Today was an important day as we departed Launceston & travelled to Devonport, our final port in Tasmania. Each day on this ride has been challenging, and today was no exception, 145km with 1,800m of climbing making this one of the flatter days of the ride so far. With more than usual levels of rest and relaxation from the previous night, the whole peloton worked well together to make short work of the first 50km along the river from Launceston to our first water break in Beaconsfield, stopping not far from the famous Beaconsfield Mine.
From there it was free play up to Frankford, with the polkadot jersey representing Saba Organics once again leading the rabble to the top, putting the pretenders in the bunch back in their place. The rest of the group was left to their own devices to enjoy another day of spectacular scenery. Each day of the ride has been special and different, with the route across the island showcasing the different terrain and history of small town Tasmania. One of my highlights for the day was riding past the Sassafras Primary school during recess and seeing the kids lining the fence to wave us along.
Lunch was very late in the day, 123km to Railton where we stopped at the local velodrome. The opportunity to race was too much to resist for the speedsters in the group with a number of riders testing their limits on the track and 5 riders setting a new Strava King of the Mountain (KOM). The final leg of the ride had the first appearance of wind on the ride but with our evergreen team pro Dave Mac leading the way it was a quick trip into Devonport, ready to rest our legs, recover & rehydrate in preparation for our final day.
As a first time rider on Chain Reaction I was a bit nervous about the dynamic of having the group split into smaller teams but over the last 6 days it has been great fun to spend time talking with everyone, hearing their story, and growing our team beyond the small group of riders shown on the website. The inter-team competition is fun but we are all here to raise money for our charity partners, Starlight Children's Foundation & Very Special Kids.
Following a great dinner, we had a team presentation from the Lendlease/Slattery team. Following some special speeches from Roger Teale and coach Dave McKenzie.
Following this, we also awarded the competition jerseys.
- Navy "Spirit of Chain Reaction" sponsored by LSH Auto Australia went to Justin McDean of the Saba Organics team
- Orange leader's jersey, sponsored by Pure Storage went to Sebastian Catalfamo of the Marshall White team
- Polka dot, Buildsafe jersey went to Andy Hopkins of the KordaMentha team
- Green "Sprinter's jersey", sponsored by Domain went to Paul Rosham of the Domain team
- Black, Mercedes-Benz Melbourne jersey went went to two winners tonight, Steve Wruck and Ben McGann
- The 'Big Show Lendlease/Slattery jersey was awarded to Roger Teale, veteran Chain Reaction rider