A pleasant Sunday morning in the country
Corner marshalling at Lang Lang
I spent this morning at Corner 4 at the Lang Lang road race. It's my usual corner, Lang Lang being a reasonably hilly course and when I was a roady I wasn't much (!) of a climber. The two times I 'raced' Lang Lang I finished pretty close to DFL, so it's a good race to volunteer to help at. I've been doing this corner now for I think 3 years? Maybe 4? Anyway, I know where to put the signs, which bunches go which way etc. It's familiar and comfortable. I took a chair and a book and had a read, waved a flag a bit when the bunches came past and generally had a pleasant Sunday morning. It didn't rain, but I had a good goretex rain jacket just in case and an ushanka to keep my scone warm. The racing went well, a small turnout for most grades, probably scared off by the forecast weather (rain, hail etc) but the weather was very benign in the end and if you missed it, it was really pleasant down there.
I went down carpooling with Nick Bird, he's got a snazzy new Golf TDI something, a turbo diesel so it's pretty easy on fuel and quite zippy, getting the hang of the startrek controls was interesting at first (I drove, Nick hates driving and I quite enjoy it), but it was a comfortable and quick trip. a bit under 75 minutes to get there from aboc HQ.
Some feedback for the organisers : Please make sure that volunteers are looked after - I was fine, I had everything I needed (chair, book, raincoat, food etc) but a few vollies arrived not knowing what their jobs were and unprepared, and they needed to be informed beforehand so they could be prepared, and also the club should feed and water the vollies. This needs to be a priority. We do it at the TSSS (Thankyou Bev!) It's not hard and it makes vollies feel appreciated. We need vollies to run races.
And, the most important message. If you race, you MUST help at some races. No-one is too important to volunteer to help every now and then. We're not professionals, everyone can afford to spend half a day a couple of times a year helping out at a race. Blackburn is, I think, way too 'undemanding' of its members. It needs to do a good job of communicating with club members (this is getting better slowly, but still has a long way to go), but it needs to enforce (carrot and stick) that club members help at some races. This cannot be optional. Races take a lot of time to make happen and there's a small team of dedicated people organising them. Personally I want to thank Brian Harwood and his team for Lang Lang today, he did a tower of work, as did Damien Petrie and David de Gama in the past organising Lang Lang, but they cannot do it on their own. If you haven't helped out at a race, you need to. Everyone. I don't care if you're a wannabe professional, a former pro or a world champion, everyone who races has an obligation to assist at a few races a year. If it's good enough for Stuart 'V-Train' Vaughan to help at time trials (he's a current world champion from HCC), it's good enough for everyone else.
In other news, when I got home this arvo I hit the PowerHouse. 5 x 6 @ 180kg, last set I did 8. W00t! And aboc may soon have another coach, watch this space.
Roast beef tonight for dinner, with spuds, parsnip and kent cut pumpkin. Time to cook dinner!