The Lights by Linea Hero Challenge is in full swing, with two out of the four races completed already. The format of the races are criteriums, which are very popular in Europe, and consist of races around a circuit of 2.7km for an hour plus one lap. The series is run in the Western Cape by the team from Lights by Linea. In the second race of the season the number of entrants is already swelling. Team Pure Savage is taking part in this series in order to improve the team’s bunch riding skills and interval training.
For the first of the Lights by Linea Hero Challenge we had 5 Savage’s giving it a bash, Travis, Bernard, Brendon, Elbert and Klyde. The team was entered in CAT 2 for the series as it was the first criterium racing for some of the boys.
|Team ready to roll before Crit 1|
Klyde did not get off to a flyer when in the car park he managed to step on his chain and end his criterium on the first climb. He was the lucky one. The remaining four slogged it out over the next forty five minutes keeping up with the constant attacks from the peloton.
We had not discussed the team tactics before the race so when one of the boys went in the break the rest of the team may have chased down the break, over and over again. Tiring out just Team Pure Savage and not many more of the bunch!
There was slight confusion on the last lap as none of us managed to hear the bell, so when we came around the final corner and the peloton started sprinting around us and we thought it was a pretty baller move with 10 minutes still left to race. Then as we started pacing back on to the bunch we almost collected a few of the guys who had just sprinted for the line! We were not likely to have placed but would have been fun to try pip some of our team mates at the line!
After the race the war stories about dead wheels, false flats and possible slow punctures raged as the boys were pretty stoked with such awesome racing!
With race 1 in the bag the bug had bitten and we had convinced some more of the riders from Team Pure Savage to rock up and give the Lights by Linea Hero Challenge a smash. The boys that rolled out were, Travis, Brendon, Elbert, Bernard, Delano and Klyde. This time Klyde managed to stay upright and not destroy his groupset.
After plenty of high fives, a quick warm up and the kind of team strategy that would make an under 9 rugby coach proud, the boys were ready to rock and roll!
|Team ready to rock at Crit 2|
There was strong riding on the front of the field by Peter Wheeler in his Lights by Linea kit and a rider from CHIC. This fast pace was putting Travis and Brendon deep in the pain cave at the end of each lap. Bernard had positioned himself well in the field and was coping well with the bursts of speed. After half an hour Travis, in his own words, “was soft” and let his spasming back pull him out of the race. If anyone has a number of a physio that can fix his back so that he can ride the MTB stage race next weekend please drop us a mail!
This race we had our support team shouting to us on the last lap to remind us that it was infact the last lap and that we should sort ourselves out. On the final drag up to the top of the circuit, the team tried to break away from the field but the racing had taken the sting out of the attack and the boys could not hold off the chasing group.
Coming into the last corner it was very tight and everyman for himself. Brendon managed to just open up a small gap on Bernard and finish just behind the sprint for the Masters.
Brendon may not have been paying close attention after the race as all he could really see were black dots. After the 4th or 5th call he managed to scramble onto the podium and get his medal. Well done Bernard and Brendon for getting on the podium.
|Savage boys on the podium! (Eventually)|
During the week Team Pure Savage was challenged to a friendly wager by team Sportsworld.co.za, we guess this makes it 1 – 0 :D. Thank you Mitchum SA for partnering with us once again, it was no sweat, sorta. If you click on the Mitchum link you can enter their awesome competition!
We would like to thank Wayne Roberts and the event sponsors, Trek, Kia motors, Craft and Eccentric payment systems and the team from Lights by Linea for organizing such an amazing event for road cycling in the Western Cape. We would really like to see the Pedal Power Association make an effort and do whatever it takes on their side to help grow the fun rider side of this event as it is in a safe environment and teaches great bunch riding skills.
We are looking forward to next weekend’s race at Polkadraai again!