Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Stage 4 - Ingkeereke Commercial Mountain Bike Enduro, Alice Springs
Stage 4 was the longest stage of the week. I always thought this course would decide who wins for the week. It was a tough call deciding to either stay in the group and have people to work with or trying to get away early on during the more technical sections. In the end Andy, Aido and I came through the 25km drink station together as no one could get away. From here there was a 17km cycle path where we just cruised and a group of around 6 riders caught up to us. There were a couple of riders who attacked off the front while Andy, Aido and I let the boys fighting for 4th and 5th battle out to try and make some time. At the 55km drink station we still had a group of around 6. At about 65km the tracks started to get a little more technical and I moved to the front and increased the pace a little. I took a few risks down the final 2 downhills and overtook the two riders who had ridden off the front. I had a small gap at the stage and put the power down. Not knowing how far it was to the finish and with Andy quickly bridging the gap it was an easy decision to sit up and pedal sensibly. There were a couple of obstacles on our way to the finish which gave the other boys a chance to attack and almost get away. Heading into the BMX track I managed to sprint to get the first corner around the outside of the track, Andy pushed passed on the next straight. I pushed passed on the next corner onto the BMX track and had the lead through the gates. Andy started to go high on the first corner, I took the inside line which was heaps quicker. Heading into the second corner I was ahead and tried my luck on the inside line again. After I decked it, Aido and Andy rolled past, took the time bonuses and I think I am now sitting in 3rd around 1 min behind Andy.