Sunday, January 22, 2012

Tour de Ranges

Tour de Ranges Victory

Auckland turned on a good day for the SRAM Tour de Ranges (presented by Ricoh) on Saturday. The race was going to be the last opportunity I'd have to test the legs prior to Tour of Manawatu next week – it was also presented by my sponsor Ricoh so I was keen to fly the flag for them.

After missioning my way to the start line via Auckland's crazy maze system of roads I arrived out at Clevedon and went about my pre race routine

The course was a nice 110 kilometre loop that included coastal views, rolling rural terrain and mountainous hill passes – all only 30 minutes from the hustle and bustle of the big city.

From the gun the attacks were thick and fast and with no one able to establish a gap the pace was on. At the 30km mark six of us managed to force our way off the front of the peleton on a slight rise and set about building a sustainable gap on the lead bunch.

Racing back towards the start finish line along the coast I managed to get a glimpse of some of the great views (in between suffering like a dog while lapping it out in the pace line) and by the time we made the turn to head back inland, six to seven guys had managed to come across to us. It was in this confusion when the pace slowed that I decided to attack and managed to get away solo along a hilly section picking up the KOM on the way.

Later on I was joined by four or five chasers for the remaining 15km run in which resulted in a constant battle of attacks and counter attacking.

In the last few km's I broke off the front and held around a 100m gap which got shut down to less than 10 meters as I crossed the line taking my first win for 2012 and Ricoh and also my first win on the Pinarello!

Big thanks to Mike, Rick, Craig and the team at Ricoh for supporting a great event like this (and me!) and also Armstrong Sport. After the race it was great to hang out with everyone at the VIP Ricoh tent and indulge in all the great hospitality from Mike and the Ricoh Auckland team.

I now have a few days of down time before heading to Palmerston North where I'll be riding the NZ Cycle Classic in the Manawatu region in the Ricoh colours.

Until then... JC

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well done Joe :)
Cheers Gabi