Parcours athlete Maddy Nutt took on the finale of the Gravel Earth Series on Saturday. A tough race saw Maddy finish 5th on the day meaning she took an incredible 3rd overall in the series. We sat down with Maddy shortly after to get the full lowdown on the race!
Maddy: I started strong towards the front through a technical section before hitting a mud patch and annoyingly unclipping. I then had to run a section, as I was in totally the wrong gear and lost a fair few positions chasing back.
After that, I managed to work back to ride with Amity, and we worked well together for the first couple of hours. I knew she’d be better at pacing than me, so I was in good company (and we could chit chat a bit too!). Unfortunately, we managed to take a wrong turn though, adding over 1km to our day, but turned back and rejoined the course (this did mean we lost a couple of places), stopping other women from making the same mistake.
At 106km after the second feed, I saw Xav flying up the start of the 12km climb, so pushed on up the climb too. I managed to distance myself from the other riders after two big climbs, but was suffering badly from dehydration, as I decided not to wear a hydration vest. (Special shout-out to the rider who handed me an extra bidon! I might have shrivelled up without that).
I suffered to the third feed where I was told I was just behind 3rd, but with my left quad beginning to cramp, I was pretty sure I didn’t have enough left in me to speed up through the final section and catch them.
In the end I finished in 5th, just 2 mins off the podium, after Geertje rode an outstanding race post puncture and worked her way back through to the podium on the day.
It was a really brutal race with the stats coming in as 3400m of climbing, 180.3km ridden (after the added wrong turn 🤣) and 184w for 7hr55!!
I would just like to say cheers to The Gravel Earth Series for creating such a brutal final and series this year! It’s been incredible to be a part of this community in its inaugural season, and I’m excited to see what’s to come for GES in 2024!
Keep an eye on the Parcours and Maddy's social channels over the next couple of weeks to find out more about her final race of the season 🌈