Sunday Jul 01, 2007

British Cyclosportif

The day finally came.

Given the recent weather I was not looking forward to the ride. I had my excuses prepared, poor weather, poor preparation and as I went to bed I was feeling poorly. So 2 paracetamol and 2 ibruprofen and early to bed, for a 4:30 alarm. Two more paracetamol in the morning and I was off (we had run out of ibruprofen otherwise I would have taken them as well). At least this way I would be o.k. for the start.

Got away at 6:55 on their clock and out of Greenwich into not the most picturesque area of England however all along the route were depart posters and the roads were having the potholes filled and man hole covers refitted.

The run to Rochester was uneventful, although some of the behaviour of the cyclists left a lot to be desired. Clearly it is not motorists or cyclists that are the problem. It's people.

At Rochester we turned South towards Royal Tunbridge Wells and straight into a horrible headwind. By now with the problems of traffic in London and this head wind my average speed had dropped to 17.48mph and the rain started. However the rain never got to more than a light drizzle so me wearing two tops, leg warmers and waterproof overshoes was both over the top and causing me to overheat.

At 50 miles to go I started to loose the plot, I was depressing my self by watching my the miles count down on my speedometer and my legs were hurting. At this point I switched to the Average speed display which showed 17.5mph so I reached in my pocket for the energy gel I had been given in the registration pack. To say it tasted horrible does not do it justice, but since by this time I was drinking an energy drink that was a mixture of black currant and Lime I was not best placed to be rational about the taste. Either it was fabulous or it was all in my head all the time. My legs stopped hurting and I was doing 23mph with a cross wind since we turned East.

Then we turned North and for once the wind was behind us. A group of us got a chain going and we were skipping along at 28-30mph. In the final 5 miles was when I hit my maximum speed as we flew into Canterbury.

My speedometer, which since we did not get rained on worked, gave these results:

Distance

119.09 miles

Time

6:33:39

Average Speed (according to the bike computer)

18.22mph

Average Speed (manually)

18.15mph

Max Speed

41.3mph



I just got a text message from the organizers and my official time is 6:47:20 which is 17.67mph (using the official distance of 120miles) including all the stops. I stopped twice at feed stations and for every red light.

All in all a most enjoyable day, although my daughter has now vindicated one of my excuses, I have a temperature of 102ºF. Hardly a Greg Lemond moment but at least I'm not going mad.

Thursday Feb 15, 2007

Etape du Britain

Now I just need to get a place.

It is kind of pricey but I will still be there. You get to ride the route of stage 1 of the Tour.

Anyone joining me?

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This is the old blog of Chris Gerhard. It has mostly moved to http://chrisgerhard.wordpress.com

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