'The Race' Poem

Riders form rank on the starting line, 
Heart beats jumping and thumping in time 
A silent veil covers the field of loud colour 
Nervous glances and nods exchanged amongst one another. 

The commissaire shouts. The flag goes up 
Commence battle of riders, the fight for the cup. 
Eyes flash behind dark glasses. Keep rivals near. 
Watch the pack for movement, breaks try to get clear. 

At the opportune moment you time your attack 
Too early you'll falter, too late get pulled back.
Stealthily move forward, a team-mate close by, 
You click down a gear, push hard, catch his eye. 

The radio crackles, "Open the taps!" 
Use every fibre in your body to establish a gap. 
Adrenaline flows, sweat beads on the brow 
This is your moment. Right here. Right now. 

After three long minutes you chance a look back, 
You've opened two hundred yards on the bulk of the pack.
One rider in tow, you're not fully alone
Time to calm down now, get in the zone.

Like comrades you toil for twenty hard miles
Working in unison, clockwork in style,
No chance to surrender, no chance to drop back,
Commit to the cause, stay clear of the pack.

Final climb approaching, you sit second wheel
Your chance of success is becoming all the more real
Throw away your bidon. End your alliance.
It's all for one now, a battle to triumph.

You jump out the saddle. Swing out. Sprint forward.
He can't react, leave him grimacing, exhausted.
You power on, tunnel vision, you see the light,
Crowd roaring, the finish line in sight.

On the final straight with arms raised to the sky
Your victory salute waves the doubters goodbye
The podium steps beckon, the medals shine
This was your race. The Race. Your time. 

'The Race' describes my first season on the road racing circuit. Demonstrating the mixed emotions, feelings, pain and triumph associated with my first win. Cycling is a sport where races are played out moment by moment, no one is ever sure of the result until you cross the line. I hope this poem conveys the excitement and enjoyment that this experience brings.


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