Sunday, 20 July 2014

C&DCYCLES CC Sunday ride: great ride, superbly led by Andy 'Mountain Goat,' Brown

On the way out of K town

Sundays are the clubs longer more challenging rides and as such this ride completely fitted the bill. Planned and led by Andy Brown we took in parts of Rutland we can't get to on a 30 miler and boy was it tough. Over 3000ft of climbing in 50 miles made this route worthy of a sportive. It was a route suited to Andy B as C&DCYCLES CC resident mountain goat. Less so the downhill specialists like me or Jonesy but due to the law 'what goes up must come down!' There was plenty to keep us interested.

The group comprised of Andy, Rob (with the beard,) Tony, Justin, Steve, Neil, Martin and me. Again we worked well together, lots of communication (although people are still pointing away from not towards obstacles,) and rule 1 was firmly observed.

Spanhoe war memorial

Explanatory sign

One of the points of interest was the war memorial at Spanhoe. It was also one of those catchup points after a series of hills. Plenty of other groups out today and lots to lust after as a group with Bianchi, Pinarello and Colnago's whipped past with that unique sound of expensive carbon. Still, no Boardman's or Forme's the classless buffoons!

The boys


Welland Valley Viaduct

After another series of ups and downs we went under the viaduct, quite an impressive feature and just when I thought we'd have a few flat miles BOOM we were up a monster out of Seaton. At the top was the very inviting looking George and Dragon pub plus big Steve, who never switched out of big ring like the machine he is, found somewhere nice to sit down.

My goodness I could murder a pint

Look even Steve needed a sit down

We headed towards Uppingham up more hills. Were we in the Alps? Steve needed to stop at the garage aptly it was a jet because in addition to those legs of steel he was enjoying curry powered jet propulsion.

Steve was jet powered by last nights vindaloo

Not a shop we need

Out of Uppingham the view over the Welland valley was stunning at times. I stopped to take this snap shortly before a hairy experience! As I set off down the hill of a resurfaced road I encountered a tractor which took up the width of the road. Evasive action required, a bit of a skid plus some off road saved the day. The tractor carried on apparently undisturbed.

Amazing view

Suits you sir!

Steve, whose crown as the Prince of Profanity unearthed a gem. Hare pie anyone? Apparently that's popular at this farm! A few more hills and someone noticed my rear tyre. I'm not sure if the incident with the tractor caused the big gash or not I have to say this is par for the course for my 'upgraded' contis. I've never had this issue with gators. Lord Vader aka Andy at C&DCYCLES has already told me not to worry the shop will replace the tyre and then take it up with the company. Many thanks for this. Once again we are spoiled by excellent service.

Gash horror!

I think we killed Jonesy

Was that the end of the hills? No of course not! I was a bit tentative for the last few miles because I felt the rear tyre was a bit of a risk. The icing on the cake as far as our overspun legs were concerned were the hills through Dingley, onto to Braybrooke, up to the Desborough Road and then Thorpe Malsor rather than the QOM hill into Harrington. They say a change is as good as a rest. Not for most of us. We were knackered. Even Andy looked out of breath as we joined Harrington Road. I left the lads at Rothwell and hope they survived Bunker Hill ok. I'd done it already getting to the shop and there's no way I was doing that beast again.

What a ride! Thanks Andy. That was a splendid route and you performed leader duties perfectly. I'm looking forward to your next ride but for now I really need a sit down!

Happy pedalling

Ps Steve I can't find 'go like the clappers' on you tube!

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