Monday, 23 February 2015

Plages Vendéennes - Challans

The second last race of the Plages Vendéennes was held in Challans and looked like it was going to be a tough race again with some bordures and even a few small hills. 

It was tough, however it was not a good race in many ways. Let me explain. 

Firstly the break went quite early and then the peloton was controlled by a few teams so the speeds were not high, thus making it super hard for me and many other riders to move up in the peloton as everyone was bunched up across the whole road, leaving no gaps. Also I felt a bit sick and had a hard time concentrating (hopefully it's nothing though).

Secondly there was a long straight road that we first rode down with a super fast tailwind, then came onto a small circuit with a few climbs, turned around and rode back onto the same straight road into a blazing headwind. This made for a quite boring race as no one was stupid enough to attack into the headwind. 

Even on the circuit through the finish line where many times the peloton could've been broken in the wind, no one really committed to go on and split things up. 

As we went onto our third big lap for the day, the rain came down on us and it went from a very pleasant day on the bike to a freezing hell. I was shivering all over, my feet were cold and stiff and even with electronic gears I had difficulties changing them because my fingers were so frozen. The dirt on my glasses preventing me from seeing properly didn't help. 

The rain didn't last long, but by the time it ended many riders had abandoned already although the peloton took it pretty easy. 

The break was also caught during the short rainfall, but we headed onto the headwind section soon after so no attacks went clear. I would've preferred to suffer in a break ahead but as I saw many other riders fail terribly in attempt to latch off the front group I decided it's no use and stayed in the peloton. 

On the 3 small circuits things started to light up but I was still feeling sick and my legs had absolutely no punch in them so I had to bide my time, tried to force my way to the front a couple of times, but failed to do so. 

It ended in a bunch sprint and as our sprinter for the day had abandoned earlier, unfortunately we had no one in the top ten. 

For now I'll try to recover as much as possible for the last race and most importantly not get sick. 

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