CHAMPION MOSS: Cyclist wins big at National Masters
CYCLING: In what could be her last appearance on the racetrack for some time due to the coronavirus, Grafton cyclist Laurelea Moss made it count when she claimed the title of Champion of Champions in the MAS3 category at the 2020 National Masters Track Championships in Brisbane last weekend.
Bringing home a swag of medals, including two gold, four silver and a bronze, the Coffs Harbour Cycle Club member said it was a big honour to take out the title of Champion of Champions.
"Even though I wasn't the most outstanding athlete in my age group, because I did so many events it meant that I got enough points up to see me home," Moss said.
"I managed to gain entry into all the events that I wanted, which is all of them. I'm very enthusiastic about competing because it's really important to have a goal to work towards.
"Otherwise if I don't have a goal it makes it a lot easier to find those excuses that we use for ourselves, a goal it keeps me on track to have these types of events to work towards.
"I just love catching up with the ladies in the cycling community and I had a blast."
With a number of other events on the racing schedule cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, Moss said it was lucky they got to compete in the first place.
"Everything has been called off since, and in hindsight we could have been called off too," she said.
While by her own admission Moss was underprepared for this event, she said the thrill of winning was still exhilarating.
"I'm very happy I could achieve those results even with the minimal amounts of training, with the fires and smoke we had a lot of training sessions cancelled and that made outdoor training really difficult," she said.
"Then we had floods and a lot of rain which affected my ability to get out and train on the track, so I really the training had been minimal. I had been doing sessions on my indoor trainer trying to keep some fitness.
"Obviously I did some intense intervals but probably not as much training as people would think."
Moss's first gold of the meet came in the WMAS 3 sprint event, and was a victory that Moss said she savoured.
"I absolutely smashed myself for it," she said.
"By the end of the five sprints it came down to the last sprint, we were tied on equal points, so I've got to win this sprint and I went for it, threw bike at the line and made it.
"It was exciting hear the cheering and calling out and often when you win you put your arm up but I rolled around on track, my head hitting the handlebars and I almost couldn't get off the bike. I went to walk and my legs were giving out, it just had taken every ounce of what I had and it was such a thrill."
Moss's partner Nicholas Stevens, a rider in Grafton Cycle Club, also raced in the men's MAS5 category in the 10km scratch race event where he finished fourth.
Moss said while she was contemplating having a crack at this year's Grafton to Inverell Cycle Classic, but with event organisers forced to postpone the 60th anniversary of the famed event due to COVID-19 restrictions she was unsure if it would happen in 2020.