Sunday, 18 May 2008


They say that bad things come in three, but sometimes they multiply and your week turns to ruin! Our family celebrated 3 birthday’s in one week. For my Mum‘s, I baked a triple chocolate cheesecake, only to discover that she hates them. For my sister’s, I ventured to Davo’s motor pacing and broke a gear cable. The following day I went to catch the train to Melbourne but missed it. The decision to go home and return in an hour would have been a good one had it not been for a change in timetable, resulting in another missed train. I then waited for half an hour and caught the final train for the night. I chose the worst carriage, where a mother was threatening to throw her children through the glass windows, and a group of teenage boys were smoking! I changed carriages, fell asleep in the peace and quiet, and missed my station! After waiting for a train out of the city, I rode from Caulfield station in the rain, finally arriving at the Smyth’s…at 11pm!

My brother’s birthday came on Saturday, but celebrations were lacking after waking early, puncturing at the beginning of motor pacing, and suffering beyond comprehension on the ride home! Finally a stroke of luck came on Sunday, Mother’s Day, when my Mum decided to pick me up from Pakenham on my way home. Otherwise, I would have been stuck on the tracks for hours, after a 61 yr old man walked in front of a Traralgon bound train and lost his life! After another puncture and a hair-cut to forget, I thought that Mother Nature would have been a little more thoughtful following my disastrous week. But as I road-tripped to Newstead (with Chloe and Nic pictured), where the temperature reached a maximum of 8 degrees, that didn’t seem to be the case. Nicole had spent the week drawing pistols, Chloe had been busy examining old peoples genitalia, and the last thing we were keen on was racing the Metropolitan Road Championships in the pissing down rain!

With 90kms, three laps, 12 starters, and no leg warmers, I was in desperate need of some blood flow. At 15kms I threw down the first attack, with a group of six including Nic, Chloe, Tess Downing, Bec Domange, Kath O’Shea and Suzanne Alway settling in together. Nearing the end of the first lap, Nic went again, and the two of us passed through the finish with a mere 10-seconds on the chasers. As the bell signalled our final lap, our advantage had grown and we were able to discuss the specifics of minestrone soup…anything to keep warm! With 2kms remaining and one hill to the finish, I put in a final effort to ride solo to the finish. Nic cruised in for second, with Tess taking the sprint for third, 4minutes down. As Nic and I reminisced on our performance, we hit a set of wet railway tracks and Nic came down hard! Seven hours later, with stiches in her elbow, she looked sore and swollen (pictured). So now Nic is a cripple, Chloe is hung over from her Physio ball, and I am the kind of sick that involves no appetite! Now that’s scary!

Results: Metropolitan Road Championships, Newstead, 90km Road Race

Monday, 5 May 2008


Two blondes and a red head are driving to Mount Gambier, what major highway do they take? … We started in Melbourne, after Chloe (left) had travelled from Bright, Nicole (middle) from Frankston, and I, from home in Traralgon that morning. Starting in Ormond, we were (supposed to be) faced with 456kms of driving. When we realised that we were lost in Seymour; 503kms to go! When we arrived in Daylesford for dinner and no available toilet paper; 372kms to go. After stopping for snacks and petrol in Ballarat (pictured); 326kms to go. Playing chicken with the train in Lake Bolac; 225kms to go. Finally on the road to Mount Gambier; 162kms to go. An obscure vomit smell; 103kms to go. Back to civilization; 5kms to go. Our arrival in Mount Gambier was highly awaited after 623kms of travel, but to our disappointment, we were unable to sleep as silence wasn’t something we were used to after spending 7 hours in the car! By the time our heads hit the pillow, it was already morning!

We went into the race with mixed emotions. It was Chloe’s first handicap, Nic was the reigning female champion, and I was reminiscing Davo’s motor pace sessions. We had breakfast at 10am, I stripped down to my bra to remove my undershirt on the start line at 10:19am, and we rolled out at 10:20am. With limit 20 minutes up the road, it was a matter of counting down the kilometres. With 110kms to go, we hit road works, and I hit a cone with some serious force! With 76kms remaining, we sighted the one and only hill in the entire race. Then at 60kms to go, only 5 of the 15 group members could manage a turn. We were yet to seize the bunch in front, still hadn’t caught sight of the bunch behind, and only the girls seemed to have enough drive to compete for the win. Eventually, when I felt that our group had lost all hope in the closing 10kms, I rode away solo. The legs certainly felt the pinch, but it gave me 12th overall, third female, and the fastest female time! Nic and Chloe managed second and third fastest, something to celebrate (pictured).

At the presentation dinner, we discovered that the scratch markers were close behind, not a bad effort after waiting 5 minutes for road works! We were also told that Chloe was 30 seconds from winning a brand new frame! Prior to leaving, we raided the tables for small chocolate desserts, and headed across the road to McDonalds, which wasn’t a good idea as we knew the manager, resulting in huge amounts of free food! Another night of continuous conversation saw us fall asleep mid-sentence while watching animal planet, before waking to room-service breakfast in bed! The seven women to contend the criterium on Sunday seemed extremely unmotivated after watching the C grade field run into the barriers just beyond the finish line. But nonetheless, after a neutral lap of the 1.4km undulating circuit, I was solo again! I stayed away for the whole 25 minutes to take the win, with Chloe claiming the sprint for second. We would need the money for extra food on the road trip home, direct, this time via Geelong =)

Results: Alex Robert's 100 Mile Classic, Mount Gambier, 152km Handicap
Results: Murray T Martin Pharmacy Criterium, Mount Gambier, 25minutes

Friday, 2 May 2008


Saturday morning it rained, Sunday morning I froze, and Monday's gym session at the VIS was spoilt by the presence of the Collingwood football club. That night, it was time to celebrate the champions of 2007 at the VIS awards dinner. Leigh Howard was driving, and I was running 30 minutes late. I had a dilemma with shoes, and was borrowing from a friend whose foot happens to be two sizes larger than mine! This was fixed, but not easily, with double sided tape and a large wad of tissues! Walking was difficult, but somehow I managed six hours in those awkward heels. Michael Gallagher, Glen O'Shea and Cadel Evans were our Athlete's of the Year, while Leigh took home coaches favourite. From here, it was to the ice-cream stall, where Langas and I consumed three servings before heading downstairs to the casino.

It all started with $30 on the table, and after three hours playing 21, plus a $500 profit, we headed for a final dessert where Leigh shouted me my first ever Crispy Creme doughnut (pictured)! It was the standard glazed sort, quite thick, large and relatively soft in comparison to your normal Donut King treat. Was it all that I had built it up to be in my head? Almost =) Then there was the dilemma of trying to find our car in the parking lot. Although the staff lift offered four different level options, including the basement, a coat room, and the rubbish collection, none led to our exact location. But after a 30 minute hike, we were finally on our way home. Now it's a bit premature to get excited, but today I depart for the South Australian border! It doesn't sound all the invigorating at first, and usually a five hour drive would bore me, but Nicole, Chloe and I have prepared ourselves for a weekend road-trip! Get excited!!