Paying the price, but rewarding

Photo: I’ve been volunteering to help ICC members become Ride Leaders. RK (in the distance) is now an excellent Leader but she thrashes me up the hills.

Back on the bike after a 10 day break. The combination of Son of the Beast from the East and a birthday trip for my wife Jan to Granada kept me out of the saddle. A week with friends is great for the funny bone but not so great for the liver. Having a drink over lunch and dinner every day was bound to take it’s toll. It did.

Saturday’s ride was 108km and 1,700m of climbing in the Surrey hills. I really did feel it on the climbs. Nevertheless, it was a stunning route taking us through beautiful villages and wonderful views. At one point we just missed a startled pheasant. It escaped by flying right in front of us along the road. I don’t think it realised just how fast we were travelling as it started to get tired and got lower and lower. It came in to land about 50m ahead of us, putting itself back in the same position it was 400m earlier. This time it decided to jump into the verge to avoid us. Smart move.

Sunday’s ride was 127km from London to Oxford. I paid the price once again for over indulgence and the effort to keep up with the riders on Saturday. It was a great ride though. I ended up leading one group, whilst RK led the other. I asked my group if they fancied having a go at Chain Gang and Paceline. They said yes and we did both at various times. As Ride Leader I have to assess the riders and the conditions before organising such drills. They did it really well. The last 10km in Paceline was really fast and safe. Great riding from these guys:


When we arrived at Oxford we stopped at the excellent Espresso Peleton cafe. A while later the following group arrived. RK got a round of applause from her group for leading them. I felt really proud. Well done RK.


Year to date

3,245km / 32 rides / 101.4km average per ride

28,740m elevation gain (3.2 Everests)

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