Fight the Good Fight

“It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up” – Babe Ruth
The human body is probably not designed to do any one thing continuously for 24 hours. That’s why we come readily equipped with a handy circadian rhythm.
Awesome pic of 24 Hrs of NDuro by Raewyn Knight
Almost a year ago, I was on a road trip to Rotorua for my second Moonride. It was my third 12 hour solo race and I was quietly gaining confidence exploring my personal boundaries of ultra-endurance racing. As a physician, the capacity the human body holds physically, if we are able to temper the tricks the brain plays, never ceases to amaze me and there is probably no better way to continue to surprise yourself of that than experiencing it firsthand.

The last year of racing has been all about discovering some previously hidden capacity, so it was fitting that the World 24 Hour Solo Championships were scheduled to migrate south to Australia after last year’s event in Europe at a time when I had promised myself to be on the startline of a major championship event when one returned to the Southern Hemisphere.
With the resurgence of 24 Hours of NDuro to the kiwi race calendar, there was the perfect opportunity for a practice run. It was the first time I had been that nervous about a race for a while, mainly driven by anticipation of that step into the unknown - this challenge was double the longest period of time I had ever spent on a bicycle and while I knew it was only twice as far it would be ten times as hard. Safe in the knowledge that my challenge was one of gaining experience, I was certain I was in for some tutorage with the women’s field boasting depth including ultra-endurance regulars Megan Dimozantos and Erin Greene, who have chalked up World Championship third and fifth finishes respectively over recent years.

What the hell did we just get ourselves into, Ryan?
Any pre-race hype about the women’s race was satisfied as an excitingly close clash evolved between Erin and I, which saw an intense battle gapped by a mere 15 minutes after 20 hours of racing. Support crews were equally tested to make sure bikes and brawn kept running smoothly with less than 30 minutes cumulative off the bike despite incredibly wet, muddy conditions. Both racers and crews kept the pressure on each other through 14 hours of darkness, with their efforts being rewarded by seeing two women punching through the men’s field by dawn to take control of the race overall and consolidating over 300 kilometers of racing with over 8,000 metres of climbing in under 25 hours by finish.
Erin v Kim
One lesson I learned long ago was to respect your opponent. They breed ‘em tough in the South Island and Erin is no exception to the rule. With a love for ultra-endurance racing, the girl from Dunedin strives to ride the perfect lap during even the longest events and had the ability to race to fifth the last time the World 24 Hour Solo Championships were held in Australia in 2010, just eighteen months after a pelvic fracture following a collision with a car during a training ride. With form that grabbed her podium honours in a stage of the Cape Epic multi-day stage race this year, she is sure to provide a tour de force at the World Championships in six months time.
Dunners game face - credit Shane Wetzel

I was stoked to be able to ride that close to her, be part of a race that saw the fairer sex level the ultra-endurance playing field, as well as learning some valuable lessons for Canberra when no doubt another North Island versus South Island battle will ensue. You know you have done something special when former junior World Champion and fellow 24 hour soloist, Thomas Lindup, says it was a women’s race like he had never seen in New Zealand. Here’s to the grudge match across the Tasman!

Penulis : Unknown ~ Sebuah blog yang menyediakan berbagai macam informasi

Artikel Fight the Good Fight ini dipublish oleh Unknown pada hari Monday, 22 April 2013. Semoga artikel ini dapat bermanfaat.Terimakasih atas kunjungan Anda silahkan tinggalkan komentar.sudah ada 0 komentar: di postingan Fight the Good Fight


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