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FWCC are incredibly proud of their female competitors who continue to make big strides towards the top level. FWCC/Sprockets rider Natalie Hunter took part in her biggest event yet, the British National Track Championships in Manchester. A velodrome full of screaming school children did little to settle her nerves, especially as she was the only one on the track for the flying 200 and the audience's full attention was focussed on her, and her only. "I started to wind my speed up in preparation to give it some when I quickly found that my nerves had turned my legs to jelly. I found it hard to get out of my seat to accelerate so just had to make do with what I had in the tank". Despite the understandable nerves Hunter managed a 0.2sec PB, knowing she could have gone much faster. Next was the first round of the match sprint. Hunter made it through qualifying and was put up against Sophie Capewell, who went on to win gold. "So I took my jelly legs and put up the best fight that I could. I rolled around the early laps with Sophie following my every move then all of a sudden she saw a gap at the bottom of turn two and went for it. I blocked her off with a sudden dive down to the black line. If she wanted to get past me she would have to go the long way round! Unfortunately, she did, and very quickly!" With Natalie settling into the big occasion it was time for the keirin race. "I was in a good position during the first round until just under two laps to go when I dropped back a few inches from the rider in front and opened up a small gap for the rider below me to try and go for. A clash of bars pushed me up over the blue line and out of contention." The repechage was next and the first three riders went through to the next round. "I again sat in a good position to start with but jumped on the wrong wheel at the sprint and frustratingly finished fourth". To be in the British National Championships, let alone mixing it with the UK's best, is a brilliant achievement with the very real prospect of more to come. Well done Nat!
- Nat Racing.JPG (63.77 KiB) Viewed 374 times
I've got six gears and I'm not afraid to use them...!