June was looking to be good month, with a big stage race in Holland and some elite races in the uk, the form was looking to be coming on and I was ready for battle.
First race of the month was Tour de Lasalle in Holland, and 4 day 5 stage race. After not being abroad for a huge 7 weeks! I couldn’t wait to see the sun and actually do some real racing. We arrived after 17 hours of travelling! To be treated by sun in which me and Matt (my team mate) decided to go for a spin at 9pm as you can’t resist the sun
Arriving 2 days before the race started gave up chance to ride a few of the courses to prepare for what we were going to be racing around!
Stage one on the Thursday! The heavens opened on the way to the race and it reminded us all of home, luckily by the time the race started it held off for us for a while. The race being on one of the smaller islands in North Holland the peloton had to get a ferry to the start, the ferry being where the race would kick off from. Holding some good bunch positions it started super fast! I np power for the first 25 minutes was 405w! A few crashes split the bunch up and unfortunately I got caught behind one. Luckily I managed to keep the gap as small as possible to the end of the stage keeping myself in contention for the rest of the race.
Stage 2 was on a big fast circuit also, with a lot of road furniture the concentration levels had to be kept high for the whole race. A slight wind but not much meant nobody could split the race up across the open sections. 2 laps to go I gave it a go off the front as I knew the size of these guys I didn’t stand a chance In a bunch sprint, having to do over 35mph to even get any sort of gap made it impossible to get away but I did try and try again but ended up rolling in with the bunch for a sprint finish.
Stage 3 and 4 were on the same day, individual tt in the morning and road race in the evening. The tt was only short with 5 hairpin bends, it was an average performance for myself with power being down slightly but still had a top 30 out of over 100 riders. Stage 4 was looking good for me which the only slight incline in the whole race. I was feeling really strong and was in the 2nd group until I punctured. Again, as usual, whenever something is going well for me there’s always something to ruin it. With there being 50 rear spare wheels I was expecting to be back in the race in no time but no, every single one of the rear wheels had been used! Totally shocked and annoyed but that’s the way it goes sometimes. Out of gc as I finished with the time as the last group 7 minutes down! Frustrating but time to move onto the final day.
Stage 5 was a town centre Kermesse. I started at the front and didn’t leave the top 10 riders for the whole race, legs were on fire and I was going with every move, o was hoping that just one would stay away even towards the end but nothing would stick, this was due to there being sprint laps every 5 laps to the guys fighting for the points jersey wouldn’t let anything go! After one last big attack 5 laps to go it again came down to a bunch sprint where I finished in the bunch!
So at the moment I’m currently spending £60 every 10 days for new tubs 😂 not on a good role at all! Said this last time but maybe this long long run of bad luck will end!
Back home in the uk after a long travel I had the first Nat A criterium of the year at Ilkley. Feeling good for this as it would be my first one of these so didn’t know what to expect apart from chaos at the start!
once started it wasn’t anywhere bad like I thought was really smooth race. About 5 laps in there was a crash at the bottom corner right on the climb, this going to about 15% split the bunch in half, one half losing all momentum into the climb. Unfortunately I was in the middle when this happened and got caught up behind. After that the top 20 riders were gone but by the end of the race both groups were doing the same speed throughout so nobody was catching each other. As I knew a top result was out the bag I decided to just stay on the front and give myself a really good workout, I thought there was about 7 of us in the group but I took a look back 2 laps to go and there was a bunch of about 30 riders! Funnily enough id only seen the same 5 all race…..
After this race I’ve got a small break of racing to get 2 weeks solid training in before the next Nat A crit at Colne. Hopefully doing better than the first!
Then the biggest race of the season yet at the end of July again takes me abroad to the UCI Tour of Kosovo, a lumpy stage race ideally suited to me! If I can pull of a good result there that should set me up for next year! With all the training I’ll be doing throughout July this is a real goal of the season and I hope to have the legs to possibly get a first Professional victory.
Thanks again to all the help and support from The Lewis Balyckyi Trust Fund for getting me to these foreign races! And to the team and sponsors below!
Thanks for reading!
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Thanks to the sponsors…
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