Second French Road Race win!!!

I can’t believe I got the chance to win again. This time at Fromental. Here’s how it went…
The early 5 man break.
On the first climb there’s a break of four going clear. I jump across. We’re working, but we’re not working really hard, yet we still go clear. At the end of the first lap we have 25seconds. I’m just tapping through trying to go unnoticed. There’s two St Junien riders, two from another club, and me. One of the St Junien contributes nothing, he looks like he’s only just hanging on anyway, so I don’t worry about him. The other St Junien rider looks strong, but it’s the two from the other club that look the bigger danger.

The laps go by, now we’re on lap 4 with two to go. The two stronger riders have started putting in soft attacks to see who’s got the legs. I’m feeling good, but playing it cool. There’s a climb around the back of the course, not long, but long enough and steep enough to make legs sting. One of the stronger riders puts in a proper attack, his mate, sitting second in line, sits up. I jump hard, and chase, we are away.

Now there’s just the two of us, we’re motoring, and for the first few minutes I’m thinkin’ we’ve cracked it, but then I get the feeling that my ‘friend’ is not giving his all. What’d’ya know, here comes his buddy! Now there’s me, and the two of them.

On the next lap they mess me about. If I’m on the back, one will let a gap go, If I’m in the middle, the one behind attacks, and if I’m on the front, I’m doin all the work. I decide that working hard is preferable to constant attacks so I spend most of the time on the front going fast enough to keep them happy. I’ve got plenty of miles in my legs, I dont mind.

Out onto the last lap. With about 3 km to go I put in three hard attacks one after the other, but I can’t shake them. This is gonna be tricky. With 1 km to go, I’m on the front, and I swing across to get off the front. One rider rolls through then stalls, while the other attacks. I’m having to back up around one wheel to chase the other. But I’m being held in, as the blocking rider brakes hard forcing me toward the grass!

In trying to give his team mate a hand he’s given me the wind up I need, a red mist comes up. I come to an almost stop to get around his back wheel then I jump hard to chase after his mate. I catch him with 500metres to go, I go straight past, meanwhile the blocking rider is chasing me. There’s a slight ‘S’ bend into the finish straight, I make sure I use all the road, through the final dip, out of the saddle, and sprint…… Gotcha’s 5 lengths clear… take that punk!!!

I’m directed off the finish into a little side street where I try to catch my breath whist trying not to throw up. That was hard!

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