There is something to be said about pinning on a race number at the Hawthorn Cycling Club criterium course, the Teardrop. The first time is always the most nerve racking with your resting heart rate skyrocketing, trying to get yourself to relax is just about impossible.
The Teardrop course is second to none; just over a 1km loop and set amongst the beauty of the Kew Blvd, it’s easy to forget you’re only a couple of km’s away from the CBD until you take the first left hand turn and see the city skyline in the distance. Heading up the back straight your heart rate spikes again as you see the infamous teardrop corner approaching. Your mind races; get in a good position, get the best line you possibly can, be in the right gear to put down the power after the corner and KEEP YOUR LEFT PEDAL UP! As you take the corner and come out the other side you’re confronted with the infamous climb to the finish line. DRIVE, DRIVE, DRIVE, ignore the burn, enjoy the hurt and get across that line.
For HCC, summertime crit racing is one of the highlights of our year. Our volunteers and committee members love having all our members, guests and spectators (even Daisy the dog who became a feature this year) down at the Teardrop getting involved. We really couldn’t enjoy our racing to the level we do without all the support, so a big thank you.
We would like to give a big call out to our sponsors of the summer crits. This year we welcomed Physiohealth and it was simply fantastic to have the crew join us on quite a few occasions offering participants a good rub down. For our members, Physiohealth have offered some fantastic discounts and opportunities so make sure you check out TeamApp for all details.
Thanks to the Sufferfest for their support of Women’s cycling and developing the next female champion by giving away a training video to every women who placed 5th this season.
Winners Australia has been providing HCC with some fantastic giveaways for some seasons now and fuelling many of our race winners.
One of our long standing sponsors that we’re very proud to have partnered with is Giant Cycling Australia. Again this year, Giant donated vouchers to a lucky Junior and Women’s competitor and the big prize of the Giant Propel bike went to any rider who participated in more than 6 Open Races. Congratulations again to Paul Watkin. We asked Paul what it’s like to race at the Teardrop, win a bike and be a HCC member, here’s what he had to say:
How long have you been racing at The Tear Drop?
P: I started racing this season, so my first crit was 8th October. I think I only missed 3 or 4 races all season.
What do you enjoy most about Crit racing?
P: It’s a really convenient way to get some good exercise in mid-week – I can just ride down after work and be home by 8. I also enjoy the friendly atmosphere and course up at the Teardrop.
What’s the plan for the new Giant Propel Advance Pro 1 bike?
P: I plan to use the Giant as my main bike, probably hanging on to my old one for wet weather rides!
Was there a highlight race for you this summer season?
P: I would say one of the early races when my fitness caught up with the initial shock of trying to hang on up the climb every single lap to feeling a bit more comfortable and being able to move up the bunch.