After last week’s close encounter, I decided to have another stab at this series in my effort to get some early season points taken care of. Some poor timekeeping meant that we (Sangita and mum, soigneur and chauffeur) arrived just about in the nick of time, with an all out team effort to get my bike re-assembled, signed-on and dressed correctly in time for the race off.
Turns out the E/1/2/3 categories race beforehand was over-running (like last week) so there was plenty of time to stand around in the cold and be drizzled on. Eventually we were allowed on the track for a final spin round before the start. As we did so the rain and wind intensified and everyone seemed to groan as one. Going up the hill past the start/finish line for another spin round I had a weirdly strong premonition that there definitely was going to be a crash in this race, the track was greasy already, it was a big field of over 40 riders and it wouldn’t take much for something to go wrong.
As I rolled down the hill, I looked for another and shifted up, nothing, couple more clicks of the shifter and then woah, something goes snap, the back wheel locks up and fixes in place and I’m wobbling before coming to a stop. Unclipping off the bike and looking down, it turned out my rear derailleur was hanging off and wedged in my wheel spokes…closer inspection showed that it was bent beyond repair and using technical language ‘fucked’.
I had to lift the bike onto my shoulder and walk back round the rest of the circuit to the exit gate to my adoring fans. A quick point of the finger and they were made aware it was definitely game over.
So all in all, another frustrating visit to Stourport, one day I will smash it here!