Another Polocini sportive I can wholeheartedly recommend. Starting in Oldham, once it was clear of bandit country, it offered a pretty and challenging route taking in some great climbs. As per usual there was the incredible Polocini value on display – porridge, coffee, energy bars/gels, energy drink and bottle (both at the start and the feed station), recovery shake and hot meal – all included in the entry price.
And it didn’t rain (but it was BITTERLY cold).
I made somewhat of a mistake at the start, hanging onto (and leading at one point) the fast boys uphill and into the wind, until they finally dropped me after an hour up a long climb.
Steve Robinson from the club hung on for a bit longer until dropping his chain and having a bit of a mechanical. I caught him up and he limped into the feed station. Whilst I filled my face with millionaires shortbread and flapjack one of the support guys tried to fix his mech, which wasn’t taking up the chain slack when dropping to the small ring at the front. Unfortunately he couldn’t fix it and recommended Steve did the short route, so we parted company.
My legs were pretty knackered from the earlier efforts but I made decent time picking off riders until I hit the bottom of Holme Moss and spotted Anthony using the “facilities” A quick chat and we set off up the big climb. I didn’t see him again until the finish.
Speaking of which, just 7 miles from the end, a right turn took us onto Gorsey Brow. The B’Stard. This is a beast of a climb, especially after a hard ride to that point, and I struggled up past a rider who had decided walking was the easier option. At that point it was touch and go who would reach the top first!
Hot food and recovery drink at the end was very welcome – and my legs were starting to seize up when I realised I still had to ride home.
Rick Robson took some great (considering what he had to work with) photos and these were excellent value – see below. Check his work.
Ride Stats : 68.6 miles in 4hrs 44mins @ 14.5mph average. 7266ft climb, average HR 154bpm, 4210kcals used
Strava ride here