A trip into town.

Apologies on the lack of posts, been running about the last few weeks. The bees are out (as the weather has decided to warm up) so I have been sorting them out and making sure they are all good after their winter break. Last Wednesday (24th) I rode up to London for a front row seat at the Regal Room in Hammersmith to see Billie Myers – unscripted). It was a really great venue, small and very social. Billie did a great set of new and old material with a load of funny banter and anecdotes from her career. A real great night out – Music in my ears, I rode back to Richmond and picked up the last train to Ascot.

Billie Myers at the Regal Room (Hammersmith) - fantastic venue, fantastic voice.

Billie Myers at the Regal Room (Hammersmith) – fantastic venue, fantastic voice.

A bit of a training session coming up this weekend !! I am entered in the 100km Isle of Wight Randonnee. The IoW Randonnee was established by the Wayfarers cycling club in 1985, and uniquely follows a route around the whole of the Isle of Wight taking minor roads and lanes where possible. The event attracts around 2000 participants each
year. If you don’t know already, the Isle of Wight is not exactly the flattest place, there are a number of climbs to test the legs and the sea breeze is going to make things interesting I am sure.

Photos and report after the event. Watch this space.

New Forest Spring Sportive.

Well time to get the bike out and clock up some more miles (But the weather gods had other plans). The proposed script was supposed to be 60 miles through the beautiful country roads of the New Forest National park. Light traffic, the sun on my back, beautiful views of the countryside, ponies, wildife and fresh air. What I actually got was 60 miles of flooded roads, mud, rain, freezing wind (mostly in my face), wet clothes, wet socks, wet feet and a weathered scoul on my face for most of the course.

Lining up at the start. (the clouds are looking angry)

In the early group waiting to get away before the rain. !!

In the early group waiting to get away before the rain. !!

The course was great, but not in these conditions. I almost chickened out and was going to take a short cut back to the car and have done with it, but I told myself the weather may be like this on the day and so its a good test of my will to ride in all conditions. After 4 wonderful rain soaked hours, I managed to get round the course in one piece. Some others were not so lucky as a few of the locals decided to sabotage the course. I am just a rider, I am not going to get into arguments like this. (although you should have seen the speed of the some of the idiots flying round roads with horses on them – I am talking about cars not cyclists – and some idiot throwing tacks on the route, I don’t mind the puncture but some poor New Forest pony is not going to be able to remove a pin in its feet)

Eventually I got back to the car, hid inside with the heater on full blast and turned my bike into a clothes horse to try and dry stuff out before heading home.

The only thing not wet was the inside of the innner tubes.

The only thing not wet was the inside of the innner tubes.

AND just to prove the weather gods really hate me !!!! My boring old commute ride to work gets the best weather yet – and I get to wear a pair of shorts for the 1st time this year. PROOF BELOW

Yeah it was warm enough.

Yeah it was warm enough.

I blame that Sian Lloyd woman… must have upset her in a previous life 😉

Big Ride At The Weekend

So not much to report in the last few weeks. The usual commutes to work and a few extra miles here and there. Got a nice break in the weather last Saturday and got some time in the afternoon to get out in the sun. Just so nice to actually ride without wearing 4 layers of clothing.

So the next big news is I have currently reached £497 of our English pounds in sponsorship so a huge thanks to all my sponsors so far…. am working on getting that total up higher before August the 4th. So if you can spare some change and sponsor me then I and Mind would be most grateful.

This Sunday is another longer ride. “The New Forest Spring Sportive” Hopefully the weather will be kind. I will try and get some more footage on the camera while avoiding the ponies.

The Surrey Hills.

Well I could have stayed in and stuffed myself full of Easter Eggs, but I felt that was not going to help my training efforts (I can always do that tomorrow) So I decided to pack some miles under the wheels and try all of the hilly section of the ride London course in a single ride. The weather was looking like it might stay clear and was probably the best opportunity I was going to get.

I ticked over the first 20 miles to pick up the course at West Byfleet, and then the familiar route down to Ripley and onto West Horsley. Then onto the Surrey Hills and Newlands corner. The first climb up and over Newlands corner was not too bad, I managed to get into a nice rhythm and got myself up and over. The lack of traffic was a bonus on Easter Sunday as there is nothing worse than cars screaming past you while you are slogging your way up some hill.

Down the decent on the other side and onto Gomshall, where we turn right and onto the bottom of Leith Hill. (There is a little climb here they don’t tell you about – but there is a chance to rest the legs with a nice run down to the base of Leith Hill.) I drag myself over the leg burning climb that is Leith Hill and down the suicidal descent on the far side back to the A25 (This road is very narrow, has blind corners and very steep sides – so you have nowhere good to crash if you wanted). Turn right at the end … and we are down through Wescott and on to Dorking. North out of Dorking and we turn right for our nasty little detour over the Box Hill circuit.

I flicked the helmet camera on and videoed this little guide for anyone who is interested in what is in store for you.

After I got off the Box Hill loop, I headed back via Cobham / West Byfleet and immediately got a puncture. (To be honest I was glad of the excuse to stop)
A quick tube change and 10 mins of “pumping” and I was back up and running.

So a total round trip of 70 miles (not too bad) Although the phone ran out of battery before the end of the ride (I am working on a fix for that)

Details of the route here.