By Helen McKay.
I’ve been meaning to write something about what it means to me to be on a team and what community is for me as a cyclist, this may just skim the surface of what I think and feel.
My team are amazing. They are inspiring. Whether they are shooting up a hill or mountain like a graceful badger on speed, smiling throughout a grim race, remaining positive when the seriously big stuff hits the fan, or descending the slopes of Kent like Marianne Vos, they make me sit up and think my goodness ‘if I could be like that’.
My team are brilliantly supportive. They have all been behind me doing the National 10. I didn’t bend pylons as I had hoped, but they don’t mind. We do this for fun.
I’ve come round to thinking that, although I didn’t ride my best TT ever, I did OK. Actually I did pretty damn good. I got a new PB. I have a lot of people to thank:
- Richard for getting up at 5am to drive me there, and coping with my last minute change of steed. Enough to make someone lose their rag, but you didn’t.
- Charlie and Jo for recommending that (at this late stage) I use my usual bike and add clip-on bars (I didn’t manage the aero wheels unfortunately).
- Lydia for the loan of a pointy hat. I had the point facing forward so I crossed the line quicker.
- Sam for sorting my gears out – worked brilliantly. Thank you Directeur Sportif.
- LMNH team for cheering me on and telling me I’d be good. Thx girls. Awesomes!
- Beyonce and Freemasons for coming together to create a great mix of Ring the Alarm! Oh yeah.
- Mike, and London Phoenix‘s Paul, Thomas, Daniel W, Chris, Guy, and Dan J for all offering me clip on aero bars (I borrowed Thomas’s and held on for dear life. I even took some of the round-a-bout on them – that’s just crazy thinking about it! I’ve never even practiced that kind of trickery. The things you do!)
- Guy for offering to lend me his zimmer frame – maybe next year. Is it UCI legal?
- London Phoenix‘s Daniel W, Ben and Rob for taking an interest in gears!
- Bruce Mackie et famille, and Lea Valley for offering to lend me a spare TT bike at short notice even though capriciously I felt I’d do better on my road bike in the end. (We tried to bond for 30mins and although it was a sweet ride, I’d have been even more of a donkey around bends.) Huge thanks.
- Totally Time Trial for trying to source me a tiny TT bike with adult gearing. I am sorry it didn’t work out but I know you did everything you could to try to get me sorted. If anyone needs to hire a bike this guy is very helpful, see: Totally Time Trial bike hire
- D.Yarham and all the people who put on the 2012 National 10 from car park marshals, to those clapping at the round-a-bouts.
- Chris Boardman and co. for making a fantastic bike.
I thoroughly enjoyed my ride, particularly swooping round roundabouts at speed. Neeeow.
Well done to everyone, esp. Julia Shaw who beat the pants off everyone else.
So I am either 17th fastest over 10 miles in the country (I like saying it like that) or, because I do PR, 1st fastest woman* in the unannounced road bike category (*and only competitor) . Just go with it and don’t burst my bubble. I’m pleased. (1 sec behind Lynn Hamel. Check that out! Sorry Lynn but that is good for me.)
Note to bike makers (Felt) if you are going to make 650c wheeled bike don’t put a compact on – those gears offer nothing to get your teeth into! Put at least a 53-11 on – this is roughly equivalent to a compact on 700c wheels. Give us teeth!
2012 National 10 Results.