Back wheel taped up to help keep the cracks under control and we are set to ride another super bumpy 48km stage.
It all started ok until the 14km mark when my rear derailleur hanger snapped. Converted my bike into a single-speed, which of course is virtually impossible when you run a oval chainring, anyway, managed to get it going sort-off with the 32×14 gearing… super hard up the hill until the free-hub gave up the ghost. Tried to zip tie the cassette but that didn’t last more than 200 meters.
Ended up having to run/walk/coast the last 15km… reminded me of the BC-race.
I had 20 minutes spare but lost lots and ended up 3 minutes behind in 2nd.
Matt Larkin had a flat on his tubeless early on and struggled getting it up and running again a couple of times then finally deciding to use a tube. He lost 20 minutes and relegated him into 3rd overall. He’s got 8 minutes to make up to Dan Isaacs for 2nd spot, which is a hard call on a 33km loop.
I managed to get hold of a sponsor bike from a local manufacturer “Asama Bicycle”, super stoked, even though it is slightly small and a bit heavier than mine, it is a brand new CUBE aluminium with XT components and ride nicely. Got the saddle up as high as possible and dropped the bars a little, now it’s show time to get the 3 minutes back and hopefully ride into yellow for the sponsors 🙂