3R Watopia 65km Race – 6 laps

Course: Watopia Flat
Distance: 6 laps/40m/65km

(No Stream)

Its been a while since I completed a race on Zwift. In fact, the last event I officially completed on Zwift Power was the ADHR Bacon Rolls with Caffeine ride on Nov 26. Its fair to say I fell out of love with Zwift. Last Winter I was racing and streaming a couple every week but this year I’ve almost cancelled my subs a few times as I wasn’t riding enough to justify the cost.

Over Xmas I did try racing again but it was apparent I’d developed an efficient diesel engine rather than the snappy, hot hatch I needed to race online. It was the kick up the arse I needed. Cue a change of heart and I set about getting fitter in January. First up a 30 day ab challenge to build some core strength and for the last few weeks I’ve dropped my Tuesday commutes in favour of a quite brutal Zwift workout called the Chain Breaker. I’ve been commuting the rest of the week tired, recovering on Saturdays and then riding this race, a 6 lapper around Watopia Flat building up from 3 laps adding a lap a week until today when I managed to complete it. I think I’m back in the game.

I’ve been riding @ 66kg for months. I dipped under 64kg this week having lost weight but I dropped it to 65kg today, so I was probably a touch over

The start wasn’t the fastest I’ve ever had to do but it soon settled down in the Tunnels with the first test of the legs up the exit ramp. The group stretched but the surges kept the pace high. My training and previous weeks riding this event had conditioned my legs back to being able to surf the group and maintain position. Its the ability to repeatedly surge you lose from not racing enough. Through the Italian Villas, over the bridge and the first split went on the climb. A mad dash to regroup and lap 1 was done at high pace. All good .

Lap 2 and the baggers were still in there. Cat B’s spunking 4-5w/kg+ like porn stars but thats another (mass) debate for another time lol. Lap 3, same story. The lead group was thinning out and I was able to hold the front. Riders were having a go with a couple going clear a getting a gap but you know it all comes undone on the climbs so I just waited, turned on the taps briefly and then let everyone else close the gap.

I expected Lap 4 to begin to hurt but I began to feel quite strong to be honest although it was evident the group was not as keen to keep the pace as high now unless someone went clear which would guarantee a quick chase. Lap 5 I found myself clear in the esses briefly after I drifted off the front. I opened the taps to draw a reaction. I did begin to go clear so I went full gas but the inevitable reaction came so I eased.

The last lap I ballsed up in the tunnels. Trying to write a message of thanks I pressed escape and briefly dropped out the race. I had to do 10w/kg to get back on at the foot of the exit ramp so I had to go again!. I was in the red. The race wound up going big on the hill after the bridge. I hung in and held my sprint as best I could for 10th over the line.

Happy with that. A month of decent training and a bit of weight loss getting me back on track!

Ride on!

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