In the photo: Chris Craig

In the photo: Chris Craig

Brisbane was a warmup crit after 2-3 weeks of travel and Europe and unstructured training. The course has some very technical turns (especially a sharp 90-degree turn) and definitely was expected to have lots of surges. Decided to give the 2/3 a "go" before racing the P1/2. We had a strong Mike’s Bikes presence in the race: Mathias Jacquelin, Ben Marshall, James Grady, Theo Goguely, and Arnaud Borner (plus a few more).

Here’s how we planned the race…

We had a large presence in the race, so our plan was to be aggressive and aim for a break. We would use me as the sprinter if things were still together at the end. With that, kept it simple and headed to the line ready to race.

Here’s what happened…

The race started out much faster than we expected, especially with the technicality of some of the turns along the course. The field immediately strung out for the first 15-minutes with no opportunity to launch a break. Once the field started to slow, a few teammates (myself included) launched some attacks off the front to push the field. Mathias and Ben put good efforts off the front to get the field chasing.

With a few laps to go, I was feeling good and asked Mathias to pull me up to the front. With two laps left, I was in perfect position after Mathias’ hard work to get me where I needed. Going into the last lap, I sat in as much as possible for the sprint. Everything was going to plan towards the final few corners. Prior to launching a sprint, Morgan, of Olympic Club, decided to put a dig on the front to gap the field. The rider in second was slow to respond and let a gap open up.

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By this point, we were going into the final turn towards the finish with Morgan 1-2 bike lengths gapped. By the time I got around the final turn, I launched my sprint, but Morgan already had a solid gap. I was able to sprint by the second rider, but it wasn’t enough to drive it home for the W. Overall I was happy with the result and support from the team. Was exciting to get a podium after coming back from Europe.

Takeaways…

I feel we could’ve been more aggressive in the race to try and get something to off the front. We were the team to beat and left it too much to chance at the end. In terms of my performance, I think I could’ve been more aggressive during the race to remain in the front. Also, when it came to the last lap – my regret is that I didn’t immediately get on Morgan’s wheel after the second rider let the gap open up. There was a good opportunity there to sprint around Morgan in the final meters, but I didn’t seize it. Overall – was happy