We all watch our heros destroy climbs, effortlessly bomb through descents, and seemingly never fatigue as the kilometres stretch behind them. But sadly for many of us dreams of the podium seem out of reach.

But what’s wrong with that?

When I ran across this tweet from Bikeridr friend and contributor @hydec, I thought that it was time to plead a case for the middle of the pack.

You don’t race to win,
you race because you love it.
Not every push is a push for the podium,
but always a push for improvment.

You chase wheels, and defend yours,
and find victories in the small things:
Dropping a wheel, cleaning a section,
feeling the rush, or just going fast.

You love feeling exhausted, but invigorated
as the race comes to and end.
You might round out the back of the pack,
until one day you don’t.

You like not taking thing too seriously,
and thrive on mid-pack rivalries.
Or, you use those rivalries to slowly grow stronger
and leave the middle of the pack behind you.

You race to see what you’re made of,
and make yourself better.

So why do you race? Why isn’t the Sunday ride enough for you? What inspiration can you give friends to keep them motivated and enjoying the race scene, even if they’re not topping the podium?

Photo courtesy of Michael (a.k.a. moik) McCullough