The 2008 Ipoh century ride - 160km
story by Jimmy "Lance" Tan / photos by Choo Hooi Kiang

Ipoh Century Ride vs. Sausage McMuffin - It all started 20 minutes in, a heavy vehicle parked smack in the middle of the road, chaos and coming to a pause, the ever opportunist MKH rider attacked. Match ignited. Now feel the burn baby. Riders coming to the front and making their moves. But they didn't get very far as the pack was still strong, just ten-twenty meters behind and the break was reeled in.

Here I am somewhere in the middle of the ride, an hour or two into it, and numerous rolling hills later, the legs started to feel the burn. That's not good. Not good at all. All those morning sausage McMuffin and chapatti stall adventure before heading "into the office" doesn't really help. Need to regulate and recover.. hopefully fast. Grabbed my gel, sucked it down, and prayed that it will work. That's the third one I have gone through. The next feed zone is not for another 15km. The pace was high and attacks were served up thick from left, right and centre.. and at times under the belt i.e. attacking on feed zones/checkpoints.

It's no fun chasing and bridging up when this happens. The front group was thinned out due to moves like this on the feed zone. The tired body just couldn't bridge up the gap when it's too far. I tried to cover some but after a while my legs just ran out of juice. When the two guys in front of me lost contact of the group on the rolling hills, with my legs unable to respond, there and then, thoughts of muffin came smacking on my face.. and I lost the day.

The long series of rolling hills has shattered the front group to bits. Trying to cover the losses, a good size of us formed the second group. Being the second group, there wasn't much chasing going on as we were far too busy being disorganised and attacking each other. Bummer. Coming into the last 40km, we could see remnants from the first group scattered throughout the road. Swallow, chewed and spit out. By this time our second group was a bit knackered, and our pace stabilises… what, you can't attack now?

The tired legs felt every inch of resistance from elevation on false flat to slight head wind. The 10km to go markers came right up. Ahh, I can smell Ipoh town or was it the buffet at the finish line? Attacks on the feed zone means very little food has been taken since the start of the ride.. and this has left me a bit low in the fuel tank.

Everyone in the group senses the finish is near, and we up the pace a bit a couple of riders doing Tom and Jerry moves. Riders unwilling to move to the front and just sucking wheels, to save one last ounce of energy to sprint for 18th/ 19th placing?? Turning the final corner, the Finish banner up front, legs pumping, guns blazing - it's everyman for himself to the line. Sorry, no proTour lead-out train here. Done, finish, crossed the line 17th place. Ipoh Century 1 - Sausage McMuffin 0.

Now I need some food.. can we still make it for the McBreakfast.


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