Bicycle Network was sent this story from Cammeray Roadies about their training and prep for Peaks Challenge Falls Creek. If you see them out there tomorrow, be sure to say hello!
The Cammeray Roadies from Sydney have been represented at Peaks Challenge Falls Creek for a number of years now, but have significantly stepped up their game for the 2019 event. Having had a few serial Peakers, some first time attempts, as well as their first female club member cross the line in previous editions, the club’s participation has now increased in the space of one year by 100%.
This year will see a squad of 20 riders from the Cammeray Roadies hot footing it down the Hume and across the state border in pursuit of conquering the mighty Challenge. The spectrum of riders from the club is varied: from return offender Josh Bretag who will be aiming to crack the eight-hour mark, to first-timers simply wanting to cross the line ahead of the lurking lanterne rouge.
Among the 20 riders, 17 have formed the #CRSub10 #oneteamonedream clan. The target is to get as many Cammeray Roadies as possible over the finish line under the 10-hour mark, and importantly to enjoy this unique experience as a team. The group has been training together relentlessly and has developed a detailed strategy that will see them riding and working together as one team in their unmistakable blue colours throughout the day.
To achieve the goal each member will contribute to the group in measures relative to their individual strengths, with little left to chance; bunch riding, rolling turns and nutrition. Even group stops and puncture repairs under time constraints have formed part of their training routine, with team chef Amanda Penel on hand to ensure that pre and post event nutrition is under firm control.
The last three months have been packed with long rides around Sydney, training weekends in Bright and Berry, team strategy sessions, and a lot of coffee, social media activity and banter. The group has covered a distance equivalent to going around the earth twice! The level of effort and planning has been immense. In ride captain, Garth McInerney's words "we won't die wondering if [sub10] was possible".
As ride leader, James Gawne, commented, the legacy of the group’s training for Peaks Challenge will survive the day itself, with all riders having significantly upskilled their individual and group riding techniques, which will in turn spread to the rest of the Cammeray Roadies, even those not partaking in the event itself this year. A positive outcome for the club, and for cycling in general.
In ride captain Andy James’ words “it’s been about overcoming personal barriers and riding longer distances then anyone thought was possible. This has only been possible from having an amazing team full of good mates to train with and to learn from”.
This will be team captain David Fanjul’s third time at Peaks Challenge. Having been part of a two-man Cammeray Roadies team in each of his previous two years at the event, and having achieved his personal goal of sub-9 hours in 2018 alongside Peaks legend Ben Turner, he highlighted the value of working as a group rather than taking on the day as individuals.
He explained what a unique and amazing experience it is riding this event with friends through the Victorian Alps as part of the flawlessly organised Bicycle Network event, and what an added pleasure it has been this year to have shared the lead up with such a group of great team members.
“The camaraderie has been second to none, and the relationships between team members have strengthened enormously through the preparations. It is an honour to go into this year's Peaks Challenge having seen the commitment and personal sacrifice that each individual has made”.
CRSub10 team will cover cumulative ground equivalent to a single ride between Sydney and Perth this Sunday, so while the end result on the day will be governed by many external factors, whatever it is, as team member Philippe Penel said "aim for the moon, even if we miss, we will be amongst the stars".
Best of luck Cammeray Roadies!
For more information about Peaks Challenge Falls Creek visit peakschallenge.com.au and follow #PeaksChallenge on Twitter and Instagram.