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The Road Race

Posted: 14/9/2008

Hi All

Well my events are now over and it is a real relief to be able to kick back now the pressure is all off. I only have 2 days here before I have to fly home. There is lots to do with packing up bikes, doing washing, watching some live paralympic sport and trying to recover from the road race yesterday.

I was really happy with my ride yesterday and enjoyed the experience more than I did my track events this week. I don't know if it was my more relaxed approach but I had fun.

My race plan was to try and stay with the bunch as long as possible and then see what happened. With the big hill in the early part of each 12km lap I knew that would be where I would struggle. I had to wave goodbye to the bunch on the 2nd of 5 laps. The pace was very high from the start with the lap time just over 18 minutes for the 12km loop or about 40kph. After the bunch went away I kept riding alone for about 5km, I saw a bunch coming up behind me so I waited for them. Our little group of 4 then continued to dice it out with the portugese athlete being the most active and regularly attacking to split the group.

Every lap we would cross the start line together, I would attack off the dam wall and take more speed from them off the carpet area to carry momentum up the hill. They would come past me on the hill and it would take about another 4km of the lap for me to get back to them. then we would ride together until the descent into the finish where I would shake them loose through the corners and onto the carpet where they would catch up again. I quite liked this pattern as I had the advantage of the descent before the finish to beat them to the line. We dropped one of our group with 2 laps to go and then another on the hill of the last lap. So it was just me and the athlete from Portugal left. We gave each other the thumbs up with about 4km left. The finish went to plan well for me with an attack just before the descent shaking him loose and then holding him off on the carpet to win the sprint for 21st place.

I am happy with my performance in this race and it gives me the desire to do some more road racing in the future.

So now it is back to packing up and working out what to do with the 36 odd hours I have left in Beijing. Today is the last day of competition for the cyclists with the tandem road races. Team staff have given us a 10pm curfew so there won't be any partying going on.

Well that's all for now.


4 Comments Posted

The Powells | Monday, 15 September 2008 8:19:14 AM
Well done Micheal, relax, enjoy time now to look forward to the baby.
Nicholas, Mark & Lyndie
Alex McCole (nee England) | Monday, 15 September 2008 3:50:33 PM
My 4 year old boy , Finn, stood up at kindy last Wednesday (10/9) and proudly told the story of his second cousin Michael Milton as he showed a couple of articles we had taken out of the newspaper about your Bejiing campaign. Well done Michael. We have been following your journey over the years and deeply admire your strength and determination. You have become a great parenting tool. I often use you as an example of what you can achieve if you give it a go and your best.
All the best for the birth of your second in November.
By the way we also have a red head similar age to Matilda. Her name is Bridget.
Take care and say Hi to Jenny for me.
Alex McCole (nee England)
Class K/1/2 Ballimore Public School | Tuesday, 16 September 2008 2:16:13 PM
Hi Michael!
You're a real champion! You did really well in all your races. We cheered you on in your races.We bet you can't wait to see Matilda and Penni. We hope you had a nice flight back to Australia.
Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi!
Hailey, Hayley, Joe, Larissa, Lucy, Owen, Sally
Mark Falconer | Tuesday, 16 September 2008 7:06:40 PM
I have been following your progress and I have been looking forward to your Beijing campaign since 60 minutes introduced you to my family. I am a cyclist also and have been racing for years if you ever want to train in the Blue Mountains I would love to ride with you. Hold your head high mate as you have shown so much courage. I was once told 'the thrill is not just in winning but its the courage to join the race' I admire your courage and hey with the limited amount of time to put this all together for Beiging, YOU SMASHED IT!! Well done Kindest Regards Mark Falconer