With a three month break until the Australian National Road Series (NRS) kicks off again in August, some of our mobius BridgeLane riders have headed to Europe to gain more racing experience.
After the conclusion of the Redlands Bicycle Classic in California, Ethan Berends jumped on a plane to Northern Italy. Just a couple of weeks into his stint, Ethan has finished 3rd at the Gran Premio Valverde in Botticino.
“After finishing 11th in my first race in Italy, I really wanted to push for a better result in the coming races after having learnt a lot about the style of racing over here. The course itself didn’t really suit me as the parcours were fairly flat and only featured two little rises through the typically tight Italian roads. My best chance of a result would be to attack on the insanely steep finishing climb within the final kilometre. With 500m to go and nothing to lose, I attacked but blew just 200m of the finishing line. I pushed as hard as I could to the finish and by the time I crossed the line I had absolutely nothing left in the tank. I couldn’t even stand and had to get someone to carry me to the side of the road. I am really happy with third place, but I am still chasing that top spot. It’s very different racing in Italy and I have learnt a lot about the racing in these few short weeks that I have been here.”
It was a weekend of podiums, with Ben Carman scooping up KOM points on his way to winning the KOM classification at the Boucie de l’Oust in Bohal, North-western France. Bad luck in the finale saw Ben roll in for 12th in the bunch sprint.
“The race was fast from the start and never eased off. The bunch seemed to always be about to split so nobody could relax all race. I was second over the first climb, so I made sure to go for maximum points on the remaining climbs. I tried to force a move later on in the race, but a bunch sprint seemed inevitable. The racing over here is very different to racing in Australia, no team is prepared to take control and the racing is often complete chaos. Coming into the finish I was in good positioning, but unfortunately, I dropped my chain in the final 500m. Still managing to come in 12th on the day, I am pretty stoked with where my form is at the moment.”