South Western Road Club May Cyclosportif
By user12625760 on May 13, 2007
This years South Western Road Club Randonee has been renamed a Cyclosportif. I'm not sure why as this years event was practically indistinguishable from last, except that it ended in Ripley where there is hall and that it rained for the entire ride.
A group of us from Molesey BBT left together at 09:09 but almost immediately we were split up with just two of use off the front and we did not stay together for long. By the time I reached Albury I was on my own but feeling good catching riders from earlier groups. Then in Wonersh I was passed by three riders and managed to grab a wheel. This could have ended in tears as they were pushing on and just outside Godalming the rider just in front of me went down on a left hand bend. How I missed him and his bike and managed to stay upright I don't know. He and his bike were fine. It certainly did not stop them pushing along however he was more circumspect on the bends from then on.
I managed to stay with them until the halfway check near Amberley but while we were getting our cards signed the faller managed to escape of the front so there where then just three of us. However it was clear to me that I was never going to be able to stay the distance with them. Then one of them punctured and I was alone briefly before I joined up with another group. Then we passed the faller who had also punctured, there were lots of riders puncturing. I must have past at least 10, each one making me think it was only a matter of time before I joined them. I did not see them pass me but they may have when I stopped to tighten the screws that hold my water bottle cage on which had worked loose.
>By the time I reached the third checkpoint I was leading a small group and on leaving I was on my own. I wanted to be alone as I climbed Coombe Bottom so no one would know just how slow someone could go up a hill. I failed. Got caught.
Managed to ride the last few miles to Ripley as a pair and since it was down hill it did not feel quite as slow as it could have. Also the rain had eased a bit. I finished at 14:13 approximately which is a disappointing time 5 hours 2 minutes to do 90miles. I have plenty of excuses though.
Not really sure how far it was by the end as once again my speedometer stopped working for part of the ride. I measured the distance as 83 miles and have 104 for the day with an average of 18mph when I finished and 17.8mph when I got home.
I was completely soaked but overall I enjoyed it.