So here’s the first race report in way too long. What, with coordinating our ToMR trip and the Beverley Race, Race-land has been busy and dropped the ball on sharing our members’ racing stories.
This weeks’ episode comes from Corrie Fillmore, SPR Club member riding for the BikeBookings.com team (spoilers – she won!).
The new course in Dwellingup for the Peel Classic (formerly the Pinjarra Classic) was a great reason to venture south for the day. Surprisingly, the road surface was pretty smooth for most of the undulating course. The Women’s A Grade race started with eleven women, some of whom had already ridden the 100+km to get there! A few very early breaks were made by teams who had a number of women represented amongst the rest of the bunch, which left the others to chase them down.
Most of the group managed to stay together until the Boddington turnaround point but the undulating terrain and hard pace up a few of the climbs proved to be too much for some. A short rain shower and a much smaller group meant that the pace slowed in parts where it seemed many were trying to conserve energy for what had the potential to be a race-deciding attack on one of the many climbs in the last half of the race.
With 70kms to go, five were left with only individual riders and solo team members amongst the remaining women. A lift of pace as the whole group worked together to increase the gap on the women behind put pressure on everyone’s already tired legs approaching the final kilometres of the race. I somehow found myself on the front of the group coming back into Dwellingup on the final climb. It became obvious that due the absolute grit, strength, and perseverance of the remaining women, a final attack up the climb would have likely been unsuccessful.
When I reached the top of the climb I was still at the front of the group. Having ridden the last 5km of the course during my pre-race warmup, I had made a mental note of landmarks and points of reference leading into the final corner. Wondering if anyone would overtake me, I pushed the pace hard into the last left hand turn with the rest of the women following closely behind. A hard sprint out of the corner and through the last 200m managed to get me across the line in first place!
It was great to see so many SPR members out in every grade. The race was extremely well-organised and I always felt safe out on the road. Well done to the Peel District Cycle Club and all the volunteers who helped make the race a great success in its first year on the new course.
In addition, we saw Meegan Fyfield place on the podium in Womens C Grade as a warm up for Amy’s.
A big thanks to the Peel District CC for putting on a cracking event on a new course. Make sure you get there next year. Hope to see you at the Ferguson Valley Classic next weekend where we’ll have the SPR tents set up in Dardanup, with a return of the Gnomes!