Thursday was the first of the East London Velo run Summer Series races at Hog Hill and the National B status Elite, Cat 1 & 2 never fails to attract a strong field. With six elites signed on at the start, it was looking to be a good race and I was really looking forward to riding on a hilly course after a few flat ones in the bank.
Rhys went with a couple of early moves, we were one of the best represented teams with Clem and Alex also racing and the big man from Wales took the impetus to make sure we were present in any of the early breaks. Alex also put in some early work, pressing on up the hill and hurting some legs at the back of the bunch.
About halfway through the Hour and Fifteen minute race nothing was really going, it was pretty windy on the bottom half of the circuit and although it split slightly a couple of times up the hill nothing really stuck. Coming into the sharpest corner of the circuit I found myself well placed and with the pace slow enough that I could use my Under 16 gears to some effect I decided to put a dig in. Putting my head down and just avoiding clipping my pedal into the corner, I looked back to see I had opened up a healthy lead. I pressed on for a couple of laps and with the bunch really stalling I had opened up a nice lead, however in the back of my mind I knew I couldnt stay away on my own so kept of the gas a little. Soon four riders came across and I sat up to wait, before I knew it Clem was just behind the group and then there where five.
Fast forward to three laps to go and the elite Corley Cervelo rider in the group put in a big dig, he opened up a good gap and Clem and I had to work hard to bring him back just before the bell. Coming into the sprint some inexperience on Clem and my part meant we didnt get a leadout going and nulled our advantage of having two riders in the break, we ended up coming in third and fourth. Good results but could have been a lot better!