Race one for me was the 3km Individual Pursuit… or the pursuit of happiness that isn’t so happy. As a first year in the elite ranks I went out with the mentality that I would be going for a time rather than the u/19 mentality which I have been oh-so accustomed to of going for a place. So I started well and set a good rhythm, finishing in a time of 3:37. I was stoked.
In the final I went up against Ash Ankudinoff and it felt like that moment in a movie where the damsel in destress says ‘what now!’ and the hero says, ‘I didn’t think this far!’ Like I said I was really going for a time, then a bronze medal ride off spiked up and that is something I didn’t think I would be doing for at least a couple of years. But I gotta keep everyone on their toes, even myself! After starting out like a house on fire and slowly bearing the brunt of Ash’s strength it was an honour to be beaten by such a classy athlete… even as much as filthy forth position sucks.
Huge kudos also goes out to Bec Wiasak from the High5 Dream Team who sealed the top step.
Race two was the Points Race. Being the sole standing Queenslander against a strong field, it was never going to be easy. However, having the Anna Meares Velodrome filled with majority of Queenslanders banging on the fence as we rode past and cheering me on definitely made me feel like I wasn’t the only Queenslander in the bunch. This along with the bias commentary from Luke Lucas, a Queenslander through and through definitely helped! The 100 lap race was closely contested, as Alex Manly piped me in the last sprint claiming second on 21 points, Amy Cure just ahead of her on 29 points, and myself on 20 points.
Finally, the scratch race. Alike the points, I knew I had my hands full with a solid field of athletes all botching for a medal on the final race of nationals 2017. The Tasmanians were very strong in the points and worked together so well, this along with the South Aussies had ‘power in numbers’. The race really turned up with 10 or so to go. In the final laps Amy Cure showed me the reason why she’s World Champ and Olympian, I was stoked to be able to race people of her calibre, and thrilled to be able to come away with a silver.
The video of the scratch race can be found at: (Its the 24 minute video, click the right arrow on the video if it takes you straight to the sprint rounds)
I was not born the last time Queensland held a National championship, and now to compete on a world class velodrome amongst world class athletes in my home state is something very special. The Commonwealth Games are just around the corner and in 14 months time athletes worldwide will spill into this venue and compete at one of the highest levels. To be apart of the inaugural event was something I will tell to my grandkids.
Out on the track, cycling can look like a very individual sport, however many people contribute to my development. My coach/ counsellor/ sports psych Nick Formosa, the entire QAS crew that helped out over Nationals plus the athletes for always having my back, the High5 dream team, which includes Kim Palmer, Griffith University for their recent support, the Commonwealth Games Development Team, the Sunny Coast Club, my parents; Sylvia and Mal, also my boyfriend Sam, every supporter than made the trek out in that horrific traffic and everyone on the Saturday coffee grind.