Last week I rounded off 2012 with some racing at the British Senior Track Championships. This meant leaving home barely twenty four hours after returning from the Worlds, however another little road trip with Jon and a chance to make up for missing the Junior championships due to being lay bone idle in Hospital.
I rode the Points, Scratch and Junior Madison, returning with a few decent results after a far from ideal track build up! Taking a lap in the Points race was a promising start, however I didn't quite have the legs over the mammoth hundred and sixty laps, finishing in seventh place. The academy (U23) boys pretty much ripped the field apart and with a few of them flying after their recent exerts at the Tour of Britain I was reasonably pleased to be there or there a bouts after a long season. The scratch went a little better, with another lap gain and 5th place in the big bunch kick that followed, rounding off another long day at the track!
By Sunday, and the Madison, I was very much ready to get out of the Velodrome and on my way home, however despite coming down with a cold the previous day, I was really up for one good last smash up for the year. Ollie and I (pictured above!) were keen to get on terms with Sam Lowe and Dibben early in the race, however as it turned out no one really had the legs and it turned into six match sprints between our two pairings. I knew relatively early on that I had nothing in the tank and what ensued was a relatively boring race, with only a few minor attacks between the sprints. We placed second in every sprint on the day, however were thoroughly outdone by the two older lads; Sam and Jon. It was good to end the season on a national podium, just gotta keep chasing that stripey jersey!
This week (really) rounded off the season, with a selection camp for the the 2013 Olympic Development Squad in Newport, Wales. It was good to get some Team Pursuiting back in the legs and mind, and along with a solid long road ride on Sunday morning, we had a really good camp. For now the dates are starting to hit the diary for next year and a few exciting things are coming together. A week or two rest is on the agenda, before the real hard word begins!
I would like to say a huge thank you to my coach Matt Winston for all his time, effort and hard work this year. Also to my sponsors Rapha and Condor Cycles and long-time friend John Barclay for his help throughout the year, taking me to races and always providing an ear to natter at down the phone.
I must also thank all of my family and all the mechanics and staff at British Cycling who have looked after me this year for their support, hopefully 2013 will lead to even bigger and better results and adventures. Onward and upward!