Welcome to sunny Tasmania, the view upon arrival was less than stellar after a suboptimal night trialling alternatives to the oceanview recliner for some quality shuteye.
Making good time to Hobart including some L-plate hours for Sean we kitted up, grabbed a number and did some laps before heading south for the hour drive to our accomodation. Ninety minutes later and still a way off the decision was made, time to turn around, scrap that accomodation and hope we could find something in Hobart.
Calling ahead to try and find a place with some vacancies our luck turned and we didn't have to book a place. Gen turned lifesaver and offered up some vacant beds with Team Torq Nutrition fifteen minutes ride from the course. Upon arrival I had a very fitting little friend on my bed. With that we head to race day.
The hope was to turn that 303 into a 302 and with a little luck a 301 by the end of the day to finish out the series. Getting the holeshot as I've done in three of the four rounds I've attended things were going to plan on a course that didn't allow much passing. The one section of extended fireroad was through the start/finish and feed zone. First time through and we all looked to a roadie strongman wearing Praties kit. As expected he made his move and we all forgot about the top step.
We were down to a bunch of four with everyone trying their hand to get away over the next two laps before I got a move to stick and a gap opened. Unfortunately for me the one rider that had been dropped early in the cat and mouse games was the unranked rider I needed to occupy a position between myself and the others to guarantee a move up the rankings.
Up the final climb the two chasing were out of sight so I was able to descend risk free to cross the line second. Damien and Sean had never lost sight of each other the whole race with Sean winning out in the end to take the final podium spot and the series overall win. The good news for me was the extra gap to Damien meant I snuck into second overall. Sean summed it up pretty well post race, 'Welcome to Elite'.
Still a rather successful weekend for this little travelling party.
Well except for the boat. If wasting time in quarantine and a terrible nights sleep floats your boat then you may love it though. Us, we'll be flying next time.