Lusia Steele (Johnstone Jets) reports from her experience of the Prudential RideLondon Youth Crit race...
This was my first time taking part in the ride London and I was happy to be able to do it as part of the Scotland team.
When we arrived at the train station on Saturday morning everybody was still half asleep and quiet but it wasn't long until other people on the train were probably regretting getting on the train with a bunch of excited and nervous teenagers. The train was very long but we finally got to London and after a long unplanned adventure to the course from the train station we finally got there and already I could see how big and exciting this race was going to be, the streets were full of people watching and cheering already.
The course was looking good, very different to the races up here, wide roads and certainly some different sights. The race was a team race and we were at a slight disadvantage because it was only me and Alison however we both knew that and just raced anyway.
Our race started at 7:15 and I managed to fight my way to the front and luckily they didn't grid it so I was right at the front. I was able to stay with the bunch and spent a lot of the race at the front . The race was fast and people were attacking all the time I managed to jump on 1 or 2 attacks and with 2 laps to go of the 30 minute race I was in the top 5 but when we crossed the line with 2 laps to go people started putting on the pressure I tried to stay top 15 and managed successfully until I got squeezed into the barrier on a tight corner of the last lap and ended up towards the back of the bunch and the sprint began and I had no legs left they were dead. I think I finished 47th which I wasn't very pleased with however I was happy with how I rode.
We didn't get to the hotel until 11 o'clock and by then everyone was tired and hungry, we got dinner and then it was time for bed. The next day we had a great breakfast and recapped on our race and our journey to London we had a good laugh and then it was time to start heading back home to a rainy Glasgow which no one was pleased with after it being shorts and t-shirt weather in London. I think we all got to know each other a whole lot better and everyone had a good time.
I would like to thank the team for some good chat and also Lynsey, Kev and Chris for their excellent coaching and managing. Also a big thanks to Scottish Cycling and Prudential. If anyone gets the opportunity to go in the future I would definitely recommend going because the atmosphere is brilliant and its not often you get to ride the same course as big riders like Laura Trott and Katie Archibald.