Track cyclist Jason Christie loves a challenge

GEORGE HEAGNEY
Last updated 12:00 26/01/2013
Jason Christie
MURRAY WILSON/Fairfax NZ
BUSY BOY: New Zealand Cycle Classic stage three winner Jason Christie won’t have much time to recover because he will be competing in the New Zealand track championships next week.

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Giving his legs an absolute thrashing during the New Zealand Cycle Classic may not be the best preparation for Jason Christie for next week's track nationals.

Christie won the third stage of the tour yesterday after riding most of the long, hilly stage with a small breakaway group, before taking off on his own for the final 25km.

The New Zealand track championships are in Invercargill next week and while most track riders gave the road tour a miss, Christie wanted to give it a crack.

He hoped he won't be too burnt out after winning the 161km stage from Palmerston North to Apiti and back, with a busy few days on the velodrome coming up.

"I ride the individual pursuit, team pursuit, points race, scratch race and kilo [time trial] down there," he said, which will be hard to do after a lot of riding during the tour with the Armstrong Motor Group.

He was one of only a few riders in the tour who will be backing up in Invercargill and will have just three days relaxing at home, in Ashburton, before he is back on the bike.

Christie did well to win the tough stage as the riders battled the wind throughout.

He went solo with 25km to go and stormed home to win in 3hr 59min 27sec, 1min 50sec clear of second place.

Going all out for the win would make the rest of the tour hard for him, especially today's hill-top finish, but he was pleased to have a stage win under his belt.

"I'm feeling OK. It was actually a really hard day but to be honest I'm probably going to be pretty buggered."

He sat in 12th place after yesterday's stage but would probably take it easy before he gets back on the track. "Hopefully I recover well but I don't see it happening," he said.

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