: The beginning of the race was pretty fast, (think we averaged above 43kph in the first hour).There were lots of attacks, but a lot of teams were working on the front, so nothing really got any gaps. I didn’t actually feel great at the start so mainly just sat in and tried to conserve energy.

 

 

The middle bit

Ben: After spending the first lap surprised at how comfortably I was able to keep up, the race lit up a bit at the start of the second lap, stringing the bunch out and opening some small gaps.

 

Sam: I held on for a while but became disconnected from the main bunch with a couple others as the pace cranked up once again while attacking in the crosswind, as those around me sat up and called it a day, I desperately tried to catch up while digging deep, 3 miles later and out of site I confided that my race was over but I’d at least make use of the sunshine and continue it as a solo training ride.

 

Conor: over half way through the race the break had been caught, me and Nic started talking about the library and what he was planning on doing for the rest of the race, I quote him saying “my legs feel really bad today”.

 

Nic: Midway through the second lap, I attacked on a little uphill part, Ben Strain (Radeon) and a Ride 24/7 guy came with me. We worked well together, and had a gap of around 30 seconds at one point, but the chase never sat up behind so I think we all knew our fate! We were up the road for about 30mins and as soon as we were caught, the race winning move of 3 guys went clear.

The finish

Ben: The pace was high chasing the break and there were a couple of small crashes in the last couple of miles but the gap to Nic out front was never closed, leaving him to take a strong win.

 

Sam: Overall a great experience with room for improvement for my next race, at least I worked on a tan.

Conor: With 15km to go Nic attacked and he stayed away, the bunch looked at eachohter and no one wanted to chase. I was planning a move with 2km to go however this was interrupted by someone taking out my front wheel and me ending up on the grass and it was race over. It was a shame as I felt good, I got checked out by the medics and looked at my damaged bike and I was determined to finish the race. I rolled across the line to find out that Nic had won and i was very happy for him.
Jake: On the final lap a group of 3 got away, nobody really wanted to chase it back yet. There were a few attempts at pushing the pace, then nick attacked about 10km out on a little kicker but no-one followed and he was out of site really quickly. The pace didn’t really seem to pick up until the final 2/3kms so I was pretty surprised at how close it was at the end.
Nic: Veloton and a few other teams were working on the front to try and bring it back, but the gap didn’t seem to be coming down. This wasn’t helped by the fact the peloton had to pull over to let an ambulance through! I didn’t know how many guys were up the road at this point or what kind of gap they had (turns out it was 1min). So with 12km to go, on a little downhill, I let the wheel in front of me go a little and then ran up his slipstream just at the bottom of the hill and attacked. I was hoping that someone would follow me, but when I saw I had a gap, I just decided to press on. After a few mins I could see the lead car in the distance so just kept chasing until I caught the 3 leaders. As soon as I joined we didn’t work very well and the gap to the peloton came down very quickly. Coming into the final, i didn’t want to leave it too late as the peloton were just meters behind us, but luckily I just stayed away to take the win!


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