Wednesday, 19 September 2012


East Timor is among the poorest countries in East Asia, with poverty to its literal meaning affecting two in five people. Half of the population is under the age of 14, and their life expectancy is just 57years. In 1975 this struggling country went their own way and claimed independence, a proud time that lasted mere months before being invaded by the Indonesians. They attacked roads and infrastructure, knocking down 99% of schools and poisoning water supplies. This invasion eventually claimed the lives of over 180,000, but the precise number may never be known as dismembered bodies were washed out to sea and many left to die of starvation. For 25 years they succumbed to murder, assault and rape, before fighting back to claim their independence once again in 2002.

Ten years on and I see an amazing country. I see children in schools with uniforms and books, 700 of them on bikes for the ‘Ride for Peace’, cheering everyday as they lined the roads with cow-bells, laughing at the sight of a female with her jersey unzipped. The people are inspiring and humbling and in every way beautiful, and they had invited us to share this momentous occasion with them, 10 years of independence.

It was my second time at the Tour De Timor, my biggest race for the year as it boasts not only an International field but a massive prize pool of over $100,000US. The tour stretches over 6 days, 600kms, with varying terrain that can only be completed on a MTB and is always done so in over 40deg temperatures, with chill time in a tent. If you think you like camping, Timor may change your mind!

Imagine camping on rocks, with a jumper as your pillow, next to an animal farm, kept awake from groaning generators and blinding campsite lights, oh and the stench from the nearby overflowing long drops and ‘shower with a bucket’ amenities. When you awake, you cue in line for an hour to eat recycled cold noodles from last nights dinner, and then wash it down with instant coffee if you’re in to that sort of thing. You do all of this, throw in a few hours of bike riding and then imagine…this is luxury living compared to the local Timorese peering over the fence at you.

In terms of the race, there is some massive media hype surrounding it. My jaw went sore on the start line from posing for photos before kicking off Stage 1 with my last minute assembled team. Partner Jarrod Moroni, Phil ‘the further I ride the quicker I get’ Orr and Ash ‘possibly the unluckiest man in the world’ Hyatt made up the mixed team as J&P in Orr (clearly Ash joined after we had named the team). We had no real race plan, which was a good thing as our team curse would mould the happenings of the tour for us. Last year I had three crashes, a skin reaction to one of the bush's I crashed into, two punctures, many a chain problem, and visited the medical tent EVERY day, so fingers crossed that this year would be different!

Day 1: Dili to Mota'ain: I had a slow leak pre-race, but shot a canister into it on the start line and it held up well. Ash lost his crank and as a result 29minutes, then Phil punctured with 5kms to go. Jarrod finished fourth and I was first female home, donning the pink jersey which fit a little too perfect to want to take it off!

Off the bike: Our bags nearly missed the morning truck which would have meant no luggage for the tour! I hand-washed for two as Jarrod isn't fond of the task, and then made him set the tent up in sweltering heat while I waited in the 35degree cool hmm

Day 2: Mota'ain to Makassar: Jarrod punctured early so we had Ash wait with him. When he punctured a second time he let Ash go, and the third time Jarrod nearly gave up on life! In the meantime Phil babysat me to the finish to take my second stage win, while ‘sprinter’ Phil came out to play and run second.

Off the bike: Before crossing the border into Indonesia, we waited on the start line for one hour in 40 degree heat so as the required 'suits' could make their speeches. But the Timorese were happy to wait (in track-suit pants!), some of them tortured and assaulted by the Indonesians years ago were patient in their roll off on the front line, proud to be on their way to make peace with their neighbours.

Day 3: Oecusse Loop: Dry, dusty, steep and HOT! The first hill climb day saw me in a bit of trouble from the pace with the boys the two days prior. I had a puncture that sealed early on, lost my only drink bottle, and also ended up losing the stage in a tough sprint to Lisa Jacobs. Meanwhile ahead of me, Ash was in a leading two-man break and looking to win the stage before having a local walk onto the road infront of him resulting in a nasty head-on crash! Phil and Jarrod were lucky enough to be untouched by our team curse for a day.

Off the bike: Despite being on the coast for most of the tour, there was only one location crocodile free that we could swim, and today was it! The water was apparently cold to the local children who had gathered to watch us swim, as they would all run from the water to roll in the hot sand and warm their bodies back up. I would have taken a photo to post but most of them were naked...and jail isn't nice in any country. We heard on the grapevine about some local accommodation and quickly jumped on a room. The toilet didn't flush, we didn't have power until 6pm, and we had no air-con at all, but we had beds..well Ash only had a mattress on the floor to soothe his wounds, but this was still better than a tent!

Day 4: Pante Makassar to Mota'ain: A flat ride back across the border but an eventuful day on the mens GC. Jarrod went up the road to finish fifth, and I took my third stage win. Fellow Australian Peter Ketschera took over the yellow jersey from the leading Malaysian Shahrin Amir with a ballsy break-away into the penultimate stage. Our flat days were done and it was time to bring on the climbing legs.

Off the bike: We had crossed the border for the third and final time, returning to our camp in Mota'ain. The long drops weren't so long anymore and two day old faeces still remained on the seats. It's about this time that 1 in 5 people have had or get some type of food poisoning and I could feel my own stomach reacting. I kept to my staple dry rice and one piece of chicken in the hope it would re-fuel me enough to suffer through the toughest day on tour.

Stage 5: Mota'ain to Gleno: The penultimate stage was here and after a hard four days I held a 40minute lead over Apollo rider Lisa Jacobs. I could have had an easier day, but after losing out on stage three I was out to prove that I could win this tour on a climb! An early 8km hill split the field for what I thought would be a very long day, but an in-humane descent and then chase from Jarrod saw me re-join the lead bunch of guys not long after.

I used ever bit of my worth to survive the rough terrain and intense dry heat as the Apollo Team drove to catch the break-away that was threatening Pete's yellow jersey. I became delirious to the point where I couldn't even force down gels or water. When I hit the final climb it was a relief! Jarrod and I sat up and tackled the steep first 4kms in 40minutes! Jarrod zig-zagged from one patch of shade to the next while we talked about the cannibal land we were riding through and complained about the 30km climb ahead of us.. I wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere else or with anyone else :)

Day 6: Gleno to Dili: I rode the entire final stage on my own once leaving the boys just 4kms in. It was my favourite stage as we climbed through the local villages; I was stealing beverages from the feed stations to give to the children as I passed. And then on my decent my jaw once again became sore from smiling. As I turned back along the coast for the final stretch on my own I could hear the grinding of dirt and oil on my chain (not washed for a week), combined with the sound of the waves crashing on the beach and it was so serene. I felt strong, resilient and fearless. Maybe the traits of the Timorese rub off on you during the tour, or maybe such a journey simply changes you. You'll have to experience it to find out..

In the end I finished 10th overall and won the female category by 1hr30min over Masziyaton Mohd Radzi from Malaysia. Lisa Jacobs was sitting in second after four stages, but was forced to withdraw from the tour after a tough Day 5 saw her suffer severe heat exhaustion.

Thanks go firstly to my sponsors Anytime Fitness, TREK, Adidas Eyewear, 4Shaw and Moronis Bikes. Thank you to the Timorese people for their hospitality, Mark Barends as race organiser, and of course the unwavering dedication of the many volunteers. I need to make it clear that these experiences are only as good as the people you share them with, and often they are people you meet along the way so thanks to my 'sugar daddy' Craig and his best mate Rich! And of course my team-mates Phil and Ash, and most importantly my partner Jarrod, without whom I would never have discovered the magical sport of MTB'ing.

Results: Tour De Timor
Garmin: Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3, Stage 4, Stage 5, Stage 6
Photos: Courtesy of Zoe Morley Photography, Urban Safari and Russ Baker

Tuesday, 28 August 2012


I thought that I would struggle to back up following Saturdays Road Race. A three-up 100km breakaway followed by an 85km handicap was surely not the return to racing my body had asked for. But being slightly off the pace meant there was no pressure to perform, and so I went into the race just wanting to get a good session out of the day, and head home to start the final block for Timor. 

As per usual, I really struggled through the first few kilometres, but before too long I was rolling through with our 17-strong bunch. We had 5 minutes to the chase, and a total of 9 minutes back to ‘block’ that consisted of my pre-race favourite, partner Jarrod Moroni, who was really enjoying himself pictured below...waving (shakes head). However when both bunches caught us just 40kms into the race, I conceded immediately that scratch wouldn’t be too far behind.

As the day was in aid of training, I continued to swap turns with the swelling bunch of nearly 50 riders in the crosswinds, and although as the day progressed so did the pain, it was made bearable knowing that Timor was looming in the near future. I fell back through the field over the climb and took my time getting to the roll-over. By now all four girls, Miranda, Flick, Kristy Glover and I were now helping with the pace-making and thoughts of todays victory became a little more realistic. Eventually the time gaps back to scratch plateaued and the wind began to gust. Within the final 10kms, when I thought my next turn would be my last, I eased to the back of the bunch for a rest only to find the bunch had dwindled to 18 and I was the sole female remaining! Flick would finish second and Miranda in third.

My excitement turned to Jarrod when I realised that this would most certainly end in a sprint, and I was confident that he would smash it, not-biased at all! We hit the final straight and I sat up to watch the finish unfold. When Jarrod kicked, he gapped the field with ease, and a quick look over his shoulder told him that he had 20metres on the bunch. Unfortunately there is such a thing as a blind spot, and a rookie mistake of ‘freewheel to the finish’ saw him pipped on the line to finish second. I was devastated for him, even hollow in the stomach, but words needn’t be said as he was hard enough on himself about losing out in that way.

But looking ahead to bigger things, and I can now say that in two weeks time I will be standing on the start line at the Tour De Timor. It has been an up and down five weeks since returning from America, but it’s obvious to me that the form is still there, all-be-it hidden behind the residue of sickness. I hope the next two weeks fly by because the preparation is starting to consume me!

Photos: Courtesy of Jo Upton Photography


The day after the Rob Vernon I thought to myself... 'Maybe my form isn't that bad after all'
The second day... 'Scrap that, the form is GOOD and I am M.O.T.I.V.A.T.E.D'
The third day god wiped that cocky smile off my face and gave me a bad bout of food poisoning that saw me drop 5kgs over a long nine days without meals. I won't describe the intricate details, but bread and icy-poles became my staple diet, and showering my daily exercise. When I got back on the bike for a 1-hour cruise with best friend Ev, I wanted to cry for my 26km/hr average on a HR of 153, but I didn't have the energy for it. I suffered through two more 1-hour rides and wondered if my life will ever be without drama...probably not...who's life is?

I had seen the start list and to be honest, I had no idea who anybody was! No disrespect intended, it's just that I haven't raced on the road scene for three years and am not one to look up results that I don't spot on Twitter or Facebook. Luckily women's racing is very to the book. E.g Bicycle Superstore and Holden Racing Team send a girl each up the road. I bridge across because I know their girls comprise the majority of the bunch and won't chase. The bunch chase me because they deem me a threat, and the same two teams then counter-attack. Pre-empting the move, I jump on for the ride. So I found myself in a 3-up break-away with the only two girls in the race I actually knew...initiator Felicity 'Flick' Wardlaw and the in-form Miranda Griffiths. Really Peta? You don't eat for nine days and then you want to do a 90km time trial?

I knew Flick would pull strong turns all day because she is a hard b***h. Miranda on the other hand was content to sit on for the first 15 minutes before contributing to the breakaway. There was hesitance in her decision even after the time gap neared the minute mark, which said maybe the teams plan had been spoilt thank's to Flick's crazy break-away scheme, or that she was holding out and not fully committing to the break. We held steady at 1 minute to the intermediate sprint at the 37k mark where I put in an effort and took the sprint jersey ahead of Flick and Miranda. I felt amazing at this point but was suspect that it wouldn't last.

The chase bunch of Stephanie Ives, Lucy Coldwell and Lisa Barry had by no means given up and I feared for their pursuit of us up the climb. As I had predicted, the first KOM is where it all un-ravelled for me. Not surprisingly, Miranda rode to line honours and I really had to max out to get over Flick for second. In quick succession I suffered over the final KOM; a 6k dirt road section that doesn't even remotely resemble MTB'ing, finishing third this time behind Miranda and Flick. After freezing to death following Flick down the final descent, I went from bad to worse. I have no doubt the girls thought I was foxing. My turns went from 50seconds to 20 and I'm not sure if I was actually pedalling for 10 of those! I missed a few turns, and as the Bicycle Superstore guys in the follow car would know, I certainly wasn't playing coy...I was spent.

With 20k to go I wasn't sure if I would finish. I turned myself inside out to stay in contact as Flick continued to attack on the run into town. Despite the gap now a substantial 5 minutes, she was pulling massive turns into the headwind, while Miranda still seemed to be holding reserves. Eventually the race became negative so I led the final 2kms at a leisurely pace, conceding to third. The girls had no problems coming around me, with Miranda taking a somewhat easy victory over Flick. After being away from the road racing scene I must say that I was somewhat impressed with the girls racing, a comment you won't often hear from me! I was exhausted, satisfied and hungry...finally!

Results: Sam Miranda Road Race
Garmin: Peta Mullens Road Race
Photos: Courtesy of Jo Upton Photogrpahy and Darren Francis Casey

Wednesday, 15 August 2012


It's been three weeks since my return from America, and not surprisingly the combination of work, training, renovations and this dreadful winter weather drove me to sickness. It took restraint to have two days off the bike here and there as the prospect of my biggest and most prestigious MTB tour for the year looms in the very near distance; the Tour de Timor. With only four weeks to find the form I lost while overseas, I can't bare the thought of another set-back. Every day is a precious training day, and I was out to make sure that the Rob Vernon Memorial ticked that box. To make the day complete I had chosen to ride out to the race for the extra kms, and when changing to the 'big dog', I realised my di2 battery was flat! My saviour for the day...Darren Casey with a spare...phew!

I had been given a more than sufficient handicap of second limit, 26 minutes. In fact in 2010 I had won off this mark, in 2011 was pushed back to third limit, and now the majority of the men I race with were in the 16-20 min bunch...thank you handicapper! Our bunch was undoubtedly favourites to win with a strong women contingent of Cait Fraser Jones, Kate Finnegan and Rachel Ward to help me pressure the men into rolling turns all day. We rode the first 30k in no hurry, climbed three-tier with numbers in mind, and then had the stronger half of the bunch put pressure on until we caught the limit markers at the 45k mark. With a bunch of 13 we were now leading the race, with the only casualty from here on to be Kate Finnegan suffering a mechanical. To win required everyone to roll through, no exceptions, and despite spending the majority of his time on the front, Peter Sens made sure of this. 

Behind us on the road the 10, 16 and 20 minutes bunches had combined and with 20k to go were 4 minutes in arrears. Jarrod drove the chase but with a large group of 25 the chase was fruitless. Time checks then became inconsistent so I reverted to the old fashioned check over the shoulder. Our bunch had eased considerably in the final 10k; perhaps some were saving themselves for the finish, or maybe the distance had begun to take its toll on their legs as it had on mine. The strongest men remained where they had been all day, on the front; namely the boys from Camperdown, Stephen Pickles and Alistair Tune, and for the purpose of training I refused to miss a turn alongside them. When we neared the 'Telephone Exchange' to turn for the final climb I knew the winner would come from our bunch. Surprisingly there were no attacks as is usually the norm, just Cait Fraser Jones driving us over the crest and a settling feeling of deja vu from two years back.

There was jostling for wheels with 1km to go and I certainly didn't fancy myself for the win so I moved up to second wheel to avoid any carnage. I would be pleased with a top 5. Warwick McGhee seemed happy to lead it out, and so began the nervous process of gear selection, reaction and timing in the final sprint to the line. I knew I had to go at the sight of a jersey, and in my apprehension I went unexpectedly early giving me a jump on the field. I can't say how long I sprinted, but it was long enough to sit back in the saddle for the final 50m slog. I wasn't convinced I had won it until the final three metres, just enough time to draw myself up high to salute, letting out an uncharacteristic scream. Did I just win the Rob Vernon again?! I was in disbelief.

I have now become the first person to win the modern day Rob Vernon Memorial twice, and still the only female in history. In addition, I am the only female to win two Victorian Road Opens. I am so chuffed! Sometimes the wins you don't expect are the most exciting ones...

Results: Rob Vernon Memorial
Garmin: Peta Mullens

Monday, 23 July 2012


After returning home from America it was straight back to reality. The thought of working, riding and finishing renovations on the house was overwhelming, and I began to wonder why I had committed to racing the Blores Hill 6hr after five weeks off the pedals. Then I remembered... I love the trails, I love the people, and it gives me a chance to see my family whom I only manage to visit once or twice a year. So when I had finished work on Saturday, we loaded the Moroni van; Peter Moroni, Jarrod, John Harvey and I, and made the long drive to my parents house in Traralgon while I slept exhausted and soundly snoring in the back seat.

Without knowing how my body would react to any sort of activity, I though that I could at least be prepared for the competition, of which 200 entrants had braved the start. Jess Douglas, the reigning 24hr Solo World Champion, is tough to beat at the best of times and I wasn't sure if her name on the start list made me apprehensive of the pressure to race against her, or pleased at the thought of some company in the first few hours.. It turned out to be a pleasant mixture of both. Having a wheel to follow is under-rated, not to mention Jess' flowing riding style, and it seemed that she would continuously turn my negative words to something positive before I even finished my sentences! As she continued to chat away, I became quiet. Perhaps she didn't realise that I was beginning to suffer behind her...

At about the two hour mark the bodily pain I used to feel when I started MTB'ing three years ago was resounding. My forearms, wrists, shoulders and lower back began to hurt and I wondered if this is what the casual rider feels when they attempt something like a 6hr when under-done? At this point I wished I had bought my TREK Top Fuel 9.9 (Dually) with me to ease the wrath of the beaten track. At the end of the fourth lap Jess' tempo began to hurt me, and I dropped off briefly before chasing back on. I knew the longer I held her for, the less time I would have to spend on my own. I could finally feel my legs on the fifth lap, and really battled to keep with her through to transition, where I stopped, ate, drank, and gave in to everything for the remainder of the day.

My mind and body had gone into shutdown. Not a shutdown relating to nutrition or hydration, but simply my body remembering that it wasn't prepared for this sort of prolonged effort today. I suppose you can only expect so much from a cog when it hasn't been turned in a while, although I had fed the cog plenty of oil while in America! It was timely at this point in the race that I caught up with two life-long friends, Darren Spiteri and Shaun Cattanach. I grew up with these guys in sport and have known them for more than 10 years, and was excited to spend my final three hours in their company. We talked, laughed, crashed and walked together and I remembered what it was like to focus on the presence of friends as opposed to the countdown of the clock...

In the end I still managed to finish second behind Jess, and we all got to go home with these amazing hand crafted trophies, made and designed by local Lenny Van Berkel from left over bike parts. I was a little disappointed that I didn't finish first or third though as my trophy was the only one who's top didn't spin; that's the child in me coming out again! Can't wait for next year :)

In other Moroni's news, Chris Hamilton finished his first 6hr race in 7th, Jarrod in 8th and Peter Casey in 9th. Ev was fifth in Solo Women, while in the Triples 40+, Peter Moroni, Keith Hamilton and John Harvey were also fifth.

Results: Blores Hill 6hr
Garmin: Peta Mullens
Photos: Courtesy of Gippsland MTB Club
Media: Courtesy of Russ Mullo

Friday, 20 July 2012


Sometimes in life we are blessed with opportunities that are hard to pass by. Such as when Jarrod's dad decided that he would like to shout himself, wife, two sons and their partners to America for three weeks...all expenses paid, and hell, why not throw in a few thousand dollars spending money!

What an amazing experience.. I won't go into details but I will give you a quick run down of our route. Beverly Hills - 3 nights - Hollywood Blvd, disneyland and shopping. Santa Cruz - 1 night - Shopping and pier theme park.

San Fransisco - 2 nights - Another tour bus, ride over the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz.
Las Vegas - 3 nights - Shopping, gambling, coyote bar, quad bikes and more gambling. New York - 6 nights - Tour bus, times square, central park, Circus de Soueil, broadway shows.

Miami - 5 nights - Beach, pool, tour bus, hire bikes, pool party, tanning, burning, peeling.
Santa Monica - 1 night - Lost luggage, found luggage, and one last time on the hire bikes along the beach before farewelling America and a VERY long flight home..

As soon as I was off the plane and home, we were out on our bikes. I felt good yesterday, still feel fresh today, and on Sunday and hoping and praying to feel good for the Blores Hill 6hr MTB race... way to make a debut race back in the country!

Wednesday, 13 June 2012


I had a turning point in my racing earlier this year. It was at the Otway Odyssey, and although on paper I believed that I could win this race, what happened on the day bought so much more joy. I felt that it was the first race I had completed where I had made it my own, attacked the race and taken control, regardless of whether I was the best person on the day or not. I was similarly pleased with my second at the Wombat 100k, and even more impressed with my comeback at the Forrest 6hr. It's like I have reached the point where I can confidently stand up in races and say 'I am here'.

For the Australian MTB Marathon Championships however, I will be honest and say that I believed Jenny Fay would be the first female across the line. I was yet to beat her in our two encounters, and without knowing the course at Stromlo, I had resolved to race for the Jersey and title that she is ineligible for. But something deep inside of my wasn't quite content with that..

Saturday morning was an early start; I had to work at ALDI from 5am-8am before hitting the road to Canberra. Fellow Bendigonian MTB'er John Harvey was designated driver and when we arrived on course 8hrs later, I led the way for a course reconnaissance lap. For some reason I was keen to see the finishing loop, which said to me that subconsciously I thought it would be a close finish. Not surprisingly I got lost in the bush and gave up on that idea.

I spent the night at the 'Hendersons' place. What an amazing family! Firstly, three males cooked dinner; important to note that the females were away, but impressive none the less. Secondly; they are full of such positive energy that I went to bed nearly convinced that I could be an Australian Champion the following day.

I was nervous when I arrived at the race. Seeing Richard Peil our team owner, Peter Dowse a team sponsor, and many TREK representatives...I suddenly felt a bit of pressure. I was on a new bike, my TREK 29’er Superfly Elite that had arrived the week before. Despite the fact I was yet to race the bike and had only lifted the leg over it a mere three times, I was confident that a hard tail was the preferred choice for the terrain at Stromlo. Also suited to the terrain was my choice of tyres for the day, a brand new set of Rubena Scyllas!

We started out on fire-trail, and after 7kms, when my average HR was over 170, I couldn't believe we hadn't dropped anybody! Was I unfit? Just a bad day? Or simply nerves? I told myself it was the latter. On the first mentionable climb our start group of 19 dwindled to just five. I unclipped twice on this section in ridiculous circumstances. Was I this useless technically? Maybe I should have raced my other bike? Am I uncomfortable? PETA! Stop arguing with yourself and get on with it!

After losing Ruth Corset in a small crash and Tory Thomas on the following climb I felt a little better. I knew that Ruth was an amazing climber on the road, however not a renowned MTB'er, and that I would never shake Tory technically; this bought us down to three in the very early stages of the race.

Jenny Fay whom I believed was unbeatable.
Jodie Willett, who is a very similar rider to me and is hard to read. She shows no emotion and is as tough as they come.
And I.

The friendly rivalry between Jenny and I didn't take long to heat up. Jenny began attacking the climbs and after a while Jodie decided she didn't want a part it that game. I grovelled to keep in touch over the climbs, and regardless of the race in progress, she would still yell words of encouragement over her shoulder...typical Jen! So easy to love. Eventually I forged past her on an A-Line down an extremely rocky section and started my tactics from there. I figured that if I made up time on the amazing single track, rode tempo up the climbs while Jenny red-lined to catch me, then by the end of the first lap we would start the long fire road section together, and if I was lucky, she may be spent for the second half of the race.

This worked a treat and we came together early on the fire road, with Jodie chasing 1minute behind and 8minutes back to Tory Thomas in fourth, who would later withdraw from the race. Jenny is so much stronger on fire road than I am, and towed me along with what seemed like no effort at all. When Jodie began to close in we worked together and dragged the deficit back out. Once again I rode in tune with Jenny up the climbs, and this time I felt good, better than before. I rode the first section of single track following her wheel, and after cresting the top of a climb I attacked into the descent and never looked back.

I darted through the single track as if in a XC race and felt amazing on the climbs, using the passing Elite Men to gauge my speed. When I started to hunger flat at the 3hr mark (note to self, try to train for longer than 3hrs next time) I told myself to push through to the feed zone; the larger the time gap Jenny and Jodie were to receive the harder it would be for them to pull it back. I started to cramp in my groin and calves, so I eased off the pedals, trying not to free-wheel as this only made it worse, but eventually had to walk the final climb.

The final step of that final climb was elating. I knew then that if I didn't crash or puncture down the final flowing descent, the race win was mine. The jersey, the title, the feeling of being the first female across the line made it all the more pleasing. I came to the realization that I was riding to my fourth Australian title, across four different sports, and ironically to my first jersey. I have finally earned the green and gold stripes and you can trust that I will wear them proudly!

Meanwhile behind me Jodie had forged away form Jenny. I didn't know this until Jodie crossed the line, also cramping, 4.5 minutes in arrears. We congratulated each other, Jodie always an amazing competitor. And then I waited for Jen... I needed to thank her for every word of encouragement she has ever shouted to me in racing, for every kind word she has to say, and for always being a humble winner. She towed me to that jersey, possibly at the expense of her own result, and still she was pleased for me in victory. And I'm fully aware that she will never let it happen again :)

A massive congratulations to all of the Anytime Fitness team with Brendan Johnston 9th in the Elite Men, Richard Peil 3rd in Master Male and John Henderson 2nd in Super Master Male (over 5minutes quicker than me!)

Results: Australian MTB Marathon Championships
Garmin: Peta Mullens

Wednesday, 6 June 2012


My return to blogging has been a long time coming, and I suppose for a while I wasn't so sure that people wanted to read about my life anymore. But the adventures continue as always, and I believe again that there are maybe just a few people who might want to hear what I have to say. So here goes...