It’s fair to say that there are some things in life that have taken strange and wonderful twists and turns, taking me to places I never imagined. The Blog is definitely one of those. Inspired and encouraged by John Hardy it actually started while I was on Jury service…waiting in a holding area…where time stands still.
I’m convinced it was one of the reasons I progressed in my career and certainly help when it came to getting my dream job at Ospreys Rugby.
Now it has taken me somewhere else. Through the blog I was able to enter the World Press Cycling Championships, this year held on the Island of Crete 🙂
I trained hard all year and managed some pretty good form coming into the championships…here is a few pictures to tell the story quickly 🙂
It was 4 events
- Sprint (200 meters)
- Team Time Trial (16 Km)
- Individual Time Trial (6.5km)
- Road Race (60km)
Having stressed a lot about the travelling and bike getting here safely…that all went well. On;y for a slight adjustment error to cause a major mechanical failure, ripping the rear gear derailleur off the bike!!
Big Credit to the local bike shop for fixing it and replacing the mangled parts!!
Ready and number pinned…I was really up for the Sprint!
Out of the start gate and on my way to being World Press Champion 🙂
The Team Time Trial
Since I was the only Brit…there could be no British team. However, since my wife is Greek, I was baptised in Crete and married in Crete…they decided that I was Greek enough to be allowed to compete in the Greek Team 🙂
Proud to be a part of a team that gave their all, Chris in the middle and Panos (who won 3 world titles this week in his category!!)…it just wasn’t our day and we were well beaten by a strong Belgian team.
I even ended up in the local paper! To quote the section that talks about me directly…it translates as ‘Welsh, but married to a Greek, Neil Poulton.’ Made me laugh!!
Individual Time Trial
This is the only picture I have of the Time Trial…I set all new power and heart rate PB’s to cover the distance in 13 mins 17 seconds…well beaten by 45 seconds by the flying German, Werner.
I didn’t expect to do anything in the road race, but having grown in confidence over the other events I hoped to at least be in the first group. It was a boiling hot day, 60 km, 3 laps of a circuit with a 5 km hill each lap.
Ended the race with a decent heat stress, but it was my best ever effort in a road race.
There was a lot of tactics involved and since I was the best sprinter, the best climbs constantly attacked me on the hill, which I was able to cover…though I saw some comedy numbers on my heart rate monitor…if my competitors knew how close/over my limit I was they could have walked away from me I’m sure!!
Over the line…heart rate at 193!! Silver medal again!!
What a brilliant event and a credit to Crete and Agios Nikolaos. Thanks to all that helped organise it and make it safe for the competitors.
Fantastic 4 days, 1 Gold and 3 Silver medals, many new friends and already looking forward to next years event in Germany 🙂
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