Annie Foreman-Mackey and Carrie Cartmill lined up Sunday for the Ontario road championships. With just two riders on the line, it was going to be a tough race to control, but both riders had some great fitness coming out of BC Superweek. Foreman-Mackey tells the story.
After an awesome couple days at our Stevens Racing “learn to ride track” mini-training camp in Bromont, I headed back to Ontario to join Carrie at the Ontario Provincial Road Championships. The course was a 12-km loop in Holland Marsh with some fun descending and a gradual 3-km climb leading to three flat kilometres to the finish.
After blowing our legs out animating the race right from the start at our last Ontario race — the CHIN Picnic Criterium — we knew that we needed to be patient and really use our matches when they would count. Since Carrie and I tend to be quite impatient, this proved to be difficult as the first two thirds of the race bore some resemblance to an endurance ride. Unfortunately, I think the lack of teams bigger than three riders made riders hesitant to take risks.
So… Carrie and I took turns staying near the front while the other would float mid-pack. At the start of the sixth lap, there were a couple short-lived attacks, but the group seemed content to just stay put. Carrie and I, however, had other plans. We placed ourselves near the front of the pack going up the climb for the second-last time and just as we crested the top of the climb, I attacked as hard as I could. I knew that this was the last opportunity to get away — I was really hoping not to have another bunch sprint finish — so I put my head down and went for it.
With the simple box-shaped course, I could not rely on the old “out-of-sight-out-of-mind” strategy; I was definitely IN SIGHT! I powered through the tailwind section and the descent, gaining some time on the group. Turning the corner into the headwind I started to struggle. Going up the climb for the final time, I could tell that the group was gaining ground on me. I tried not to panic and just focus on the road ahead of me.
The last 300 m I could see the blue of a jersey out of the corner of my eye, so I willed myself not to sit down and just squeeze out any power left in my legs. The finish was a little too close for my liking, but I was super excited to hang on for the win! An awesome ride and final sprint for Comeback-Carrie who was third, just behind sprinter Candice Vermeulen (who guest rode for us in BC)! [Click here for the full results]
Next up, Adriane Provost and I are heading to Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke to race for our respective provincial teams 🙂
[Note: Also representing Stevens Racing p/b The Cyclery at the Canada Games will be Matteo Dal-Cin of the men’s team.]