>Imperial Winter Series 2010 finale

>Another (my third) Winter Series done. Race #12 was fairly uneventful. The bunch moved quickly to start with, had a forced deceleration for a few laps when the 3rd cats caught us, and then finished at some speed.

At five laps to go I should have started to move up (Alex Murray even offered to guide me through the bunch). I demurred – too scared to go early. It’s a pity because I’d recovered from a mid-race gasping episode. As it was, I started to go forward with two laps to go and (I hope) finished in the first half of the field (*edit* actually 26/39). I even rode the finish straight out of the saddle (as if in a slow-motion sprint).

Thanks to Lucy, Richard, Doug and the rest of the Collins clan and their friends who organise and run these events that keep us going through the winter. Thanks also to all the (overworked) first aiders, commissaires, judges, photo finish pixies, photographers, supporters and riders who contribute to the series.

The end of series prize giving saw awards (including trophies, champagne and flowers) being handed out for the tightly fought series titles. There were also Lucky Racers prizes drawn out of a hat.

Race stats: Race distance: 19.14 miles, time: 48:01 (23.9mph average speed). 26th out of 39. Top speed: 31.8mph. Fastest mile: 2:16 (26.5mph – mile 19), slowest mile: 2:35 (23.2mph – miles 4, 9 and 12). Average HR: 152bpm, maximum HR: 169bpm. WinnerStuart Kistruck (Twickenham CC)