With my quad not keen on running, I decided to throw my effort behind some cycling some good distances. Work was not too stressful and the weather was dry so I’d managed to fit in three 200k DIY audaxes over the past couple of weeks. For a change this year The Dean was being run with two starts: 6:00 and 7:30am. I’m never too keen on an early start and being a relatively fast rider, opted for the later start. This meant more of the likely wind and rain but in the end it wasn’t too torrential, just a couple of heavy showers around Newent; there was a hell of a tailwind back from Chepstow though. Feeling not so fresh after my recent increase in cycling mileage I was soon dropped by the fast group led by Nik Gardiner out of Oxford (he’d already ridden from Bath and would ride home at the end having finished fastest by quite some margin), but reeled quite a few of them in later in the day. It was good to be riding through the early starters – normally I hardly see anyone after the first 50km. Another qualifier for Paris-Brest-Paris ticked off, back to collect my last receipt in the centre of Oxford 11h53 after leaving Peartree services.