Monday, 23 February 2009

Oh yes

Well, on arriving in Ju Belloc in the Gers Dept with P&K for the cyclo-sportive yesterday, I promptly wondered what on earth I was doing there! The car park was full of fit, skinny, serious-looking lycra-clad blokes putting together their precious and very very expensive full carbon racing stallions. Boy, did I feel out of place with my cheepy cheepo little filly. However, after bluntly reminding myself that I was there for a laugh and to simply get round the 70+km course, I started to relax and I commenced the 'race' at my own pace, content at least not to be right at the back of the field.

Somebody who shall remain nameless had assured me the course was 'flat'. Does this profile look flat to you?! It actually worked out (according to my Garmin) at 665m of ascent!But it went well, my bike was working well and my legs were feeling strong. I rode the majority of the race on my own, just occasionally catching up with a small group of riders, overtaking them and then concentrating my efforts on reeling in the next person in my sights. I think I probably overtook a dozen people in all. The weather was perfect, the course varied and I was chuffed to bits to complete the 77.5kms in a very respectable 2 hrs 59 mins, reaching a max speed of 60kph. I discovered later that I was the 2nd lady home in my age category .... the fact that there were only the 2 of us in our age group somehow seems irrelevant! I had had a grand day out and my trophy is on the mantlepiece.
Pat and Kev had a tougher time on the 110km circuit with Kev somehow missing the turn off for the additional loop which was just 5kms from the end of the 70+km route. Being the trooper that he is, he turned round at the finish, retraced his steps and then picked up the signs for the additional 40km which he eventually completed!

We stayed with their friends Jane and Pete in the area last night and enjoyed a hearty chilli, followed by plum crumble, washed down with some 'muscle relaxant' red wine. It had been an all round excellent outing and I will not be approaching future cyclosportives with the same fear and trepidation as I did my first!

No comments: