Personal tools
You are here: Home Members nathanlarkin So you wanna be a Track Star!
Document Actions

So you wanna be a Track Star!

Me and My efforts to becoming a Track Rider.


Wow.... Such a long time... And so much has happened...

But alas I really don't have that much to say...

Well I have started the big comeback.


It's taken quite a long time, and a lot of emotions, before I decided to make sure I really wanted to do this again. Something snapped and I finally wanted to do this again, after hating it for so long..


Glad to be back on the horse so to speak, and have a long way to go before I get close to where I was..


Teschner Crit at Albert Park.........

and how I got 3rd in a race I thought I could just make the top 10..

On a pretty cold Saturday morning I made my way down to Albert Park for a race I thought not only I had no chance, but thought if I could make the top 10 would be pretty happy.

Jot to the track around 7:15 in the am with not a breath of wind, but a balmy 6 deg showing on the thermostat. Start by grabbing bike; wheels; bits and bobs ready to go register. Rolling to the start line, no nerves just waiting to go was all I could think at this time (hurry up 8am). Once registered numbers were pinned and transbonder in place (electronic timing YAY) I head out for a few siting laps and warm up. Meet up with a couple of guys I knew and just tootled around looking for places to make moves, or if need be attacks on the field.

From the button the pace was........... well pretty comfortable. No one realy wanted to do anything major, and everyone was watching the others kill themselves on the front. I sat about 6 wheels back waiting for some excitement.................. and none came. After 20min or so of sitting in I decide to hit the front and ramp up the pace. I was wondering if anyone had the guts to come along for a breakaway.

I took the group from 31 k/Hr to 40 in the blink of an eye and charging right up the extreme left of the straight. Looking for riders to help I hit the turn and jumped out again at pace, flick of the elbow and none came through with any help. I moved to the other side of the trac and again flicked the elbow and still not a follower to come through to do a turn. I had to pull to thr right of track and tap the brakes to get back on the end of the field to recover.

It was at that point I decided to sit in, wait, and charge at the end.

I sat on the back until 3 laps to go, and decided to make some spots at every turn to make sure I was near the front when the sprint went. Heading into the last turn I was in 6th wheel and looking good to finish in the top four.

Much to my surprise the the lead out came at a pace I was able to follow. After shooting past 4 riders, and having to shoot left a little because the lead out man pulled into my way, I was in 2nd place and chasing down first but running out of legs quite fast. Hitting the line I saw a Hawthorn jersey just to my right about half a wheel in front, so I managed third place in the first ever open Criterium I have every ridden.

I learnt alot riding this race and there are alot of things I could have done better. But everything I learnt will be place in the next time I roll out with a number on my back and a ich in my leggs.....


When is it gonna be my time............

Filed Under:

Or how to split yourself into 20 and still survive the carnage.

Time takes it toll on everyone, even me sometimes. I have been spread pretty thin as of late, but seem to be making it to everything and keeping up on what I need to do. Even training is getting a bit easier with better time management, and having great frineds like Bev; Darren "Bang Bang" Rodgers; Thomay Michahablahablahabla to ride with on Wednesday Nights in the cold and wet...

The aboc Saturday Junk Run is starting to take shape again with a few more riders begging for time and wanting to come along. This is something that I thought would never really go much further as interest was lost and time became a problem, but Staurday mornings a small groupetto of fool hardy souls join each other for a quick 40-60 klm depending on your geography. As the group is getting bigger, I will now start to publisize the ride again, and hope the group gets even bigger. We will still have to make the hard decissions in really rainy weather, but most will have my number and a quick call will find out if the ride is on or off.

With finalization of my Level 1 just around the corner, I am pretty exited. It has been a pretty drawn out process, but I am on the home stretch and can see the light. As with everything life tends to rear its ugly head, and some things get left behind. With only a Bike Fit and a First Aid certification left to do it shouldn't be to long now.

I have a new baby at home as well........... An Avanti Cadent Team...... Not one of those things that screams; eats; poos; sleeps...... Sounds alot like me really. I have only taken it for one quick belt around the Yarra Blvd, but I am VERY VERY IMPRESSED. After a few more rides I should have a better handle on what the bike is like and I will right a full report then.

Racing coming up for me will be Teschner Grand Prix. This looks to be a pretty hard day, but will be great fun. If I can get a bit more road racing miles in the leggs, track sould be a bit easier over summer.


Good Lord I need help.....

No really please help me I'm sick.....

Don't really know how this happened but I have yet another track bike almost built in my "Bike Hole" (as there is no room to put the car in it shall be re-named). All I need is an Italian BB and the pics will appear, although there are many of it around already.........

I have also been conned yet again in doing the Vocals at the Preston Junior Track Carnival so if you've got nothing to do on Sunday 28th Feb please drop down and watch some great racing by the kids.

Sunday the 28th is a real busy day for me as I not only have the Preston Cycling Club, there is also Brunswick CC Rock and Roller Racing on the same day, and after those I am running the DISC session on my lonesome. I will be running around like a mad man, but I know it will be RAD fun....



Now you've gone and done it tiger........

Filed Under:

Tour de Flavour Crit

Well now i really have gone and done it. I have entered my first Crit in................................................................. Well really that long i have forgotten how to even change gears on a road bike.

So now it's time to hit those pedals and get moving.


Fathers Day DISC Session

Filed Under:

Please read!!!!!

Hey there aboc'ers.

Could you please let either myself or Carl know if you will be or won't be attending the DISC training Session on Sunday 9th September. I know this is Fathers Day and would like to guage the number of riders that will attend to see if it is worth running.


Nathan Larkin


I have been ordered off the Velo for a small time!!

Filed Under:

But look out in August....... I will be screaming.......

I have suffered from the Colds and Flu and work in "Piggy" central, and alas I have sufered a bit of a head cold and can't seem to shake the tail of it away. I have trained, and trained, but seem to have taken a step back.... But just a small one. In a matter of 2 weeks of being sick, I have managed to lose about 4 weeks of fitness, and that really shits me (sorry for the language)..  But it really does.

I struggle at the moment with efforts, and find myself in a lather of sweat only just over 15 min on the Ergo. So now I need to make a decission, either dig a deeper hole, our take it easier and get back to basics for a couple of weeks............ So I have chosen the later and decided to take a step back and gone back to the start, considering I have plenty of time (remember I am aiming for December).

So back to BASE for a little while..........


Back from a Sickness

Filed Under:

But keeping as fit as possable...

Like Carl i have had a vit of a head cold as of late (no we hav'nt been kissing....... No really) and have been a little flat. I took a week off racing and headed out to the Velo last night just to do one race and head home. I started to warn up and realized there was no way in hell i sould be there. After a mear 3-4 laps i was gasping for breath and need to stop and take a drink.... "Still not ready" was about the only thing i could think, but i will give the first race a crack anyway. I found a few good wheels, didn'y get knocked off (not from the lack of trying form the other riders) and managed to get to the bell before pulling out of the race..... I was trashed and a pool of sweat, so i know that next week will be a little easier.

I brought out some new Bike Bling to show off a little..... I like new toys, but this one has a purpose. I have found it really hard to get my position right, but with the ergostem everything is very easy. With the exchange rate at the moment, they are still pretty $$$$$, but a real investment if you want something to help.


Training and Racing....

Filed Under:

I seem to be getting faster??

Last Thursday night at DISC saw me get some very good results, and show that my training is going in the right direction. I managed a 4th in the Scratch and 2nd in the Motorpace. We don't talk about the Points as my whole goal there is not to get lapped.

Seeing me get closer and ever so closer to the pointy end of the fields in these races fills me with confidence that when we get to X-Mass, i will be going as quick as possable. The only thing i am looking at really doing this year is the X-Mass Handicaps and maybe even the Austral or Melbourne Cup on Wheeels.

These are old races steeped in history, and i am gonna tray and get my name in there somewhere..........................


DISC racing

Filed Under:

When you need to try and get faster, Thursday Motor Pace will break your legs off.

Well Thursday Night at DISC is not only getting faster, but harder to go up in grades as well. I have been riding really well and holding my own in most fields of riders. I have ducking between C and D grade depending on the fileds and riders. I have managed to stay in D the last couple of weeks, keeping out of trouble and near the pointy end of the field. 

Last week i took a hard fought win in the Motorpace, but this week is a completely diferent story.

I rode well, and kept pace by following wheels and getting in my steady rythum. I seem to have found a gear that really agrees with my style of riding. The  races were fast and i managed to get into the first 6 or 7 in the Scratch and won the last sprint in the Points. The Motorpace was unbeliveably fast and i only lasted to the last 3 laps and had to pull out.

The good from the night was not just how well i rode, but how i felt riding all the events. I have never thought i could complete all events with not as much as a heavy pant and now think i need to put a bit more tactical presence in so i can take a few more points and win more races.

Next weeks mission; top 4 in Scratch; more than 5 Points; WIN THE MOTORPACE.... 


Saturday Group Ride....

Filed Under:

Yes 2 is more than 1 so that's a group....

Well on a Cold Windy Saturday morning, I would like to thank Bev for joining me on the first aboc Group Ride.

We headed out at 9ish into something that could only be described as dreadfull weather, but had a great little time of it all. We managed to knock out Glen Waverley to Mordialloc and back in a respectable hour and change. Once I take out my travel to and from Glen Waverley, we looked to do around 40K.

I am gonna be kinda busy over the next couple of weeks so it is going to be hard to keep it up. But as soon as my scedual frees up, i will post when the next will run.

But if anyone wants to get a ride in, I would love to see a few in Preston for a trip back next Saturday Afternoon at around 4pm..... More details later..

DISC Thursday Night

Filed Under:

Remember 70's disco "Ohhhhhh what a nigt"....

Well I was thanked at the end of the evening of racing for "one of the loadest and most exciting D Grade races".

I started out in C Grade, but there seemed to be something different about the grade. They were absolutely Stomping and it was some of the fastest racing I have seen in a long time. I was asked if I wanted to drop back to D Grade and I gladly took the oppurtunity for something a little more civilaised.

The Points was as I expected it to be. I rode as hard and long as I could, and kept up pretty well compared to how I was riding. I finnished the race well within the riders, and not to far really from getting into the points if I could have gotten a bit closer to the front earliier.

But that brings us to the Motor Pace. I have ridden many of these, but this was a very different race. It started out as normal. The bike pulled out into the throng of riders waiting to see who gets on the bike first. I was right at the back of the field as I did a pretty sneaky head count and saw that if I started last, I would be on the bike with 3 laps to go and in a very good position. That was the plan, and like all plans it went wrong...........................

With about 6 laps to go, i started to notice that we were slowing ddown a little. A gap had started to appear 2 back from the bike, and it was getting bigger by the second. By the time we got around to 5, the gap was at least 40 mtrs and getting bigger and I started to panic. I shout at the riders in front to go around, or et the girl off the front who was slowing us down. All of a sudden my call to arms got everyone going. We had to bridge the gap and, get back into the fight. I managed to get a pretty good wheel and held it rigt tiill we caught the 2 on the bike. 4 laps to go and i was in 5th wheel. The rider on the bike pulled off and left me in 4th wheel with half a chance at 4 to go, then for some reason the next rider pulled off and i was in 3rd wheel with three to go. It was then that I thought not what position I could finnish, I new I could win. 2 to go and the bike is still kicking along at around 40K/hr, and I was looking at where and when I was going to make my move.

Bike pulls of and we head to the bell. Out of the first turn the move from the second rider dose not come. He simply moves to the side and up to the blue line, and leaves me a big hole. I start stomping on the pedals, looking to make a move in the turn for home. I make the gap and I am on the leader and still have a little ground to make up. As we go through the back turn I hear the screaming and cheering urging me on to the finnish. I keep stomping the pedals up and down as fast as I could, making sure I was almost on the red line and leaving enough room in case soemthing went wrong.

But that never happend. I hit the line a wheel in front to screaming and cheering in the front straight. It was one of the best races I have not only riddden, but one of the best Club Races seen at DISC for a while.

The hardest $10 I have ever earnt.....................................


For those wanting some road K's

The Saturday or Sunday morning rides are about to start again..

For those looking to do some extra K's over the darker months, and need a bit of a hend to get motivated, i am doing about 50 to 100 k's on either Saturday or Sunday mornings.

These are basically "junk mile" rides to help out those who need some extra base, and just really want to go out and ride with a bunk of people.

Just drop me an E-Mail if you want to join up and have a laugh....

So it has started again....

Filed Under:

The pain has begun in prep for the X-Mas Handicaps!!

Well after only three or four days off the bike, the decission was made. I am putting cash away now, and slowly picking up bits and pieces i will need to do the WHOLE X-MAS CARNIVAL CIRCUIT!!

For those that have never done it, or seen it, it begins in Horsham and finnish's in Shepparton about 4 or 5 days later. The racing is fast and hard, but you really need to be able to ride a very strong handicap and that's where my focus lies now.

I have started to do all the BASE work now. This is the hardest thing, beacause it is all done on race gears and done over 2-5 min intervals. I am starting to feel a bit flat already and it has only been 2 weeks!! The bonus is that when it comes to move focus, i will be absolutely firing and ready to go o the next level.

So off i go back to the Road and when it is to much the Ergo will get a workout...


Almost another year done

Filed Under:

Now where did i put that beer??

With another year of racing almost over, it's time to think about some x training and where and what i want to do next year.

So after Shepparton on the 21st, i will take 2 weeks to decide what it is i am looking to do, but i think there is a few more K's i will need to do...


To hot to do anything

Filed Under:

But tonight i better do something, cause the 31st is just 2 weeks away.

I have been training up my endurance a little as of late to try and get over the line in a Handicap or Two if i get the chance. MAX efforts over 10 and 15 min with lots of seated and standing 10-15 sec MAX thrown in for good measure have made sure that i am kinda tired and need a little easy work to keep ticking over. I have been riding the Fixie as much as possable with a tiny 68" gear to keep spinning those legs and the extra K's seem to help.

But the heat stopped me in my tracks yesterday!! I had planned on racing at DISC last night and just couldn't find the strength to get on the bike and do 1 lap. DISC is no place for a summer race as it is real stuffy and hot, and there was no way you were getting me on a bike there last night, even the line judges were swetting it out.

So tonight in Air Con Comfort (my bedroom) i will snap out 3 x 15 min MAX and fall into bed wondering "When will this all be worth it. I know, when i place in my heat for The Austral Wheel Race".



Happy New Year to all....

Filed Under:

Bendigo was a fizzer.......... But i should do better the next time.......

Been a long time since i raced an open, and i remember why you need to try and get a good grading from the Handicapper. Well i was put in with many of the A grade riders from Thursday Nights at DISC in the likes of Turbo, Mr Poole, Peter Ganns, and the list goes on. This wqas ment to be a D Grade field!!

So i raced 1 Scratch race and 1 Handicap. There was another Scratch to come at the end of the night but i will get into why i didn't do that later. So from the gun inthe scartch the heat was on and i was out the back pretty quick. I think i hung in there for about 4 of the 8 laps. They were moving and i just couldn't hold the back of the field. The handicap i was given 240 over the 2000 mtr distance and thought that was pretty fair in these kinda fields . I would like to that Jamie Goddard for the great push as i was in the first 4 riders and held that position for my turn on the front. We were hammering along and again the actual pace of the riders was to much for me to bear. I lasted the first 2 laps of 4 and then i was out the back again, trying to hold on and not get lapped.

The reason i didn't stay for more racing, well there were a few really bad crash's in the junior grades and the racing was running really late. My handicap heat was run at 10 ish pm at night!! They had to cancell a whole set of heats and finals for all the riders which was a shame.

So at about 10:30 pm i  went back to the Caravan park to my wife and kids for a good nights sleep.

It was a great experiance and next year i think i might try and do the full week of them.



Peaking at just the right time is hard.......

Filed Under:

But I think I might have managed it..

Racing Thursday nights at DISC has been great for me as of late. I have been slowly creeping to the fronts of the field most weeks, and keeping up with a few of the faster legs in D grade. Over the last few weeks it has been getting faster and faster with the "Ring In's" down for Revolution or the Christmas Carnivals that are happening very soon.

I managed to enter myself into Bendigo on the 30th and have been focusing solely on getting my legs ready for the Handicaps. I have been doing LOTS AND LAOTS of 60 and 90sec MAX Efforts to get the power more linear and hopefully increasing my sprint length.

With my first ever place (3rd in the Motor Pace) at a Thursday Night race at DISC, I think i might be just about to peak at the right time. I feel really good and have kept up the training pressure, as for some reason I respond better training hard and raceing than raceing at the end of a recovery.

So i now look forward to racing Bendigo with the knowledge i might be a chance to make my final!!!!!!!


PS: I now to have a secret weapon!!!


Good Luck to those at Metro Champs

Chin up and FAST LEGS

For those at the Metros on Saturday and Sunday, i wish you all good luck and fast legs. I am going to try and get there Sunday after work for a bit of a look.


Base fitness is starting to come back.....

Filed Under:

But still a fair way off at the moment..

Well today was the first time i have ridden into work for a long while. I took it real easy (well as easy as you can in a 20 knot head wind) and managed to do  2hr 20min for the 40 k's to Preston from Che Larkin.

On checking my data for the ride an average of 18.7 k/hr and a HR of 147 means i was just over my E1 HR for the ride. Pretty good for a 99kg sprinter who has struggle for time on the bike with sickness and a bad knee.

Now i look forward to a few more rides like that so as to improve my racing. Now that my Power and Strength are up where i like, i just have to get that endurance going.

Powered by Plone CMS, the Open Source Content Management System

This site conforms to the following standards: