Roubaix 2017

No riding the sportive for me this year, instead a last minute (one star) hotel booking in Villeneuve d’Ascq, and a flexible ferry ticket back to see my favourite race.

Don’t mention the journey on Friday to me, M25 hell bound. But it did mean a late arrival and empty French roads with Verity, my oldest and best friend, for company.

I’d offered to be neutral support for Phil Booth who was riding the 145km mid distance route, with the first section of cobbles being the erratic, bone shuddering Arenberg. An early drive in misty weather with the promise of a beautiful day ahead, saw us with a prime parking spot just off the Arenberg finish. 

The first few fast riders were just starting to trickle past in one’s and twos as we headed down the dolled off path. Metal barriers for quite some way limited access of cyclists to the much friendlier path, as much as keeping the public off the exit.

We wandered down, watching the rope barriers being set up, and kicking the odd bottle off the middle of the cobbles. A few people were walking about, the odd ‘bonjour’ and us two ‘allez’ing the riders on. A very French ‘Yes. It’s rock and roll’ in reply (pronounced Yace. Eets rack and wrol) had us in giggles for a while. 

I warned Verity a bridge would eventually appear – although neither I or Phil had even noticed it last year when we rode it – but the fog kept it hidden until the last minute.

Punctures and dropped chains were order of the day if you didn’t get through unscathed, although I failed to see the guy fall off his bike in the plough behind me as we finally saw the bridge.

I honestly couldn’t believe how high and out of place it looked in the spring greenery of the surrounding forest. A 15 strong mountain bike peleton was strangely quiet as the shock absorbers did their job over the rough, jilted cobbles. 

A total mix of bikes, it really makes the mind boggle. From full suss, brand new mountain bikes (Scott the leading brand by a mile) to road bikes who’s glory days had been 15 years ago. Most popular road bikes were all types of Specialized. Several Venge Vias and even a couple of candy coloured Cruxs. Castelli and Rapha the unbranded kit of choice, and the huge variety of club colours and makes. 

We removed all the bottles dropped on the ancient cobbles that we saw, and collected the spare tubes and tools that we found – giving the tubes to those who had punctured.

Phil managed to spot my very unsubtle gilet, and waited for us at the end.

Arenberg was very very dry this year, the only damp from shattered and split bottles. 

We saw Phil safely on his was before heading to my favourite section of pavé, the ever degrading Carrefour d’Larbe. Reckoned this year to be worse than Arenberg.

A long wait on the side of the pavé in the sun, a lot of encouragement from us both to the riders both flying and weary. The wait was starting to get worrying, so much so that a song was made up…

‘We’re Really Quite Worried About Phil.’

A WhatsApp let us know that all but one of his chainring bolts had come out, and the mechanics had done a bodge job worthy of GCN hacks. One other bolt and cable ties held it together

I offered my Scott Addict, sat redundant in the car, and even got it out to be ready.

A random meeting with Jon Dibben’s mum, massively proud of her son and trying to find a better place to park the campervan they had took up some time, until finally a white, green and red jersey snagged my attention.

A dusty dry day was taking its toll, and Phil decided to finish on the patched up Felt after he’d got himself together.

L’enfer du Nord

Sunday saw a car pool and a trip to Compiègne to see the start from the Medway Veloians cafe of choice. A table in the sun, coffee and banter. The colourful parrot like flock of the peleton as they passed

Then it was off to Saint Python for the next bit. Chasing the race for the love of it.

Fair play to the Astana bus rocking the Tom Boonen mask in the front window as we drove past!

The heat was cranking up as we made our  way into the village and out on to the cobbles. A high bank and narrow verge granted excellent views, as I chose to stay low for a photo or two.

The arrival of motorbikes and the distant helicopter heralded the arrival of the race. Dust driven up in clouds that a sandstorm would be proud of as the vehicles sped onto the cobbles.

The race was already breaking up. Riders barely glimpsed amid the cars. Terpstra abandoned. Punctures and team cars too far away.

Then it was a trudge up the field and back into the car. Air con a luxury the peleton could wish for. A long drive to Cysoing and a lucky parking spot. Twitter refreshed and the race really starting. Crashes reported, breakaway and a peleton thinning by the minute. Mostly French around us, radios and flags abundant as the temperature rose. A trek up section 7, memories of timed sections surfacing from last year as we found a place to stand. 

Rodonia sang again as I downed the last of the Orangina. Vehicles approaching, Daniel Oss still in front, yellow dust clouds gathering like the storm of the chase behind. Grim, dirty, silent, streaks of brown marring the rainbow hued men as they hurtle past. 

A race split to pieces by those errant blocks of stone, seemingly thrown together by a joker. A dry, hot day ridden at ridiculous speeds that we can only dream of. The main pack is gone. But every couple of minutes another whistle screeches, the crowds roar and part and another one or two or three come streaming through. Faces are strained, there’s not another lot left, and yet still more than 25km to go. The Carrefour awaits not far ahead, and yet they still don’t stop. A ten minute gap, the gendarmerie still vigilant for riders alone. 

Outgunned, unlucky, not their day, as we wait in the sun, envious of the hard men of Roubaix flashing through as Twitter once more is refreshed as they near the end. 

A van towing a flatbed loaded with bikes gives pause for thought. Is that Rowes bike? 

A shock as the three slow and become five, can Stuyven sprint? No. The day is for GvA, a whoop from me and as I look up the road is reopened. But not all riders are through? Of 199 starters, it feels like maybe 40 have gone through. 

Suddenly it’s all done for another year… 

#keepsmiling 

Paris Roubaix Challenge

You all know how much I’ve been looking forward to the Paris Roubaix Challenge Trying to not get too excited leading up to it. Well. It was absolutely bone judderingly fantastic.

5:36:19 and 75.46 miles.
Max speed 30.71mph (must have been us entering Arenberg!)
Average 13.6mph (no auto pause).

Equipment:
Colnago World Cup 2015 on Continental Grand Prix 28mm tyres (90psi). Double wrapped bar tape – Bontrager Gel Cork over Colnago.
Castelli Nanoflex Bibshorts, Castelli Nanoflex legwarmers, merino socks. Orange Giro mtb/cx shoes.
Castelli diluvio overshoes.
Sportful long sleeved 2nd skin baselayer.
Borrowed red spring jacket.
Bioracer Medway Velo jersey.
Ana Nichoola winter gloves from 3 years ago.

Having two support cars made a hell of a lot of difference – and it seemed to be a common factor with a lot of people, having back up by the side of the road. After dropping the others off at the start in Busigny, we made out way to the first rendezvous point – the end of the timed section at Saint Python. It was chilly, but clear with barely a cloud in the sky. Plenty of wet grass to walk through as we walked a short distance down the cobbles to wait for the others. Sparkle’s cowbells were a great idea, even with Tom managing to drop the clapper.
It’s a proven point however that laser eye surgery isn’t always great as Tom managed to confuse a 6 ft plus guy with rather wide shoulders riding toward us with Rob.
Soon however Rob did appear, jabbing his hand at the guy in front and gesticulating wildly.

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But as he didn’t appear to have a mechanical or be in serious pain, just a bit more loopy than usual, we let him carry on and waited for the others

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They regrouped at the end of the cobbles where Rob proceeded to explain his gestures were not part of some strange cobbled madness. The guy he was pointing at was Juan Antonio Flecha. Yes that Flecha.

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They all set off again, with Neil (@HooRoubaix) having had a puncture a slight bit behind.

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Then onto the first feed station. Which is where I started from. Rob, Sean and Steve were the first to appear and after I quick chat, I set off in front of them. I’d got quite chilly and whilst I desperately needed to warm up, I wasn’t going to go on a burn out mission in the first few miles.
That first section of pavé – no. 21 – Quérénaing à Maing warmed me up considerably. There wasn’t a huge amount of people going onto it at the same time as me, so I was able to hold my line on the crown and ramp up the speed a bit. I’d forgotten quite how rattly everything is, but quickly remembered hands on top of the bars, hold them very loosely and power forward. Ironically it’s not unlike cx – I find myself riding harder and faster over the cobbles than I do on the smooth tarmac in between. In my head it’s SPRINT sprint SPRINT sprint SPRINT. Because that is exactly how it feels.
I heard Rob’s voice next to me as I rode toward pavé n°20 – Maing à Monchaux-sur-Ecaillon, and I gestured Steve to go ahead just before we hit it. I know they are faster then me, and they gradually rode away for me. Knowing Phil and Neil were still behind me was quite heartening.
Heading up the tarmac after a couple of sections was great. Legs had started warming up and I’d got warmer.
I can’t remember why, but I was looking down rather than up as I left Demain. A quick glance up showed flashing lights and a metal level crossing barrier/pole already lowering in front of me. You wouldn’t think it but I was going far too fast to stop, so grabbing the brakes I manged to chest it pretty hard… and not fall off. A rider coming up behind me was the only person to see it, and as he pulled up alongside he was chuckling away. A *beep beep beep* heralded the arrival of our minibus and trailer behind. I think I turned around and waved, although I’m not too sure!

Phil and Neil both managed to catch me up before the next cobbled sector n°19 – Haveluy à Wallers. We rattled over it, in the middle as there wasn’t much room on the sides, and as we came out the other end, Phil informed me the next section was n°18 – Trouée d’Arenberg as he caught sight of the iconic coal mine that marks the first sight of the Trench. Turning into the bit of tarmac leading up to it was frankly unreal, crowds already gathered some behind barrirs, some in front, Belgians, French, British just starting to have a party that lasts all weekend.

As Phil says – ‘Nothing happens before Arenberg.’
I’m pretty sure my words were ‘Jesus Christ here we go!’ and then ‘let’s hit this hard at speed.’
As we sped onto the first few cobbles ‘oh hell’ went through my head as we attempted to ride them hard and fast. Nothing quite prepares for the complete irregularities and huge gaps, let alone the fact that it was wet and muddy. All sectors (apart from Troisville) had been dry so far. A glance at the old Garmin showed 23mph as we entered the dank forbidding forest.
Then the sounds you dread to hear. That distinct sound of a bike, then another going down, lycra going off route in front as riders are unable to hold their original line. I could see one down, and another, a hold up on the section where you dread to stop. I can honestly say I did not touch my brakes, but had to stop pedalling as there was only a narrow space on the left to squeeze through. I’d lost the speed I needed then, and ended up juddering to a stop, I managed to get going again, and get back over, but with people going down all around, and no chance of getting back up to speed, we ended up going up the right hand side. Jumping back on a bit further up, we managed to ride the rest of it. Despite more and more riders going down all around me, both Phil and I managed to stay upright.
I saw Sparkle and Lee at the end, and we managed to pull in by Tom. I failed totally to open an energy bar with teeth or gloves, and Tom took pity on me opening it for me.

I remember setting off again, knowing Phil was forced to ride a bit slower as I’d just started to have a bit of energy lag. And I certainly remember riding sector no 16 Hornaing à Wandignies (4 star rating 3.7km), no 15 – Warlaing à Brillon (3 star, 2.4km) and n°14 – Tilloy à Sars-et-Rosières (4 star, 2.4km) as they were one after the other in fairly quick succession, and certainly not easy to ride!

A quick stop at the feed station. Honestly oranges have never tasted so good! A visit with the support team around the corner to pick up some more bars and gels. And off again.

We ended up riding a sector, slowing/stopping the other end (mostly for me!) and waiting for each other, trying to figure out without looking at the top tube sticker which sector was next, and how long it was and how many stars it was rated. The answer was… no idea… and it didn’t matter. Over and over again, I knew (and told Phil repeatedly) that we would be fine when we got to sector 5 – because I knew it from last year.

I’d just ride the cobbles (or the side of the sector if available!!) as hard as I could – churning the best gear I could. Which was fine until you really are tired, and just don’t quite have enough energy to get past the slightly slower rider in front without blowing up. Every bit of road into the headwind was slowly draining me, and the last feed station was more than welcome. More oranges, bananas, orange energy drink, and off again.

I’ve no idea how much crap we talked, as the energy levels slowly burnt down, but it was a lot. Idle thoughts become voiced questions as you get more tired. Mentally I loved every second of it, although finally seeing the entry to sector 5 – Camphin-en-Pévèle (4 star, 1.8km) was a hell of a relief, then seeing both James and Helen Standen picked the mood up a bit more. I think I knew at this point that we would make it. The Carrefour de l’Arbre (5 star, 2.1km) was not too bad, until we turned the corner into that sapping headwind. Phil dropped me here as I struggled along first the right then the left, then just pushing along and trying to blank it out of my mind as a few cars came past rather closely! Eventually I reached the end, and pulled to a stop by Phil, using one of his gels as I was out.

I can’t pretend the last two sectors were easy  – although we rode Gruson on the gravel at the side. Well until I got nearer to the end, and an ‘I WILL do this’ filters into my brain, and I get back on the cobbles. Same for sector 2 – which I still profess to personally dislike. This time it was easier, riding proper lines through and off the corners, and hammering the last section right down the middle.

The last bit we knew was all tarmac, so the sheer relief as I think we laughed was huge. Well until we got to 5km to go where they had decided to route us over a few meters of new cobbles – that was just like… what? Why would they do that!??! How? Just… disbelief doesn’t cover it!

We ended up on the banking in the velodrome, but finished safely. I still can’t get over doing it! No punctures or mechanicals for the entire group! A celebratory drink after nearly had me on my knees. Dehydrated, drained and very very tired..

I can’t thank Medway Velo enough. Especially Rob Kennison for talking me into it, Phil Booth for riding with me and looking after me without complaint. Also the drivers – Anthony and Lee, soigneurs Sparkle & Tom Kennison, and the other riders; Sean, Steve, Neil and Ian. A great group that got on really well, especially when chasing the race the next day, and so many laughs on the way home – as the minibus massive managed to catch one ferry, and the car crew got stuck at passport control! Guys, you were absolute diamonds, and I’m proud to have been part of it!

Thanks also to Continental Tyres – for the Grand Prix GT 28’s. Never had a moment of doubt with grip on the damp sections being so important. They rolled through everything and barely looked used! So impressed, definitely a go to for next time (which might well be June!)

#keepsmiling

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Strong enough? Or a point to prove?

Looks like I’m heading back to the cobbles of Paris – Roubaix again (My Paris Roubaix.) this year, this time with the lovely people at Medway Velo.
I’m highly likely to be riding the Colnago – yep, my cx bike, hopefully with borrowed wheels (TBC).
You wonder why I want to this? Because, despite my emotional outbursts, I want to prove to myself I’m strong enough to do this. Being surrounded by doubters has left me with a right ‘fuck you can do’ attitude, you don’t think I can? I’ll prove to you, I’m stronger than you ever thought I was.
And. I love those cobbles. It’s given me something to aim at…

So thanks to Phil Booth and Rob Kennison. Looking forward to joining the madness!

What’s your advice? Spare tyres? Chamois cream? Super cool bar tape? (Don’t even think about mentioning a road bike, I don’t have one) Nutrition to carry? wpid-20150412_114759.jpgwpid-20150412_113155.jpgwpid-20150412_115839.jpgwpid-img_20150412_142840.jpg

#excitedmuch #keepsmiling

Cobbles on a Sunday

Paris Roubaix.
The Hell of the North.
L’enfer Du Nord.

The race has many names, and unsurprisingly many characters – both riders and cobbled sectors alike. And the Belgians. I truly think the Belgians make this French race the race that I saw today.

Ok, we know riders animate the race, especially the breakaways. And it was cracking to see Adam *Super Shiny Shoes* Blythe up there for such a long way today.
We’ve also see Tom Boonen stay away in this race over an incredible distance (sadly not taking part today).

But. The Belgians. Seriously just awesome.  They give the build up something a lot of races lack. Is it their own panache? Or gumption? Or is it the sheer fact they are here to have an amazing time, and aren’t afraid to let you know it.

I had a double puncture in Chéreng today (huge thanks to Ron who actually showed me how to fix them quickly and easily!!). But after that we headed over the cobbles of Sector 3 – surpringly they felt a lot easier to ride today! Then straight for Carrefour de l’arbre. You know. The 5* sector of pavé I’ve been banging on about on twitter the last two days. I asked Ron if he (speedy gonzalez compared to me) would mind me going in front. Not a problem.
And yes. I loved every knackering bone shaking second of it. Even managing to laugh at the camera that filmed me motoring around one of the corners (and zoomed in on my trainers with a muttered ‘Merde!’) < Did I spell that right?!

We rode up to sector 5, which by comparison looked smooth as a babies bottom (not that I've ever seen one, but you know what I mean!). Then doubled back to ride 4 again. This time getting heckled by 2 lots of friendly Belgians – and damn doesn't it make you feel good!!

Only an hour later did I realise my arms ached. And yes @ClaireR_81 I had one miniscule blister!!

We were lucky they had a big screen at the end of Carrefour de l'arbre. And settled in there to watch the gruelling race. Gutting to see riders going down like dominoes. And most of all (as he's my fellow countryman!) poor Geraint Thomas. 2 punctures and a nasty crash that saw him eventually get dropped.

It was obvious that the cross winds, attacks and possibly #TrainGate (was the train driver a former Shimano employee!?!) had blown the race apart way before the severely fractured peleton arrived on our section of dusty cobbles.

But it was still a race in progress as they passed us, seeing the grit of teeth covered in a brown film as the riders tried desperately to stay off the worst cobbles. Ironically the cleanest rider I saw appeared to be Luke Rowe!

They were past in dribs and drabs, and I was really pleased to see Shane Archbold  (@Theflyingmullet) had disentangled himself from an overly long embrace with the cobbles, that had left blood running down his nose.

Then they were gone. Broom wagon finally appeared. We said goodbye to Jon Baines  (lovely to see you hun!) and headed back through the mad crowds to the hotel.
Luckily I managed to draft behind a car going over sector 3, before we blasted past it on the road the other side. Whilst trying to weave through people all over the road. Plenty of 'Excusé Moi' 🙂 Then we went past two groups of mad drunk Belgians (I'm not sure if they heckled me or propositioned me!!!)

The easiest way back was over sector 2. Which was blessedly empty apart from one group who cheered us as we went through. Plenty of 'Hup hup.. oooo… hup…. ooooo…. hup hup…. yeah!!!'
(Yes that was me sliding around the potholes on the cobbles!)
A few passing words with the Hot Chilli lot, and that was us done!

It's been quite simply, epically brilliant. Why do cobbles have a something that actually secretly or pubically *make* you want to ride them again? I loved every second. Even on my poor Trek Lexa who really isn't built for that.

Oh and I didn't drop my chain once!

#keepsmiling

My Paris Roubaix.

Obviously I’m not doing the sportive like @editorsfoot and @JCoxy1. But I have come over to France to watch the iconic race.

The idea was first floated around in January, but the only person that seemed keen was Ron Southern.
So a plan was formed: he’d bring his van and we would take the bikes through the Euro Tunnel.
I duly found a hotel in Hem. Little did I realise until last week that it’s pretty much on the race route!

Finally the 11th April dawns, after I’ve seen all the statuses/tweets from the others off to do the sportive yesterday, I’m finally ready to go. And it duly heaves down with rain all day until just after we arrive at Hem. Where we see most of the Corley Cycles group ride up to the roundabout next to the hotel.
A quick trip out for food, and I spot Decathlon where I then ‘splash out’ on a pair of black B’Twin legwarmers after seeing the forecast is a bit chilly in the morning, and a black Elite carbon bottle cage (it was cheap!!!).

Back at the hotel we decide on a quick outing on the bikes as it’s dried up and the sun is out. I faff wondering what to wear – finally settling on my Garmin kit – jersey and bibs. I tried the legwarmers on and @tomstaniford will be pleased to know they fit!!

I had a quick mosey at where to go on Google Maps and decided we should be within reach of Section 4. So off we headed toward Forest-sur-Marque on the D952. The off onto the Rue de Tressin towards Tressin, through there and out to Chéreng. A decision to go south to Gruson was rewarded by a crossroad of very smooth topped lumpy cobbles and the ubiquitous Belgian fans in campers. A quick check of the map or two and we we suddenly right in front of Section 3 (labelled Pavé de l’Arbre on the map next to Gruson).
A pair of English guys on their bikes offered to take our photo (supremely cheesy grins!!) as we posed LOL!!
Then we decided to ride it. You know. Just to see how far it went. And to see if we could get to Section 4. The 5* rated pavé that’s described as worse than Arenberg this year.

Bearing in mind this is the very first time I’ve ridden on proper cobbles…

We set off, riding 2 upsides bouncing around a bit before Ron got ahead, telling me to ride on the crown of the road. I duly followed him and this is all I can describe:

Jouncing around with no let up, everything wobbling and vibrating, handlebars like 12 racehorses pulling in every direction at once. The feeling that you MUST NOT let go. You MUST NOT stop. Shades bouncing around so much you cannot actually see, the unrelenting rattling banging of my poor aliminum bike with the chain bouncing up and down like it’s demon possessed. The thought of ‘Maybe I should’ve worn gloves,’ followed by the fact that I *AM* wearing gloves. The manic grin and the giggle as two walkers stop to look. It’s quite frankly amazing and as much as I want it to stop. To long for smooth roads. I know nothing will ever quite beat this. Then 2 little turns and I’m off the cobbles with the stupidest smile ever on my face. Feeling sky high. And ridiculously unfit!

Ron and the two that took our cheesy picture laugh at me and ask if I’m ok. Of course!!

Then we ride it back again. The way the sportive rode it today. The way the race will go tomorrow. And once again, it’s epic beyond imagination

THIS IS WHY I RIDE MY BIKE.

We mutually agree to ride the signposted route back to the hotel, knowing we hit sector 2 somewhere along the line.

Then we do and Ron hares off. I keep my own pace, quickly realising this section is NOTHING like the easy smooth bobbling of Sector 3. This is rough. And potholed. And all I want to do is let go of the bars, or change a gear or get out of the saddle or something. Something to stop the bone racking crashing up and down. So I pull onto the side and ride in the dust. Hating every second of it. So back to the cobbles I go. Trying to steer around the holes and craters that line the way with these so called rocks that some errant joker calls cobbles. There’s nothing to hold them together and wheels attempt escape down every crack and cranny to only find brief purchase on dusty field grit before they spin ever onward in spasmodic jerks as I  attempt to keep my bike in a straight line. There is no ‘crown’ of the road on this section. No slightly raised, marginally smoother part. This is rough. I pull over and take a quick photo, which unwittingly turns out to be rather good. Then I find myself laughing. I’m truly enjoying this. I pedal onwards. Trainers slipping, chain vainly attempting to get itself off and throw me in a muddy ditch. Finally I think I see Ron. Only I’m not sure because I just can’t see straight. I realise he’s got a camera. But I’m smiling anyway. Because this is good. Because this is why I ride my bike…

#keepsmiling

Grand National and Paris Roubaix

I got to attend the Grand National meeting at Aintree for the first time, not with a horse that was running, but with the oldest surviving winner. Rough Quest won back in 1996 with Mick Fitzgerald on board, and the is now an elderly 27 years old.

It was something special to lead the old boy around, and what a gent he is. Lots of people saying how happy they were to see him, and calling out ‘Thank you for bringing him!’

As he won back in 1996, we got to lead both the parade in the paddock and the parade down the course. It was just simply amazing!

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We were stabled next to Lord Gyllene with Red Marauder on the far side

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The above photo shows (from left) Rough Quest, Lord Gyllene, Red Marauder.

I also met Bindaree:

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and Mon Mome

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As well as Hedgehunter and Amberleigh House (unfortunately I didn’t get pictures of them!)

It really was an honour to lead Rough Quest around!

Sunday.
As it was my weekend off I actually had a bit of a lie in, getting up about 8. Then decided to attempt getting my computer to work so I could watch some of Paris Roubaix. In 20 mins I had it all set up, but couldn’t find my Wifi dongle. 2 hours later I found it underneath my hairdryer…

I have to say I didn’t see all of it! Although I thought Stannard and Eisel were going well, Fabians nonchalent poker game was pretty epic to watch! I feel very sorry for Stybar though, who I thought showed the most Panache of the race.
Still it was an epic circuit in the old velodrome, an ending that I guess will be replayed for a long time!

Then it was time to get out on my bike, the same block as I did the other day (see previous blog post).
So 12.55 miles in 53.58. Average speed 13.97mph. Max 38.11mph. Calories 728.
I am rather impressed with myself for that! Especially with knocking over a minute of my last ride!

That’s all for now!

I don’t ‘do’ hangovers…

I didn’t blog yesterday, as only cycled down the hill and back (not even worth a mention really) but I still managed to get out on the bike – 30 days of biking! Alright it was quite frankly pathetic, oh well!

I haven’t gone out yet today, as decided to have a couple of drinks last night, and in all honesty I was too tired! I have never had a hangover from drinking, well at least not any headaches, but I didn’t think it would be a good idea to go out on the bike if I was still a bit tipsy!

I knew the track worlds were on in Australia so I had great fun watching that, wow Chris Hoy, but even more WOW Anna Mears! Both were amazing! By that point I was switching between Eurosport and Eurosport HD but gave up and watched my favourite race – Paris Roubaix on HD.
The cobbles, the crashes, punctures, mechanicals makes for the most spectacular race I’ve ever watched, and following the teams on Twitter makes it even more fascinating. Actually watching my timeline on Twitter explode is pretty cool too! Trying to tweet about the race, and watch it and read what other people are saying gets a bit confusing sometimes! But I really enjoy it anyway!
Don’t ask me why I tweet names, I really have no idea!
Boooooonen
Pipo (spelt in various ways)
I would be a pain at a footy match I’m sure!

But today, Tom Boonen was FANTASTIC, I was watching it praying they would catch him, and hoping that he could do it alone. I couldn’t make my mind up!
It’s almost a pity it didn’t rain… It’s a damn shame Cancellara was injured…. but still it was fabulous viewing of a brilliant race.

If my chain rattled that much, I’m sure it’d be off in seconds!

So, a short ride on the bike planned – and I might even blog a second post later!

Off to twatter away now 😉
Have fun…..