I was rather concerned about day 2 starting at the top of Perisher because we woke up to the wind punishing our accommodation at 3am. Anyway had breaky and headed up the ski tube once at the top we were greeted with 5 degree temp and a wind chill factor of cold. Andy said it would be cold for a bit then warm up after we got down the mountain but, on the start line with rain threatening this QLD mtb rider donned the jacket.
Well the mountain traverse stage from Perisher to Buckenderra lived up to it's name. By then end we completed a bit under 90km with about 1800m of vertical ascent. For all you Qld folk that like doing Mt Nebo it was Nebo twice at race pace. I really don't know how to describe it, you start in alpine forest and end up down on farmland. From the get go there were about ten guys that were out to make a statement, after 5km I was dropped by the lead bunch, I didn't let this bother me knowing that there was going to be alot of climbing ahead of us. The first feed station was about 20km into the stage and Ben from Osprey told me the guys were about 5min ahead of me. By the time I got to the bottom of the gully the bunch was insight and then the climbing begun. Over the climbing part of the course I manged to get past afew guys, knowing that towards the end of the course was going to be fire roads and wide open space I wanted to put some time into the guys rolling on 29 ers. I got to ride with Lloyd and Scott from GSC for a while and after a bit I got myself in a really good rhythm and rode out by myself once again. The picture above shows one of the sheep stations we rode through for the last feed station. No we didn't eat the dogs.
For the last 20km I managed to hold my position and drag abit of time back that I had lost from stage one. Once I rolled over the line Darryl from shotz was kept busy trying to keep everyone hydrated and from what I saw all the competitors were thankful. It wasn't until this time I actually realize how hot it was either, pretty interesting starting in almost frozen conditions to finish in the baking hot sun.
I manged 6th over the line for the Osprey mountain traverse stage.
Day 3 soon