After the endeavours of the summer there has been something of an autumn lull in the cycling activities and it occurs to me that this is in no small part down to a lack of goals. A lack of goals and a wife and family that feel that it’s their turn for some focus and attention and to be fair, they’re probably justified!
But I did manage to join the SW Rouleurs for the quarterly club ride. It was a club ride with the SW Rouleurs way back in January that introduced me to road riding and it’s funny to look back at how far things have come in the last 9 months. Back in January I turned up on my mountain bike (albeit with skinny road tyres) to be met by a pack of whippets dressed in lycra and astride the latest bit of shimano shod carbon. If you ever wanted to see the MTB/ Roadie divide for yourself then this was surely it. It was all cargo shorts, suspension and backpack on the one hand and leg warmers, bidons and gamins on the other. I set a new pb distance of 60 miles that day and bonked in the process of trying to keep up. Fast forward 9 months and there I was on my shimano shod bit of carbon in club lycra.
9 of us made the journey in the end in perfect early autumn weather. Cold at the start (6 degrees as I walked out of the door with all of 4 hours sleep under my belt) but warming up quickly as the early fog burnt off. We covered about 100 miles all told, riding out through Surrey and Hampshire with just a cake stop in the sunshine at Odiham before taking the train back from Weybridge. The pace was relaxed (for the most part – although not relaxed enough to show you any pictures) and the company was warm like the weather as we rode through quiet villages and along the edge of the South Downs. All in all, it was one of those days that you think of when someone asks you why you like cycling.
Stats etc all here.