I was so excited to get the opportunity to go to Australia to do my first international MTB race.
This was something I have dreamed of for so long and for it to come to reality was awesome.
On the 5TH of April we flew to Melbourne where we hired a campervan and drove to Bright. Bright is a small town 3 Hrs out of Melbourne.The small town was really clean with plenty of shops, amazing bird life like cockatoos, colourful parrots and plenty of awesome riding. The river that ran down the side of the town had a play area for the little kids then in the main bit of the river there was a diving board and water slides. The water was freezing cold. We also seen some kangaroos in a huge paddock above the town at dawn.The weather was very much like home so it was cool nights and sunny days.
We arrived 2 days before oceania's so we were able to watch some of the Australian Nationals XCO then on Sunday they had the short track race which was pretty cool to watch since we don't have any racing like this at home and figure out who was who. They also had MTB trials bikes going too what was really cool to watch because we don't have any of that here either.
The nerves are high the adrenaline is pumping while waiting anxiously to be called up to the line. The whistle has gone, i got a good start off the line leading the race of 36 riders into the first lot of singletrack. We had hit the first climb hurting and breathing heavily but the three kiwis Ethan,Adam and myself had gaped the Aussies after the first steep climb so that left us three kiwis battling for 1st, 2nd and 3rd. After the first lap we were coming through the feed/tech zone and I heard someone say that we've got 53 seconds on 4th then Adam led us into the singletrack then Ethan and I got past Adam and we kept pushing. On the main descent on the 2nd lap Adam had an unfortunate puncture half way down so that caused him to pull out. Ethan and I got left battling for 1st and 2nd then I started to cramp in my toes and legs and i had to suffer the last 15 minutes of racing because I didn't want to drop off and I knew I had a good chance at this so i kept pushing and managed to keep in front of Ethan in the last passing option and I could feel the adrenaline pumping through my body and i managed to hold off Ethan around the field then it came down to a sprint. At one point I could see him in the corner of my eye so I pushed harder and held him off to take the win. The feeling after I crossed the line felt amazing knowing that all my hard work and training has paid off.
Jacob Turner is one of a number of junior cyclists that NCCC has supported over the years. Our club is active is providing support to junior riders. Part of your membership funds go towards helping junior riders getting to events that they may not have been able to.