Sunday, 23 May 2010

North Cheshire Clarion club run 23 May 2010

A great start to the weekend with temperatures hovering around 24-25 'C on Saturday and Sunday's forecast was for much of the same - really good stuff so dressed in just short sleeve shirts and bib-tights, proper summer stuff (at last) 11 NCC members and a guest set off from Stretton in an anti-clockwise loop through Frodsham, Kelsall, Willington, Delamere and Acton Bridge.

It was a slow 15 mph group start as opposed to the normal fast start and I was pretty thankful for that. With Frodsham and it's inclines coming so early into the ride I usually travelling at the speed we normally ride at get a stitch either riding up Fluin lane or the slight hill coming out the other side of Frodsham, but today with the slow speed start I escaped the stitch however I talk (type) too soon, I may have escaped that stitch but I was soon to be stitched up by a stitch of my own making.

Travelling up what we have named Alvanley hill which is a no name hill in the Alvanley area (obviously duh) I was talking to Andy as we climbed and at the same time trying to adjust my inline barrel adjuster to my rear derailleur - trying to adjust the noise out of my gear train when it looks like I adjusted it too far resulting in the chain coming off between my spokes and cassette calling for a hasty unclip before I fell sideways. A minute later after I had managed to unwedge my chain and clean my hands on a handy Doc leaf or two, I was back in action storming up the rest of the hill to rejoin the waiting group - it's suprising what a quick rest can do for your legs. Now normally I find this hill fairly taxing but today perhaps because I was talking with Andy, I didn't really notice it that much but I was disappointed that my breakdown on the steeper part fifty yards from the top robbed me of an occasion to assess any improved climbing ability on this particular hill, the first hill to make me walk a long time ago. I did however feel that I had certainly improved on my previous climbs up this hill - up to the point of my mechanical that is...

The next hill was a short sharp 13% hill a few miles on from Alvanley and as we approached I stormed from the back of the group shouting 'HILL, HILL, THERES A HILL COMING UP!!!' must have sounded a right nutter but anyway there was a hill coming up and I was going for it and doing quite well until half way up when I was passed by 'Nitrous Oxide' Dave and a young lad whose name escapes me atm, it was fun and you've got to have a go haven't you...

Next target is the Elvis transport cafe on the A54 and what a dicey experience that was trying to turn right out of a side road across a busy 'A' road and then a few hundred yards further on on the A54 turn right across cars bombing along at 60 mph in each direction to get to the cafe...

After Elvis and it's limited supply of foodstuff was another run up the A54 but for some reason the traffic was thankfully not as heavy as we did another right hand turn across the traffic. We are now off the busy A road as we head down through Kelsall and Willington and then came a left up a lane that took us up past Summertrees - a proper cafe with proper cake unlike Elvis's - and then onto The Yeld. During this part of the ride we rode a few hilly drags, nothing too steep and I found them not hard at all, just as long as I didn't ride them too fast, just riding at my normal steady plodding pace.

The Sprint

What sprint !?! I missed it. After some discussion on the clubs forum we decided that hill crests and 30 mph signs are what we should be sprinting for but that's only good if you are good at sprinting up hills which I'm not and know where the 30 signs are located. Approaching the end of the ride I was on the front (had to get that bit in) when Dave zooms past followed by Andy, Pablo and the young person whose name I cannot recall - I missed it, they were sprinting for a 30 sign around a bend and it all happened so quick that there was no time for any sort of reply from me - bah humbug!!!

I will win a sprint one of these days but I have a hunch that there is a cunning behind the scenes conspiracy to stop me from winning any of the sprints or perhaps it's simply because I'm just so slow - they will be calling me Captain Slow soon.... So come on guys, just one, just one for me plz pretty plz..........

My Stats
44.5 miles, 3 hrs 2min, Avg Speed 14.2 mph, 2326 ft climbing (Bikehike)

1 comment:

  1. I think the weather this weekend was actually too hot. I did a 24hr race and by mid-day over half the field had quit.