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Now that's a long weekend

by Dino Apolito last modified 2008-03-17 00:17

Going to work Monday morning for a rest never looked so good

Friday - Emily trains then school. Dad watches then eats.

A big weekend of cycling for the Apolito household began 6am Friday morning when my alarm blasted in my ear. Emily and I are meeting Carl at DISC for some training. I'm not riding but we're preparing Emily for the Junior state titles on April 5th and have been working on her Flying 200 line. It's one of the events the kids will be doing and we think it's one she can do especially well at given her "sprinter" status.

The session goes well and Emily has no trouble with the banks and getting into the nose bleed zone. She manages to do a 16 seconds F200 which we think is good. And this was straight after a fall. Carl holds her for a standing start but Emily doesn't push off when let go and topples over. I think that's every track cyclists idea of an embarrassing moment but she got back on her horse albeit with a couple of new bruises then it's a mad rush to get her to school on time.

Saturday - Emily
Another big day for Emily. She has her JG13 club championships races at BBN today. To the club's credit they brought these races forward so Emily and Anna Osbourne can compete in the above-mentioned state titles. Emily wins all three races to collect three Gold's for the day and will therefore be crowned the JG13 girls club track champion.

Her scratch race was tough as expected and she had to work hard to keep Anna at bay who has improved dramatically in the past couple of months. The plan was to watch Anna closely and make sure she didn't accelerate away. Anna tried to sprint past Emily at the bell but Em holds her out, keeping Anna at her shoulder around the clubroom bend before powering away on the back straight.

Emily enjoyed the match sprint. After all she has watched her old man win 10 out of 12 match sprints so far in the Trek series so she sorta knew what to do. After electing to lead she takes Anna high up on the bank and then using her weight advantage dives down into the home straight with a lap to go and sprints away for a very good win.

The time trial was a one lap blast and she records 29 seconds to win by 3 seconds and collect a clean sweep of wins. She then enters the regular E grade motorpace and is blown away by a motor bike on steroids. She's not alone there. Just about the entire club is killed by Graeme and his run away machine of pain on Saturday.

Saturday - Dino
I'm resigned to being upstaged once again by my daughter but am feeling OK and approach the B grade scratch quietly confident that I can at least finish this week. My chances are improved when Alan Dorin is moved up to A grade. Alan has made a habit of attacking at times when it hurts me the most (I don't know why Alan, I'm no threat) and is always surging so his promotion is good news to me.

The scratch race is shortened to 15 laps which also suits me and through the whole race there are no attacks, few surges and everyone is content to roll turns and wait. This suits me of course and I remember thinking mid race how the sprinters were loving this. Richard Hurley having come down from A grade is the man to beat so I keep an eye on him. Aidin is always there too and he is a master (at 18 years of age) at saving energy and using it when needed.

With two laps to go I somehow manage to get on the front. Why me always? This time I decide to swing high and soft pedal. Waiting, waiting... As we approach the far side  bank I sense Daniel Pendlebery is getting twitchy and is about to jump. In a flash my brain also registers that Richard and Aidin are toward the back and before I know it (and the others too) I have gone into a massive sprint for the line giving it absolutely everything. Unbeknown to me I opened up a 10-15 metre gap and later my HRM file will tell me I hit 56kph in the home straight. In the back straight I still can't hear or sense anyone behind me and am starting to wonder "Can I win this"? Then, as we hit the bank for the last time I hear the thundering hooves of the chasers. Three of them catch me as I'm tiring and go past as we hit the home straight. I come in 4th place. A good result that could have been better.

The points race is as points races tend to go for me - DNF. I wanted to go for the first sprint but am boxed in by a young Tyler. He knows exactly what I wanted to do ( and makes sure I can get out. So I roll around for a few more laps before calling it quits.

The motor pace is ugly. In my opinion the motor bike is too fast too early. After doing my turn behind the bike I miss my chance to slot into a gap straight away and in the resulting confusion we all get tangled up and I'm out the back in the twinkle of an eye. I'm annoyed for missing my chance. Had I got straight into that hole I think I would have been right there at the end.

So the regular track season ends for me. I managed to hold my place in B grade for the season which is the only consolation I get from an otherwise disappointing summer results wise.

Another early start. We need to be there at 8am for the junior racing. It's another golden day for Emily. This time her and Anna are team mates instead of competitors and they combine to win the gold medal for the JG13 Team Sprint. They recorded the fastest time in winning their heat and so went into the gold medal ride off as top seeds and did it all over again. Very exciting watching from the sidelines

Emily then teamed up with Angus Flood and Pierce Connor in the boys J13 team pursuit. They record the third best time to collect bronze. Emily is very happy with herself having stayed with the boys all the way. Never looked like being dropped in fact.

By the time the Masters 2 team - Carl, myself and Ben Schoefield - do our team sprint I've been in the DISC sauna/oven for over 6 hours and have already drunk all my water and sports drink.  The conditions are oppressive but it's the same for everyone of course. I've got heavy legs from the day before, Carl has a sore knee and Ben raced a crit that morning. So we're all expecting a top ride!

Carl takes off well and I get onto his wheel but we have to back off a little to make sure Big Gear Ben is on. I then shout out to Carl to GO! and he buries himself. I hang on and then do my best when I hit the front but I can just feel that I'm not as fast as I could be. After peeling off I didn't see much of Ben's lap as I was too busy trying to safely stay above the blue line at a safe speed even though I desperately wanted to slow down and get off. The results aren't posted yet but we possibly did the slowest time.

Emily and I hang around for a little while longer and watch the Mick and his pursuit team grab Bronze and Barry Woods put in two amazing sprints to give BBN a gold medal there. Then it's home time and sleep.

And on Monday when the alarm clock sounded I just rolled over and went back to bed

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