I flew out to Louny on Wednesday 23rd July from East Midlands airport. The weather was good in the UK, but was going to be very hot in the Czech Republic. The bike got to Louny in one piece (which this year was the first time). The bike was still in bad condition so making it harder to ride, as I am still sorting out another new bike.
I had a ride around the course on Thursday with a couple of team mates, we know the course very well, but this year it had to change and be made shorter due to changes in the roads. After a good ride, I went to have a sleep and look over the bike to make sure all was ok after the journey. On Friday the weather was very warm around 30 degrees, we all had another training ride and made the most of the good weather. In the evening I got bitten by a very large mosquito and my hand and wrist started to swell up.
On the morning of the time trial I felt a bit unwell and my hand was looking red with puss coming out of the wound. The weather was very hot reaching 33 degrees, I got the bike chipped and read to go. On the start line my heart began to beat fast, a lot more so then normal. On the warm-up I was sick several times and did not feel too good but decided to race. 5,4,3,2,1, go. I was off I had a good start and was into my stride. There was a head and cross wind along the course which knocked the speed down by about 3mph from the day before when I was training. My hand was irritating me and hurting a lot, on the turn around point I was starting to lose my pace, I still managed to pass 4 riders along the way though but everything was hurting and I felt very weak and sick. I came over the line in 14th position with a time of 27:09, not the best and a few seconds off, but taking into account how I felt it was the best I could have done.
After the time trial I had a small bit of food, but found it hard to eat, as I felt very sick. I went back to the hotel to rest and get ready for the Criterium later the same afternoon. When I woke up I did not feel well, and told my team mate I was not going to do the next race, he said give it a go and see how I felt. So I got on the bike to warm-up, I was sick again and had a very bad head. I lined up on the start grid, the gun went off and it was race on again. They attacked from the gun and I pushed hard to stay on, every time I pushed I felt sick (and was), I decided to pull up after 3 laps and went back to the hotel.
In the evening I went to bed, sick, hot and sweaty, my teammates and other riders went to the after race party. I did not have the energy to go to the party and just wanted to sleep. I’ve never been bitten before, and when I got home I went to the doctors, and they agreed the bite was making me feel very unwell due to a reaction. I am feeling a bit better now after some rest, and its back to training hard again.