GMC Training Camp Report

by Morgan Smith

380km weekend done and dusted!

It all started Friday rushing down after for a massage after work then off to the bike shop to pick up the beast. (My bike)
“Morgz”! They had a plan… So there I was arm twisted into the Hurt box kilo TT.
Don’t start too hard being their only tip.   I didn’t listen but managed to hang on to record the top time 1.19.

The camp.
Being last to arrive I had the airbed on the lounge floor and trash talk was a rife so a late night was a certainty.
We were off at 7.30 leaving Whangamata behind us and picking our sprint point, my legs were feeling dead.  I tried to look after them for the first half of the ride until Gordy made it clear that the hopefuls for the tour of Southland had to be pushing hard all day.  The next three climbs I hit hard and I felt them.  I had to get through the bad patch sometime but when?  Then it was time for Whangapoa the big one!  Half way through our 230km ride and a race point.  Gordy hit it before it started, me Scotty and Brad followed.  A quarter of the way up Scotty attacked and gapped us soon after Brad dropped away which just left me and Gordy to chase.  At 1km from the top my legs wouldn’t do what I was telling them, with a disappointed sigh I let Gordy know and away he went.  That’s how it finished and we descended down for lunch at Coromandel.
Up and over until we hit the coast.  We split into two groups and gave the slower guys 5min.  I was feeling sick so down went the fingers to try to feel better.  We motored along the coast soon catching the other pack.  Halved in size the turns got longer, I was starting to cramp from Tapu so I started sitting on.  Finally we reached Thames and my hamstrings went bang!  I stopped to stretch then rolled to Kopu to meet the others.  A few of us headed off in front of the others to pace ourselves up the Kopu climb.
Half way up Gordy and Hardy zoomed past closely followed by Scott and Brad. We soon arrived at the Whangamata turn off.  My legs were feeling better finally!


At the top of the forest I stopped and waited while others carried on.  When we reached the bottom Gordy told me it was time to step into our work.  Sweet I said and cruised up to 45km and climbing!  We flew passed 1-2 people at a time and those who could jump on did.  Lapping it out we were closing in on the sprint point.  Each time I took a turn I picked it up; Paddy went too soon and stalled at the top of the last bump.  I rolled through and flew down the other side until it levelled out then stood up and started sprinting 300m out with Gordy on my wheel.  I held my acceleration till the 50m mark then Gordy rolled over the top. “A pro lead-out” Gordy said to me.  I was fizzing.

I woke up feeling quite good.  I was relieved as I went through my same routine. Porridge with bananas, and a Milo.
We came to the first climb of the day and I was there to play.  Matching the others tempo as we started to warm up.  Heading towards Tairua we started to lap it out and the bunch split into two.  With the town sign approaching I began picking up the pace and people were dropping away.  This is more like it I thought to myself as only Gordy was left on my wheel.  Swinging around the last corner I saw the sign and sprinted out of the saddle.  There was no lead out this time.
Pumpkin hill our next target and I was feeling good, as the pack reached the base of the climb I started to cruse up finding it easy.  Looking back over my shoulder there was a gap so I just kept the same pace with my heart rate down at 130bpm. I looked a second time and the gap back to the few chases was still there.  Ok, time to play catch me if you can I thought to myself as I pushed harder.  No one caught me.
We headed towards Whitianga riding tempo in the wet.  Storming the cafe in force the lads were digging into pies and coffees to try and get some warmth, leaving a flood behind.
On our way back we practiced protecting one rider as the southland team drove the front.  It was cool to learn these things.  How to ride tempo and protect your leader.  Once again we split in two but this time we pretended to have the yellow jersey in our procession.  It’s hard to lap it out at 80-90%, you have to control your pulls so that they aren’t to slow or too fast.
At the top of the forest me, Gordy and Uncle Rod spun back to base camp with 150km in the bank talking trash which we are all good at.
Thanks to all the GMC lads for a massive weekend! Good company and good competition.

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