Cycle/MTB 104km, inc. 102km/4h49 (inc. 10 min stopped) HR140(168)
Lovely day for a ride. With 1200 other riders we started at 9am from Winchcombe School. I was early on the start line, to make sure I didn’t get too caught up in the slower riders up the first climbs, and met Neil Pugh there. He was on a cyclo-cross bike which, given the dry conditions, was looking like a good choice. I think I was in about the first 200 through the school gate, and worked hard early on to get clear air. On the startline:
Got to the first checkpoint (about 20km) at 9:58, and starting to really enjoy the ride. Arm warmers came off here. Once you’d climbed, the view from the tops were fantastic! I got into a group of cyclo-cross riders soon after, and shared a bit of pace-making with them. Arrived at CP2 at 10:36, CP3 (44km – the cake stop) at 10:55. Stopped briefly for a cake bar and to borrow a track pump and put some more air in my tyres – up to +50psi from their usual 35-40psi, mainly to help the bike roll along on the tarmac and on the hard-packed offroad surfaces. CP4 came up at 11:48, CP5 (75km?) at 12:25, where I caught the first woman on the road. (And then there was a hard loop around Snowshill including a killer climb with mud I had to walk the last bit of) and finish, sharing the pace with another guy on a cyclo-x bike, at 13:49.
Dusty bike, certificate, and massive bread puddings at the finish:
Stopped for a bacon sarnie and a cup of tea before packing the bike away and heading home. A bit sunburnt. Fantastic day out on the bike, that’s what all this training’s about! Ranks with some of my favourite ever bike rides.