On Sunday morning, 4 fine men of the Blotto order assembled for the St Kilda CC NeoMetro / Beller Team Time Trial. With more consistent training this year, we were sure to mix it with the best of B Grade (alas no C Grade TTT for us!)
The weather really turned it on, more than making up for the rained-out attempt a week prior: a beautiful 25 degrees and little wind to speak of. With some suffering the after-effects of a Saturday night fever, and some suffering from too much “re-hydration”, we had a quick warm up and discussed ‘tactics’. Well, we all knew the score- it was going to hurt, but not for long (8 laps of the crit circuit would be just over 10 minutes…)
Our time keeper and super aide-de-camp Robbie Storey, fresh from latté laps in Girona, donned the fabulous high-vis vest proclaiming “You can roll if you’re BLOTTO”. He had the knowledge, he had the power, but above all he had the pit lane boards! The adrenalin really started in the last minute before lift-off, being 2nd team off after BECOZ Cycling, ahead of Pat’sVeg and Canard.
It was full noise from the get-go, and we were doing about half a lap each on the front. Amazing how the wind feels gale force on certain straights, even though it’s a mere zephyr while stationary!! The tactics discussion included a “roll off to the left, even though it’s a left hand course” and we mostly got this done. The tactics also included “keep it smooth while pulling through” which was also mostly adhered too. Unfortunately, with 1.5 laps to go, Bird’s whimpering call to “ease up” turned into “you 3 go, go, GO!” in the space of seconds. This was much to Paul Kelly’s dismay- after his planned ‘last’ effort to launch us into the finish, he was required to knuckle down and hold that wheel.
Much kudos to the fellas, finishing 19 seconds down and just off the podium (ok, technically 4/4!) All in all it was a great experience, lots of fun and a few lessons learnt. If anything, the proximity to the podium (even punching a grade above our weight) has given us more determination for the Thursday BBRBs and Friday Intro-to-Rolling rides.