Sam Downing Crit Race

The Scottish Criterium Championships

Sam Training

My day started at 05:30am so me and dad could get the half six ferry to Oban. We got breakfast on the ferry it consisted of 3 sausage sandwiches.

We then drove to Erskine and I slept in the car.

When we arrived I went to sign on not much happened except I got my numbers and had my gears checked, but during gear check they stuck a bit of gaffa tape to my frame and made the bike look rather ugly I thought.

I then got ready to warm up by riding around a Morrison’s car park. This in itself was a good challenge as there are so many one way roads that car drivers were honking there horns and shouting in the car as I cycled past them going the correct way and the wrong way, although they could have just been shouting encouragement at me and trying to get me psyched up.

By now, it was time to race so I went on to the course and got used to it. Something I did notice was the fact that everybody would fight and even slow down to go over the lowest part of the curve. I knew that would be my big advantage point so I would jump straight off the curve and also meaning I would be able to move up the field by about 3 seconds each lap.

After a few warm up laps it was time to race. The commissaries said something and I ignored him because they make up too many rules. I then heard a whistle and we were all off.!

A fast pace from the start, people were falling from the peloton all the time they then started to form a group behind. in which the main field had caught up 10 mins in this was where the action happened as we caught them up 3 guys had snuck themselves through this mass of about 15 cyclists leaving me on the other side then they sprinted away and I was left for good with one other guy.

By the time we got through, me and this chap worked together to try to catch them up and whenever it was his turn at the front to slip stream the speed fell. I knew it was down to me. every time we came to the curb we would jump over it bringing us closer to the leaders but then I would need to let the other chap take the lead and he did do as hard work as me so I would have to settle for fourth place unfortunately provided I out sprinted him at the end which I did in spectacular style.

Later I found this chap throwing up at the side of the course moaning on how I had pushed him too hard and how I had started singing to him on the last few laps. I laughed.

We then came home and I fell asleep in the car.

Written by Sam, edited probably by Jim (that in itself is a worry…)