Submitted by Cindy McNett.
Seventeen ladies started in the Cat 4 division of the Lake Sunapee bike race. Our course was a clockwise loop around Lake Sunapee.
The weather was cool and overcast (surprise,surprise). The start/finish line was on the access road to the Mt. Sunapee resort, so we coasted downhill at the start and turned around a rotary.
The pace seemed pretty slow at first, and for the first third of the course the Cat 3 ladies who had started 1 minute ahead of us were within sight. We started to get into some nicely rolling hills. I was in the wind pulling too much at first, so was more careful to draft and rest going downhill and on the flats. On the uphills, I set what I thought was a good clip. I knew it would be an uphill sprint to the finish, so I wanted everyone nice and tired when we got there.
The hills became longer and seemed to be stacked on each other on the back stretch of the race, on an old, cracked and potted road that curved around the south side of the lake. We were catching Cat 3 stragglers.
We came onto the main road going back to the resort, with more rolling hills. I was comfortably in the lead group, and couldn’t believe it. Around we went through the rotary, and I managed to take that well enough to pull into the lead, with about 5 riders right behind. The steep climb to the finish started, and how this bike climbed!. I thought “you are not getting passed at the last second – MOOVE IT!!” They were right behind me, but all I focused on was getting to that white line without getting passed.
On the road near the finish afterwards I spotted a tiny turtle hatchling, and I gave him a ride to the woods.