Girraween B grader Crit 21/05/23
Hosted by Sunshine Coast Cycling Club
Distance: 40 minutes + 2 laps. 940m per lap
Bike of choice: Giant TCR SL, light and zippy to punch over a small climb every lap. Ridden by both Ryan Quade and Mark Westerman.
Tyre set up: Cadex Tyres - 80psi front, 90psi rear, tubeless.
Race team riders: Mark Westerman, Ryan Quade, Amarni Drake, Allan Luck
Associates: Matt Neville, David Gerrish
We had a quick team meeting to outlay today’s objective, as a club race if often more fun than serious, so we aimed to always have 1-2 riders in each break. If Ryan went out in a break and got brought back, then we would quickly send another rider out right away to keep the race alive and Giant-Qspec always at the front of the race.
Lining up at the start line, B grade had solid numbers with around 20-30 people to start the race and several other teams including Done and Dusted and Trente from Noosa.
Once the race started, we moved to the front to control the race as there is often a few jumpy riders who like to make an early attack. Staying on the front allowed us to control the speed or be there if an attack was to happen.
As the race settled in, Ryan and Amarni soon threw some heavy attacks down, each one slowly got brought back as it was still early in the race and riders were full of energy.
Around halfway through the race, Amarni threw in a heavy attack with a few riders that followed him. This quickly caused a break from the main peloton and Mark bridged across soon after and took a minute to recover. Just afterwards, Allan made a massive bridge over with Tim Hucker from Done and Dusted.
We had 3 in the break with a solid gap & the break away at this stage had about 8 people. Massive well done to Al making that bridge, it’s no easy feat catching a group who is pulling away from the main bunch.
We now had 3 riders in the front group. Ryan stayed in the main group because if he bridged across, he risked the possibility of bringing riders or the main peloton back to Mark, Armani and Allan who were leading the race.
In the leading break, Amarni was calling the shots keeping the group rolling and pace up so we didn’t get caught. We soon knew we weren’t getting caught but kept rolling at a decent pace making sure no future attacks stick.
As the race paced into the final 5 minutes, each time you did the short pinch on the course you could feel the hill taking a little more zap out of the legs each lap.
On the last lap Mark sat on the front and just cruised, while Armani shouted orders to keep the lines tight preventing any riders from overtaking on the inside. Mark was to lead Amarni out. Just before the hill on the last lap it was go time. Mark threw in a lead up the short pinch but then Amarni cramped.
Mark kept power up as a few riders started coming around the outside. Mark didn’t see Amarni come around and soon realised he cramped and wasn’t going to be able to come around. With Armani cramping Mark had to try and sprint, just missing a podium but getting rolled on the line to come 4th.
Meanwhile back in the main bunch Ryan dominated taking the bunch sprint.
A solid effort by all with some great team tactics. For our 2nd race we rode well and looked out for each other.
A great day out for the Giant QSpec Cycling Team!