HE chased, he attacked, he felt his legs burn up the notorious Mount Buninyong climb, but David Nicholas also got the feeling of pride that comes with pulling on the green and gold winners' jersey.
The Bathurst Cycling Club talent made it an incredible seven consecutive wins in the men's C3 Para-cycling road race at the Road National Championships on Saturday.
As Nicholas had predicted, Queenslander Kyle Willis provided him with a tough battle throughout the 51 kilometre race, with 22 seconds separating them in the end.
It was Nicholas who was first to cross the line in Ballarat in a time of one hour, 29 minutes and 12 seconds.
"This win just means as much as the first one, I love winning at National Championships and being able to pull on the green and gold winners' jersey," Nicholas, who began his road race streak in 2016, enthused.
Nicholas and his fellow competitors did laps of a 10.2 kilometre circuit, one which tested the legs straight away with most of the first 3.5km of each lap spent climbing.
While it is an ascent Nicholas is familiar with, it was still a challenge.
"The hill definitely gets to you and you feel it especially on your last lap," he said.
It was the climb on the penultimate lap where Willis may have thought he'd made the winning move as he attacked and gapped Nicholas, but the Paralympic star showed his experience as he reeled his rival back in.
"I was going with the feeling of what was happening in the race as we had different categories in our bunch so it is always different as to what could play out," Nicholas said.
"Throughout the race I tired a couple of attacks but Kyle covered them straight away.
"On the second last lap I had just done a turn at the front as we headed down to finish, so Kyle attacked from the start of climb and put 10 seconds into me, but I managed to pull his gap back."
As the duo made their way through the final lap it was the descent some 4km from the finish line where Willis again tried to shake off Nicholas.
Once again the Bathurst Cycling Club talent had him covered. Nicholas averaged 34.30km/hr for the race.
"Kyle attacked on the descent on the final lap, but when I caught him, I could see that the effort really took it out of him and he had nothing left, so I attacked and he just didn't have the legs to match it," Nicholas said.
It made it a national golden double for Nicholas once again too, having won both the road race and time trial in his category ever year since 2016.
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