Lets be honest – Most of us (and certainly a lot of the regular DN readers) like to lap up the suffering of others, not so much in a Machiavellian way (I have been waiting for ages to use that word), but more in a mutual understanding or respectful fashion. Well, thanks to Angus and Logan we have a great tale of suffering from the weekend just been, yes, from the Great Taupo Classic PRO Massacre.

The boys have only provided me with a few scraps of detail, which is great as it means I can make shit up with impunity, so fingers crossed we get at least 20% close to reality. Lets start with the fact that this was probably the hardest race the boys had ever attempted to undertake… Sure, they had ridden around Taupo before in the mortal ranks (AKA the killing fields), but stepping up to try and suck PRO wheel was a different equation… Preparation for mere survival was therefore key and taking a leaf out of the DN Prep OCD book, Angus was all over it:

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Questionable number colour for the Elites… and, there it is again… Helmet sticker… Unnecessary

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From the sounds of things there was very little time to look down and read this!

How hard and how PRO are we talking here? Well, to help put it in perspective, lets look at the first two place getters shall we? Eventual winner Michael Torkler is PRO for Bissell in the US and won the KOM Jersey at the Tour of Utah this year… Ok, so yeah… he’s quite good then. Here he is taking KOM points in Utah:

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“I’m really looking forward to Taupo this year… I hope they have some fresh Amateurs to feed me”

2nd place? Mike Northey who you may have seen on TV racing in the Tour of Britain this year riding for Node 4-Giordana Racing… Yeah, also a Tour of Southland stage winner and last years winner:

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“Yeah, racing in the Protour is fun, but I love the smell of fresh amateur in the morning”

Good, scene set, now lets cross to the shot of the starting pen for the Elite event on Saturday, looks like a lot of fun, rammed with PRO’s and 160km’s to look forward to:

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“Your Rivet Racers are dead”

Word up to the boys was that the first 24km’s were the hardest to survive and get through as its manic and FULL gas from the gun… How full on? Well, post race intel was that one VERY prominent Wellington cyclist and recent Tour of Southland participant averaged a ball shrivelling 380 watts for the first hour and a half. Fart noise. Does that mean nothing to you if you’re reading this? Well… I would be stoked if I could maintain that sort of power for a 20 min TT! Let alone in a road race! In short, that’s FUCKING hard. This no doubt took an epic toll on our Rivet boys, much like being smashed in the face with a dead cat hard for a few hours. Over to Angus for some words from his perspective:

“Got through the first mental bit, then managed to get through to 60km (I’m like cool, I can do this!!), a crash meant there was a break in the bunch, hard bridging effort to re-join, then started yoyo’ing off the back on the next hill… Game over! HARD SOLO effort to Turangi, joined a couple of other dropped elites then ended up riding home with A Grade”

Ouch… I know that hideous feeling of the death Yo Yo, at the back, off, on, off… The sinking feeling, the doom of knowing that there is still a looong way to go and feeling this way is super NOT good. I can also totally relate to the solo effort required after getting spat out of the back of a rampant peloton and the haplessness of watching it disappear into the distance until you are totally alone.

Logan put in a massive effort to hold on until Hatepe, clocking an awesome 4.01 for the 160km’s… SO painfully close to the magical sub 4 hour barrier! Angus coming in around the 4.15 mark or so. The winning time slightly ‘slower’ this year at around 3.47… Yikes. What to do when you have finished such an epic day of battling PRO cycling terminators? Junk food of course.

The personification of fucked up – Angus hitting the burger as a priority before helmet removal, you know shit has been hard when it rolls like that:

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At least Logan tried to muster a 1/4 smile… Angus only focused on burger inhaling

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I would say “Smile lads”, but the thousand yard stares say it all…

Logan was left to ponder both if the Sub 4 had been ON if he had fingered Garfield (which worked a treat in 5 Passes) and also just how much longer he could justify owning a Porsche whilst still owning old school Dura Ace levers, which had now taken to photo bombing him:

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Damn you garfield…

Somehow Angus managed to drag himself off the couch later that day for the Rivet Racing development programme, taking the twin turbo’s out for the 5km’s kids dash, oooohhh, good on ya maaaaate!

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One of these kids looks a lot happier about this set up than the other… Sophie clearly gutted her bike isn’t carbon

Granted, this is the first family reference we’ve ever had on DN, I must be going fucking soft… But kudos to the Rivet family. If these two ever end up winning races, you saw it here FIRST! Also of note, the most ‘questionable business name of the year’ award goes to the store photobombing Angus there, should we be putting those two words in the same sentence people? Hmmmm…

Well done and full R.E.S.P.E.C.T to Angus and Logan, you stepped into Skynet HQ and managed to come out with some epic experience, HIGH expectations that when you return to the mortal ranks at the upcoming Rice Mountain Classic you do some terminating of your own.

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