A word on minor places

By May 28, 2016 Cycling

There is nothing more I love than catching up with the cycling highlights on Eurosport, but I do have one complaint.

As the riders compete for the top 10, outside the podium, they are “fighting for minor places”.

Having never been through what a professional experiences in a Grand Tour, I can only speak from my own racing experiences.

When I roll out in a 200-strong peloton and suffer so much for my top 10 or 20 I find it hard to tell my broken body and mind that I was only fighting for a minor place.

Don’t get me wrong, I want to win too, but this blog goes out to every cyclist who gives it their all, suffers and fights to the finish for every place and every second.

Today in my 140k race in Castellon, Valencia we had 4 climbs to face, so it was always going to be a tough day.

The race blew apart on the first climb, the second, third and on the last (cat 1), well, I suffered lots.

I just stayed within sight of the lead group and caught them through the cars on the descent.

I had been working on the front with some teammates for the Valencia champion, also on our team, on the run-up to the climb.

So my legs already hurt. The race finished on a steep and short climb where I pretty much exploded but put in everything to get my 26th place.

Let’s just say I laid down for a while after crossing the line!

I’m always massively impressed when the workhorse domestiques come in near the frontrunners in professional races.

Sometimes they even fight it out for results, because their placings are important for their palmarés and future contracts.

Put another way, to win a race you need to be in the top 1% , execute your strategy well, you probably need a bit of luck too.

This is why most “normal” cyclists win a handful of races – it’s so damn hard!

Keep up the hard work and I’m sure a win is just around the corner for many of us.

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