On Saturday I went up to Garstang to ride the North Lancashire & District TTA “10” on L101. North Cheshire isn’t affiliated so I took a day’s second claim membership to Bury Clarion to allow me to ride. I wasn’t expecting much from the first ride of the season other than blowing away the cobwebs. I tried using my rollers before to warm up – and they were okay except I couldn’t get enough resistance to get into HR zone 2 so may have to rethink that one. The 10 distance was, unfortunately, shortened to 5.8 miles due to temporary roadworks on the A6.
The new start was just off the A6 and necessitated a virtual U-turn onto the main road, followed fairly quickly by a left turn off it. As soon as I turned off the crosswind hit me, and I was immediately fighting to keep the 82mm rims in a straight line. In fact so worried was I that all thoughts of concentrating on pedal stroke, breathing and putting power down smoothly went out of my head. It was horrible. Another left turned me straight into the wind which at least meant the twitching wheel stopped but my HR zoomed up and my speed slowed. By the end I’d covered the distance in a relatively slow 15:05, or just over 23mph average. My neck was very sore too – from the TT position and hanging on for dear life. Oh well, it’s a long season!
Last years Newport 200 was in very cold conditions, where we were worried about ice and it actually snowed. This year was very mild. But the wind was a pretty strong southerly. I did a couple of miles on the front before I was swamped by the main group led by Calder Clarion. I pretty much sat in the group as they put a huge stint in to the first control at 30 miles. I did the next 30 solo and it was hard work. A decent lunch at the expensive garden centre cafe and I was off solo again with the wind behind. And I flew! Check out these 10 mile splits out and back for a comparison of the effect of the wind
Out – 36:21, 32:42, 36:01, 38:06, 42:14, 40:51
Back – 33:21, 32:10, 32:46, 31:42, 30:47, 33:58
At around 85 miles my temporary rear mudguard, which had been rattling all day, came lose and locked the back wheel. I skidded from 20+ mph to a stop in seconds, but fixed it with a cable-tie. I dread to think what would have happened had it been the front.
No more incidents and I was back at HQ having not been rained on once. Brilliant.
Ride stats : 124 miles in 7hrs 14mins at 17.2mph average. 4734ft ascent, 5126 kcals energy used. Average HR 138bpm