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Junior Cycling trip to Canberra Tour

The first day we flew to Auckland and after a quick stop we jumped on a flight to Sydney. It was all jokes on the plane, with most of us being excited for the racing ahead. After a long wait for our vans we finally were off to Canberra to stay at the Australian Institute of Sport. We arrived late that night at 12am. The Thursday began with relaxing and getting our bikes ready for the time trial. This was the stage that I wasn’t looking forward to.

Friday afternoon was with us in no time. The time trial was not as bad as I thought with myself finishing 23rd. The next morning the under19s had a 110km road race. I was excited for this race as it was the ATS State Road Race Championship. This became frustrating as 15km into the race I had a puncture and the wheel wagon went straight past me. As the course went out and back, and with no I decided to jump over the other side of the road and get a wheel as the bunch came the other way. A lady who I talked to said that it was fine and she said the commissaire was happy for me to do that. So I rejoined the main peloton. Later in the race, about 40km into it, the com sent me to the back of the race and at the end gave me a 30 minute penalty. The woman who said she had spoken to the com must have misunderstood how I was to re-enter the race. I was a little angry but I still had 2 stages to go.


Sunday morning we woke up to a cold and windy day, with the morning race being a 50km road race. In the first 30km I felt fresh and wanted to go in a break, this didn’t happen and with 10km to go the peloton split and I got dropped just off the back. I ended up losing 45 seconds on the stage. The last stage was a criterium that was round a circuit purpose made for criterium racing. The race was 35 minutes long with 3 laps. It started off fast with nearly hitting 60kmh down the back straight. Halfway through the crit a break went with all the contenders on GC. It was a group of 7. They got a 25 second lead, with no one wanting to do any work. With 5 laps to go I decided to try and bridge the gap to the main group. I caught the front group with 1 lap to go and when it came down to the sprint I had nothing left in my legs. It was good to finish the tour with a good stage after the bad luck I had with the second stage.

Overall it was a good learning experience. I learnt how good the Aussies were and that I need to do more training if I want to succeed at that level. Thanks to all that helped me and the club, which has been a great hand with all the racing and fundraising that got me to where I was in such a little space of time.

Angus Findlay