13 April 2022
Today, I gained another UCI race day in the legs; De Brabantse Pijl UCI 1.1. A course that consisted of 22 climbs with 6 cobbled sections.
My positioning for the first 60km was really good and my legs were feeling great. I did a bidon (French for 'water bottle') run back to the car to feed my teammates and after that, I struggled to find the front again.
Over the cobbled climb that also featured on the 2021 World Champsionships course, me and many others were distanced from the front as a crash took place at the top of the wet cobbles. We found it hard to get back on the bike and start again. So, we had to run to the top and by that time the main bunch was already gone. A group of 30-40 of us formed and unfortunately, we were pulled from the race at the 100km mark. However, overall, I was happy to be able to help the team in this race and my teammate Loes got a top 15 result.
29 April 2022
It was a day of firsts in Luxembourg at the Ceratizit Festival by Elsy Jacobs!
I ticked off my first-ever UCI stage race and first stage race with my IBCT team. Stage 1 was a 2.2km prologue with a short climb and 8 corners. I did a good warm-up to try and give it my all. However, the team was already slightly disadvantaged from the start without TT bikes, aero helmets, and disc wheels. My timing chip also failed on the initial results adding an extra 90 seconds to my time, however, this was fixed before the start of stage 2. But we didn't let this stop us from giving it our all!
30 April 2022
Stage 2 of the Elsy Jacobs (2. Pro) stage race is a 120km course over some challenging climbs and descents. It made for a hard day out! My positioning going into the climbs let me down each time as I was starting the climbs on the back. I felt like a bit of a yo-yo in this race. But I was really happy with the team's final result. I achieved a lot of power PBs today, which is a big improvement for me!
1 May 2022
Today, was the last stage of the Elsy Jacobs and the fatigue was starting to settle in. The 100km race incorporates some of the same climbs from stage 2 plus an extra circuit loop with more climbs. Adding to the extra climbs, there was also less time to recover between climbs. Teammate Loes Adegeest placed 6th, after some fantastic team work on the day. This tour was a great experience for me, as I hadn't competed in a race like this with my IBCT team before.
2 May 2022
My Aussie NRS ( Sydney Uni-Stamindae) teammate, Georgie Whitehouse, arrived from Australia today to take up a position in the IBCT. Like me, she will be staying for the remainder of the road cycling season. I was really excited to have her join us, I feel more at home home with more Aussie riders cycling around Belgium.
7 May 2022
I got a last-minute call up to race GP Ecostruct 1.1 as one of our team members was no longer able to race. I didn't expect much coming into this race as I had just completed a big week of training, not realising I would be racing today. It's also a sprinter's race, so I wanted to be actively involved in the lead out.
The course included a big lap (completed 3 times), which had a 400m cobble section and a smaller lap, which was also completed 3 times. On the second big lap, I had a flat tyre and accidentally made a classic Aussie-style mistake. Normally in Australia, we would stop on the left-hand style for a change of wheels or bike, but in Europe, as they drive on the opposite side of the road to Australia, it is protocol to stop on the right. I knew this already, but habit kicked in and I stopped on the left. Did I hear about my mistake from my manager? Yes! I did! Lesson learnt (tick).
8 May 2022
Finally, I bought something when shopping! On Facebook Marketplace :)
Georgie and I purchased a town bike each for adventures in our downtime and we can now reach a greater variety of grocery stores. They have come in handy (best purchase yet)!
20 May 2022
Veenendaal - Veenendaal UCI 1.2 started off with a maze-like course with many different loops and rolling climbs.
Rain was expected but held off until the last 1.5 hours of the race. Teammate Antonia made the early breakaway but was reeled back in pretty quickly by Valcar Travel and Service Team.
Today, there were a fair few crashes as some roads were narrow and covered in sand. For the dry part of the race, my positioning was good, however, when the rain settled in, my confidence dropped. Australian NRS Team ARA also competed in this race, it's nice having some familiar faces around.
We have a lot of kermesses races, Lotto Belgium tour, and many UCI races coming up. But, next up for me will be Dwars door de West UCI on the June 5. Thanks again to Dubbo City & Gilgandra Toyota for the continue support and for everyone following along and supporting my journey. Stay tuned for the next one!