12 months ago Hal, Ray and Harry were lining up on the start line of B grade Support race at the Shimano Supercrit. They managed to get Hal on the podium with a 3rd place.
We then hung around to watch the A grade support race and even that looked levels above what we thought we could achieve.
Jump ahead 12 months to Sunday at 1:30pm Hal, Ray, Harry and Steve are sitting on the start line of Elite Teams Supercrit alongside their experienced teammate Jonathan Cantwell.
There has been a lot of progress in the last 12 months and yesterday was a great way to finish off the year.
It was great to see Ferg, Martin and James racing in B grade support, James Danos in C grade support and to have Elizabeth as only a 15 year old racing in Womens Elite.
Jonathan was the best performer of the day taking out a Sprint Prime and finishing 5th overall.
Here is a short recap from Hal.
I knew it would be a long day because Ray and I wanted to watch all of our riders race so we headed down to see B grade kick off at 8:15am. I know it's just another race but I was really nervous, mostly because I just wasn't sure how I'd go. Harry said to me he felt the same in the lead up to Red Hook Crit earlier this year.
The day was made to run smoothly with the support of dad (James Hunter), Oz from Melbourne Altitude Training and the guidance of Jonathan Cantwell.
After a quick warm up ride and team meeting we lined up as close to the front as possible. With a bigger field I didn't want to get stuck down the back and not be able to move up.
Honestly once we started racing all I was thinking about was riding smart position and staying close to my teammates. unlike other weeks I knew I wouldn't be required to do any work and I could just leave that to the more experienced teams. The pace was hot but nothing we couldn't handle. It took me a few laps to get into the swing of things but the first 50 minutes flew by.
As we ticked over an hour of racing I knew I'd make it to the finish and started thinking about being in a good position to drop Ray and Jonathan off at the finish. With only a few minutes left I was riding good position but as the pace ramped up with 3 laps to go and I quickly lost it, Jonathan was on his own battling it out in the lead 10 riders. I rode hard until the last corner and then just rolled across the line.
It was a great experience for me, Ray, Harry and Steve to ride with Jonathan yesterday and the last few months.
It will be interesting to see how far we can take this in the next year.
Thanks to the team supporters SwiftCarbon Australia, Speedpro Cycling, Visy, Melbourne Altitude Training, Snap Fitness Wantirna, Sram and Lazer Helmets
All photos by Simon Atkinson