There was an early wake up call the day of the race. When my alarm clock rang at 5 am, I was already wide awake and ready get going to the airport. Destination: the London Nocture Crit.
The team and I landed in sunny London, and within an hour, we had arrived at our hotel – the race circuit was just around the corner. We made it just in time to unpack our bags, grab something to eat, and hit the road. We were already impatient to race.
Unfortunately, our wait lasted longer than we would have liked. In the race before our’s, a rider had crashed. Badly. Everything was postponed. We stood at the starting line for an hour waiting for someone to tell us we could start. Finally, at half past six pm, the London Nocturne Condor Criterium began.
Finally, we were riding. Giorgio made an impressive first lap setting a very high pace. I tried my first attack breaking into the group, while Alessandro and Giovanni put themselves in the lead, riding at a striking race. Thanks to them, I was able to reach the second position in the last lap. I was just one wheel behind last year’s criterium winner. The last two corners were insane.
We rode like maniacs. Then, I heard about five thousand people roar, giving me the strength I needed to sprint to the finish line. I crossed the finish line with my hands in the air, still unable to believe I had achieved this epic goal.
I’ll never forget the moment that came after. I hugged my teammates, my girlfriend, everyone who was there cheering to support us. On the podium we celebrated once more.
After, we relaxed and followed the men’s pro race with beers in hand.
We moved the after party to our hotel and celebrated until … late. Between good beers and a a good talks, we made a lot of new friends. It’s the best part of this crit world.
~ Paulo Bravini, Member of Team Cinelli Chrome and Winner of the London Nocturne Crit