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There hasn’t been a single other gravel race that has had as high a level and depth to date. Olympic champions, mtb world champions, Paris Roubaix winner, even olympic gold medal triathletes are racing. It was one of those rare days where you hop on the bike and you feel like you have nothing holding you back. ( a no chain day.) The race started with two intense climbs, steep as hell and decisive, after a technical neutral, which became In no way neutral as we were fighting it out for positioning into the climb. Some days those uphills aren’t my forte, but that day, I was ready to take them, leading the group as it whittled down to under 20 riders over the first climb. The rise ended with taking on one of the most technical downhills of the day, and luckily my background in MTB, and the advantage of home roads means I could take this descent with confidence and speed. I led this with Lucas Baum, a MTB legend into the second climb. We carried that advantage into the next 22% climb, awash with wet rocks, mud and single track. I had never planned to be the one driving the race But since I started the climb first, I figured, why not. I looked back a few times and saw some of the race favourites on their limits, so I held the pace to see what damage I could do. We crested els angels with a group of 11 and began a long series of downhills before finally hitting the flat lands of Emporda.


The latter half of the race sadly didnt go as well as the first part. My back seized up as we re crested the gavarres range, and I dropped out of the front group. This is gravel, so there’s no main peloton, no grupetto, I kept going as full as I could, but often on my own as we crossed rivers, fields, and travelled inland to loop back into Girona. I’ll take my respectable 20th place- not what I wanted at the start of my day, but most importantly, I still loved every second of it. Home roads: Its amazing to have friends alongside the road the whole way, cheering me on. It had rained the whole week prior to the race, so what is often dusty dry gravel had morphed into a new surface, a thick, sticky mud, and some super slippery sections. I had been out the week in advance, checking these areas to know what I was in for. It adds a whole new element of fun and technicality to the racing, and I say bring it! We race outside for a reason: if you want everything controlled, go race track.

The energy in Girona the week of this race is mental! There are thousands of visiting cyclists here, brands and stakeholders bringing huge energy into our small town. I feel lucky to get to show off my cycling paradise in such a great way.

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