Wednesdays at Wakefield Park 2014 Race Series - Week 4 - Final Race of the Series

The final race of the series seemed to arrive really quickly and despite the rain coming down before the event things cleared up just in time for the races to start.  The extra precipitation made the trails a little tackier and some of the bridge crossings a little greasy but all told it made for a fun and exciting race.  Most of all it was much, much cooler and not very humid!  Perfect conditions for an Englishman!

I made my way to the start full of excitement for the final race and hoping to get a good start, I lined up just behind the front row hoping to catch a break and get up the start hill on the inside line.  At 6.55pm the Experts set off followed by a few minutes wait until the starter set the Sport category away.  My hopes of a good start were quickly dashed as I got sandwiched into the middle of the gravel track right into a rut, which had been made worse by the rainfall and lost a lot of my speed.  

Getting forced into the rut - I'm in the black jersey with black & grey camo shorts
I managed to get going again and gained a spot or two back before diving into the singletrack.  Quickly heading into the woods, it was clear I was riding a little quicker than a few people in front of me so I made sure to pass them at the first opportunity.  Save for a foot down moment when the rider in front of me failed to clear an obstacle, I felt like lap one went smoothly and I put in a good time.

Into lap two the field had spaced out and I could concentrate on my own ride but without the pack in front to chase, I was conscious I kept pushing hard.  I can definitely feel my stamina has improved as the race series has gone on and I didn't get passed until the climb at the end of lap 2.

Lap 3 at this stage was just a formality, what was particularly pleasing was that I was almost 2 and a half laps in before I got passed by the leading experts, comparing this to week 1 where I was getting passed shortly into lap 3, I knew was on track for a faster time.  Heading into the final wooded section, I checked my stopwatch and knew instantly that if I kept up my pace I would complete the course in under an hour, I came to the final creek crossing and received a big cheer from a crowd of racers who had stuck around after their 6pm start and were celebrating the end of the series, I powered up the final hill and crossed the line.

Big big thanks to the Potomac Velo Club for such an enjoyable series!