For Glen Carabine the weekend’s racing couldn’t have gone any better. Sunday’s birthday boy crossed the line at the Grassroots Trust Team Championship ahead of teammate Heath Lett after the pair had attacked in the category 2 race in Ngaruawahia. Afterwards we caught up with the Thermal Chemistry/Dynamo rider.
A birthday win against a very strong category 2 field greeted Glen Carabine as he and teammate Heath Lett enjoyed the novelty of being teammates bossing the course and the competition with clear daylight to really enjoy a two-up team time trial that concluded with Carabine taking the race win and advancing to third place overall; equal on points with Gordon McCauley of Daikin/Thermal Solutions.
At the end of the day Carabine stepped forward to enjoy two lots of accolades as himself and teammates David Addison, Simon Hammond, Lee McLean, Heath Lett and Jim McMurray won the day’s team classification; a classification in which they now sit third overall after three of six rounds.
“It’s not too often you get a chance to race on a birthday, let alone win and take the team win too. It was as special day all round,” Carabine told us as he reflected on what was a special day for him and the Thermal Chemistry/Dynamo team.
The new course in Ngaruawahia was one of the big changes to this year’s Team Championship presented by Dynamo Events and it was a course that Carabine was already familiar with prior to the third round of racing.
“The course was good. We’d had a look at it a few weeks back and gotten to know how rolling it was and how rough the roads were. I didn’t think it suited me and there didn’t seem to be a decisive spot to make a split happen so we knew we had to make it hard once the race had got past the opening flat section,” Carabine revealed.
Thermal Chemistry/Dynamo were involved from the start with Hammond, McLean and Addison all getting on board with covering breaks before Jim McMurray, Heath Lett and Glen Carabine took over as the aggressors of the day.
“Jim and I gave it a few more digs in the hills before we hit the first of the bigger climbs. We had a plan and it worked when Heath moved up near the front as gaps were starting to appear. I accelerated pretty hard and he jumped on my wheel and we just took off. Once we caught the young lad up the road, we just kept rolling,” Carabine said.
“Eventually it was just Heath and I in a two-up TTT. We got to the final big climb and saw a small chase bunch getting close but I drove it over the top and the gap opened up and we stayed away. It was so good to take the 1-2 and Lee did a great job to sprint for team points to get us the team win. The whole team rode so well.”
Carabine and Lett crossed the line after 2.46.01 hours of racing, 1.11mins ahead of the chasing group led home by GD Pringle p/b Spoken Cycles’ Mike Gilbert and James Harvey; while McLean held on to cross the line 12th a couple of minutes later to add to the team’s points.
Round 4 of the Grassroots Trust Team Championship takes the riders to Onewhero. The course will be one of the most tasking with a summit finish one of three big climbs to take on for the category 2 field. That climb is 8.4km in length and features an early section at 13% so expect fireworks and some explosive racing.