Sunday, February 21, 2010

Bev May Women's Road Tour

A little drive to Morrinsville early on Saturday morning for a final slap in the legs over the weekend before heading to Oz next week for Mountains to Beach stage race.

The Bev May tour is a 2 day, 4 stage race for Women only. For those of you who cycle under a rock and don't know who Bev May is, she has been one of the most amazing and inspiring female riders in NZ and has dedicated a good 50 years of her life to the sport of cycling... She runs this tour every year (this was it's 21st year). I rode the tour for the first time last year in B grade and despite coming nearly dead last in the grade (let's face it, as a mountain biker, I generally have no idea of pack dynamics in road racing!), I really enjoyed the atmosphere and camaraderie, and it was great training.

This year, i chose to ride C grade for the shorter distances to get some speed work in my legs for the Mountains to Beach Stage race in a week's time... make no mistake, the C grade competition wasn't soft and I found myself working hard to stay with the top pack in every stage.

The first stage was a 22km time trial which I completed in a little over 37 minutes. I was stoked with my average speed and it put me in 4th place for general classification. The second stage that afternoon was a 44km road race in which I finished 5th in a sprint finish. The third stage the next morning saw some weary legs climb a couple of decent li'l hills, and I managed to stay with the top bunch to finish 4th in another sprint finish. Our final stage was a criterium and after sprinting away on the final lap, I was caught up on the final straight and finished an equal 3rd... In the end, 4th overall.

I had an awesome time and it was great to also witness some amazing A-grade and up-and-coming road talent... Something I don't often get to do... There was also some good cash up for grabs and even if you're a mountain biker, it's great training... So girls, if you only try out one road race a year (a little like me), this really should be one on your list!!! Check out Morrinsville Wheelers website for results and for next year's dates.

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