Aug 17th saw a team of six riders of the GBTx cycling squad come together. Striving for gender equality or blind luck (you choose) three men (John Leveson and Will Laughton and me) and three women (Ottilie Quince, Mel Slaney and Di Higman) formed the team. Di and Posh Will were making their debut at a European Games with Will at 27 representing his country at cycling for the first time having previously been a world class rower before catching leukaemia. He really should be more careful…
John Leveson and his family had arrived a few days earlier and had rescued an infamously undiplomatic Nordic cyclist by lending him some Zloty to get in to town to find a cash point. John’s generosity was repaid by our friend telling him his new Scott Foil was a piece of crap and, should he choose to investigate further, he would find independent confirmation of this on the Cervelo website. Who needs friends eh?
Monday saw us do a recce of the course – a 4k slightly lumpy circuit on open roads with really fast left hander - 1 lap for the time trial (gulp) and 5 for the road race. The organisers still think making the distances short helps us poor invalids but then none of them have ever ridden a pursuit distance time trial or an elbow to elbow circuit race at 30mph.
As ever, it was great to see some old friends and new faces. European transplant cyclists aren’t that common a breed so whilst we might be rivals for 40 mins on the bike we are friends for the rest of the year.
Behind the break, Levers sprinted for his second bronze medal of the games.
Last year Mel Slaney was quicker that the Swede in the time trial at the World Games but a difficult year saw her drop out of the medals this time. There is no doubt she will be back to winning ways next season.