JOGLE – Prologue

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JOGLE Prologue stage was completed this evening. I let slip that the furthest point was Duncansby head lighthouse (Not John O Groats) so after some debate we cycled out to officially start the ride, a gentle 2km ride. The evening was glorious sunshine with crystal blue skies amd we could see the Orkneys and outer islands. Tomorrow is an early breakfast and we are off in anger.

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Gran Fondo Completed

Well that was a ride, glorious sunshine with clear blue skies. Bikes ready we got out of the starting gate some 30 mins after the front runners. It’s a pan flat course out through the fens but the scenery was beautiful. The brother decided to get his race head on amd got on up the road ahead of us. Craig and I took it a bit easier… and we could not stop smiling when we came across this sad figure by the side of the road.

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His pump was a bit knackered, so in true top gear style we decided to leave him and carry on.

Eventually he obviously found some gas from somewhere (I suspect last night’s curry) and he caught us up.

We picked up a few cycle road trains on the way round and the average speed started to climb. The end of this event never seems to come and I was paying the price for trying to be a hero on the front earlier so getting back was a painful last 10k.

Rest day tomorrow and then the brown stuff really hits the spokes.

Gran Fondo Warm Up

So today is the warmup .. 70 mile Gran Fondo around the flat fens. We are on our way in the car to the start hoping it gonna warm up a bit. It’s supposed to be 20 something but it feels more 10 something at the moment. It should be a simple ride, except the large quantity of beer and curry we scoffed last night may present various problems on route.

Will post a live track link here … once am underway as a test for future rides.

Watch my live activity “Live Activity 05/06” now!
https://t.co/vlLWfa4Q2T
(https://twitter.com/Scottworld/status/739417789836886017?s=02)

Updated

Hope this works … if so you can follow us.

One week to go !!

Yes its one week to go until the pain begins. I have been sorting out some bike bits and spares and trying to work out what needs to go in the mobile mechanics car to get through the ride. Its amazing the amount of crap you acquire that requires some charger / plug / power. Roll on the day where we have nuclear phones or whatever the future holds.

So here are the dates…

Sunday 5th of June – Drive to Peterborough and ride the Cambridgeshire Gran Fondo (apparently this is some idiots idea of a “warm up”) The weather does not look too bad which will be a bonus. I am just praying there is NO wind.

Sunday Night – Drive North…. stop somewhere up t’North

Monday – drive to John O’ Groats

Tuesday – Head south

Following days – Eat, Sleep, Ride, Repeat

Finish – Keep going until the front wheel is wet with the sea at Lands End. (actually if it’s wet, I will have ridden off a very high cliff and the blog posts will probably stop)

The route is plotted but I am going to review on each day and be flexible on the actual path. I have been making the list of gels / food  and stuff that will be needed on the long way, the main idea is to top up on route wherever I can. So we ride off into the unknown and attempt one long long way on a bike. I only hope my ageing body can put up with the niggles and aches that are going to be trying to tell me to get off and jack it in every day.

Wish me luck … I am gonna need it !!!

This year I am riding for Revitalise a great charity that provides short breaks and holidays for disabled people and carers. It would be fantastic if any of my readers can make a donation

Check back regularly for further updates on route and live-tracking information.

 

Isle Of Wight Randonnee

Yep its the May bank holiday weekend, and it’s that time of the year for an outing to the Isle of Wight. I got on the early ferry across to Cowes with hundreds of other cyclists and had a very nice “Full English” on the boat. The weather was an interesting one to call, the forecast was good but chilly. I was in two minds on should I get the legs out or not, I decided to risk it and shorts it was. I made the right decision, with not a cloud in the sky the temperature climbed and there were a lot of people over dressed. The ride round was perfect in the sunshine and starting in Cowes meant all the big climbs came about halfway through (rather than at the end – if you start in Yarmouth)

Cycling into East Cowes

Cycling into East Cowes

A fantastic 100km on some of the best tarmac in the south of England (they do look after their roads on the island) If you ever get a chance I really recommend this ride.

IOW Randonnee

JOGLE

Ok – So I have officially gone mad.

I have decided that its time to get out there and crank up some miles and one sure fire way to do this is to start as far away as possible and then cycle back. This means I have no real way of shortening the ride, no bailing out, and if you do decide to shorten the distance on a certain day,  I only have to make it up the next day. RULE 5 !!!

The plan is – Start at the top of Scotland, head south. !! (Well its all downhill right ?)

I will now be doing some route planning, where to stay and what to kit out on the bike. This is unknown territory for me. I know I can ride 100+ miles – BUT can I get up and do it 10 days in a row ? – We shall see.

Next big training rides coming up will be the “Tour de Isle of Wight”  (the Randonee in May) followed by the Cambridgeshire Grand Fondo.(June)

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Velodromes, Strange Bikes and Fear !

Wednesday was an outing to the Olympic Velodrome in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park – London. Woking CC had managed to get a booking, so we get to ride in circles for a few hours. The velodrome is a truly impressive building, even thought it is four years since the Olympics it has not lost any of its 2012 shine. The track is in great condition and the first thing you notice is the gradient of the banking. Now I have been on plenty of “Black Runs” down the side of mountains, but the thought of riding a bike on what seems like a “wall of death” did not seem like a sensible idea. The track bikes are all fixed wheels with “Look” clip in pedals. So you now have the perfect combination for an accident. Feet locked in the pedals, on the equivalent of a “Black Run” to ride on, and a bunch of other people to avoid and make sure you don’t wipe them out. Oh and did I mention – NO BRAKES !!!…. yep you heard that right.

My biggest fear was actually not looking like a prat and falling off trying to get the bike started. Hanging onto a hand rail – pulling the bike into action, while hoping you can get the 1st pedal rotation over before the wobble gets too much to fall off.

We get out onto the track and the coach pushes up the speed slowly, at the same time moving us further and further up the banking. The first couple of laps were pretty scary ! – The lack of brakes (all controlled with the back resistance through the pedals) as well as the fact you can’t free wheel. I of course completely understood this concept, but my ingrained road cycling brain had not quite made the jump yet, it took three very scary moments when my brain was rudely reminded to keep pedaling as my hip was wrenched from its socket.

After fifteen minutes it all started to come together. The faster you go the easier it all becomes. Look ahead and anticipate what the riders ahead are up to and you can ease off the speed before trouble occurs. You always have an option to go up the track if you are gaining too fast and soon we were flinging the bikes up around the curve. We did a few drills and sprints along with some great team riding in groups.

If you like riding a road bike this needs to be on your cycling bucket list of things to do. Just resist the urge to relax the feet – KEEP PEDALING !!!