Mt Crosby, I have decided, is a fu*king gruelling course. On par with Illanbah when you're dying on the climbs!
The start strait consisted of a grass climb, creeping up to an off-camber singletrack descent past the start finish, then u-turning into yet another nasty edge-of-saddle climb.
Eventually, after a few more steep switchbacks, the course turn back onto the grassy road, a few hundred metres from the first turn off, and pins it down a long fireroad/rutten/grassy descent.
From there, it's all up hill—on grassy double-track. While not steep, the slow grass hill is annihilating, and is followed by a nasty rock garden, some 'snakes and ladders' chutes, and some sandy/rocky off camber singletrack before the final few fireroad/double track creek crossings that bring you back to the start/finish.
For a 6km course, the climbing is mind-numbing. Starting off well—Connie Silvestri and I fought it out up the first climb while the rest of the ladies field lagged a few hundred metres in the first minutes. I gained pole-position into the singletrack—a good move as I gained a gap, until I cam unstuck up one of the steep switchbacks.
Maintained my lead, seeing stars, until the fireroad, where she blasted past me. kept behind her up the hell-climb, she pulled ahead a bit though I caught up to her in the technical snakes and ladders.
Holding on was busting my lungs, she had a few seconds gap through the first lap. I tried to move forward, but was forced to settle into my own rhythm in order to not blow up.
I was smashing into stuff left right and centre today, and wasn't riding very proficiently at all!
I was surprised to come in, 5 minutes in arrears, in second place with Jo a few minutes behind me.
Fellow KOMrade, Aido Lefmann (aka: Sweepee) managed to smash the field, taking out a strong Mark Frendo in order to grab the win.
Men's podium: L—R, Glenn Stewart, Mark Frendo, Aiden Lefmann, Dave Whitney and Simon Freidrikson.
KOMrade Glenn 'Glenny Boy' Stewart also rode well despite lacking the training recently due to uni and lady obligations.
KOMrade Matty Dall also rode strong in the B-grade men, and proudly proclaimed that he 'wasn't overtaken by any stupid-kook bike 29ers'. Ha!
Thanks also to Donna 'DH' Dall for feeding and keeping us all upright!
Oh the pain, the lung busting, leg quashing pain. But it's over now, so I can remember it with fond memories, the painful bit fading...