Monday 18 June 2007

Weekend Round-Up

My weekend was fairly fun-packed. The sight and sound of the heavy showers early on Saturday morning put me off making the journey to the MOD Chertsey - especially knowing that I was going to have to face a soaking just riding over to the event. Instead I caught up on my house-hold chores before tackling an interval session on the turbo trainer.

The weather was much better on Sunday so I made the journey down to Thruxton (near Andover) to do Susie's Circuit Race. I like doing this one because although it's billed as a women-only event, you actually race with the 4th category men. This way, you get the full benefit of the 40-strong peloton. Then you get a placing out of the women that were there. It's harder work if they set-off just a small group of women together.

The race was crash free (for once !) and went ok - except that I was slow to get out of the saddle for the sprint, and ended up off the back in the closing stages of the race. I managed 7th out of 9 women starters. Not that pretty a result, but I still earned some British Cycling points. My total tally is now in double figures, and I have already exceeded last year's score. That's progress !

So it was a good excuse to celebrate my small success with merrymaking at the Cuban Carnival held at Southwark Park - replenished my glucose stores with jerk chicken and rice (not entirely cuban), rehydrated with beer (slightly cuban), and used what energy I had left for salsa dancing (very cuban) - or at least my version of it !

Another person who may have a reason to celebrate this weekend is Frenchman Christophe Moreau (Ag2R), who won the Daphine Libere Criterium. This race, which crosses the French alps, is seen as a dress rehearsal for the Tour de France. The results a rider obtains in this race is a reflection of what they are likely to get in "La Grande Boucle". Could this be a good omen for Monsieur Moreau ? There hasn't been a Frenchman win the Tour de France since Bernard Hinault in 1985. Now wouldn't that be a coup ??

Londoner, and Olympic track medallist Bradley Wiggins (Cofidis) finished 95th in this race (out of 149 starters). What's more significant is that he won the prologue. So there's every reason for I and loads of other cycling aficionados to be out in Hyde Park on 7th July to watch what could be a historic moment for British Cycling.

Another reason for me to be at Hyde Park that weekend is to do the Tour de France women's support criterium race on the 8th July. Now if Bradley could win the prologue and I could win the women's race that would be a dream ! Ok, I'd be happy with one out of two of those scenarios. Somehow, I know which one of them is much more likely to happen !

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