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A club social night has been arranged.
Saturday 30th June
The Byre EK
7.30pm for meal and drinks
9pm for drinks
Hope to see as many people there as possible.
After a couple of months of swanning around, the realisation that we weren’t fit enough, and then three weeks of flat out training, the day of the Etape Caledonia 2012 dawned.
Having spent the week obsessively checking the weather, we were fully kitted up in waterproofs and thermals with a generous supply of Kinder Buenos our energy product of choice, sport beans and the secret weapon, caffeine shots. Pauline in charge of training, technical and kit, and Virginia in charge of nutrition and race strategy.
The first hitch hit before we even got over the start line, and managed to get herded into separate pens and had to set off in different groups! But after a few minutes wait we were back on the road again.
The first section was undulating but with lots of trees so not too badly affected by wind. The view up Loch Tay from Queen’s view was spectacular. Our agreed strategy was to pick our victims, finding “a wheel” to follow where we could. We soon realised that the ideal was two big guys riding two abreast so we could conserve energy and chat at the same time.
We might not have performed to our best abilities as the Sprint section saw us stuffing down first of the Kinder Buenos- when the going gets tough the tough turn to chocolate, watching with amusement as a guy with a very unflattering skin coloured skin suit sped past.
It was a hard push up the North shore of Loch Rannoch into a 20mph plus gusting wind, narrowly avoiding being blown off our bikes on a couple of occasions. Although drizzling so far, it had now started to rain in earnest. We politely thanked the guy we had been drafting for the last ten miles and offered him one of the Kinder Buenos but I guess he thought we were stalking him as he sped off at top speed!
A relaxing run down the South shore of Loch Rannoch provided some respite and a further Kinder Bueno energy boost and get us past the second feed station and up to the top of Shiehallion. Alan and Davie were nonplussed when we cycled straight past station two waving- we subsequently found out they had bananas and water and were waiting for us, oops!
The King Of the Mountain section didn’t see us setting any records but we avoided the “walk of shame” and got to the top for first stop of the day. The punishing runs down to Sorn had paid off. It was very cold and windy at the top so we set off again as quickly as possible having refuelled and topped up with water.
Although steep we actually had to peddle hard to get down Shiehallion, facing into the strong wind again for a punishing ride up to Fortingall before turning round and cruising back down Glen Lyon with the wind behind us, admiring the view.
The slightly more benign conditions gave us the chance to chat and for Pauline to teach me the finer points of cycling with no hands until I realised that not really sensible 70 miles into an 81 mile cycle!
We had pinned our hopes for a spectacular finish on a strategic caffeine shot 15 miles from the end, I’m not sure if it didn’t work or whether we had just used most of our reserves getting that far!
We were both prepared and in low gear for the hairpin bend and immediate steep hill at Logierait which has claimed many a scalp. Four nippy hills over the last four miles into Pitlochry and the finish line and we clocked in at a respectable 5 hrs 39 minutes.
Although a tough day given the conditions, it didn’t take long to confirm that we would be signing up again for next year.
Sorry to advise you all that Sunday’s session has had to be cancelled because Alister Watson has been taken ill and the
track is going to be closed.
We are looking into sharing a booking at Manchester velodrome with St Christopher’s CC, probably on a
Sunday morning, later in the autumn. Everyone will be emailed when we get further details.
We had a nice day for the 10 mile, but were faced with a bit of a head wind for the main part of the route, but luckily it stayed dry. Typically, it was pouring on the day of the hill climb!
Well done to all those who took part in both events.
Club 10 mile Club Championship 2011
1 Russell Walker 26’33″
2 Ross Cunningham 26’44″
3 Lee Gardner 26’48″
4 Kieran Mooney 28’29″
5 Andy Cattenach 30’40″
6 Audrey Meikle 36’50″
St Christopher’s CC
1 Colin Meikle 26’40″
2 David Turner 27’50″
3 Andy Wilson 32’10″
Club Hill Climb Championship 2011
1 Ross Cunningham 4.36
2 Russell Walker 4.59
3 Kieran Mooney 5.12
4 Jonny Grainger 5.34
5 Garry Quinn 7.06