Port to Port – Stage 4
Cam’s Wharf to Nobby’s Beach Newcastle
The final day. Some serious logistical issues to drop cars and get to a remote start line, requiring a 5am wakeup, together with a dire weather forecast and the promise of ‘beach riding’, had the quantum team and most of the peloton sitting at the start line ready to get it over and done with.
The reality turned out much different however as the weather stayed sunny and the days racing along the picturesque Newcastle coast and was pretty enjoyable, apart from maybe the beach……
We need to talk first about the beach section as it dominates all thoughts about the stage. About 15km in after some fast riding thru the burbs, we are directed onto Blackman’s beach for a 2km transit along the waterline, at high tide. Whilst it is great for the photos, the reality is it was tough, kills the bikes and not something you would do by choice, i.e. pointless. Quote of the day from unnamed source, ‘suffer boys, I’ve got a demo bike’. The measure of toughness to ride it was Pete Selkrig who was doing 7kph pulling 400W whilst just Steve just ran beside him at the same speed. Not sure who got the best deal.
Moving on, the long section after the beach was eons of open cycle path, shared with dogs, kids etc which whilst convenient, was pretty dangerous for all concerned with some pace lines clocking around 35-40km/hr. We then pitched into Glenrock and had some dry single track to enjoy, the first time for this race!!! It was great fun although most people were so crossed eyed with exertion just to get there, that few were pulling smooth lines through the ST.
Post Glenrock we traversed a few headlands along the coast and ended up sprinting to the line at Nobby’s, which was a great finish location. The Quantum team put in a really solid performance over the 4 days, representing at all levels. Jindra finished the highest in open male at 12th, with Andrew, Jason, Michal and Scott all putting in solid performances. Up the categories, Steve grabbed a couple of 3rd place finishes in M1 and finish 2nd overall in GC for M1 which he was stoked about. Alex was also getting stronger day by day and only just got pipped for 4th in GC. Angelique was fantastic, finishing 3rd in M1 ladies, and Paul also proved very consistent and enjoyed being able to participate in the event with his son Jacob.
The Quantum team would like to our sponsors TWE, whose bikes and wheels proved very dependable and infallible in some of the most testing conditions ever experienced, Rubeena tyres with their wide range of options that could address every condition we experienced and EBL importers; with beer like Bakalar, how can you be unhappy?
In summary, Port to Port v1 was a great experience and whilst first year teething problems were evident, there is plenty of potential and we look forward to the improvements next year!