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From there all I remember are some nice trails on old railways all the way to Blandford Forum. After that I remember a pleasant 5 miles through Wareham Forest and feeling homeward bound, I could get back to Swanage without any guidance from here and that psychologically felt good. Then it was around Old Harry Rocks a ride I had done in reverse a few years back while on holiday then a final climb up to Studland Hill and Ballard Down with views Swanage. Back along the seafront and through the High Street to the Red Lion where more goodies awaited us from Charlie the Bike Monger and luckily a vacant table in the restaurant.

As it turns out I was feeling unwell because I had caught Hand Foot and Mouth Disease from my disgusting little girls and the next day it took hold good and proper. There is talk of a Devon Gravel Dash, currently planned for one of the first weekends in October I did swap the tyres from Marathons to Sam Plus. We finally hit Llanberis at and found the 24 hour car park closed so we back tracked to a nearby layby and went to bed around It rained most of the night and the sheep were bleeting from the earliest hours.

We were due up at but I think it was more like by the time were fully awake.

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Breakfast was those prepacked porridge pots and Weetabix breakfast drinks. Tim pissed about with his bike a hardtail MTB for an inordinately long amount of time. It was by the time we got on the road as we cycled the road from the layby to Llanberis village.

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Tim needed the toilet, all the public conveniences were locked but as luck would have it there was a bank of portaloos lined up for an event that weekend. It starts on a tarmac lane that gets pretty steep pretty quick and I struggled even on my wide range cassette. Tim on his MTB gearing seemed to be ok. The weather was alright until the Halfway House at which point the mist rolled in and we lost the sun.

We summited about which meant we only had 40 minutes to get back down before the voluntary bike ban between and After photos and putting my spare socks on my hands we set off down the mountain. The mist was beginning to clear and breaks in the cloud allowed for beautiful photo opportunities that was disappear as soon as you got the camera out. The path was filling up walkers and the decent was slow. I sensed it was a little easier for Tim; though having said that he did come off his bike.

It took about 1hr 15 mins to get to the bottom. Maybe I had romanticised my last visit but this time we had over an hours wait for average food.


Back at the van we loaded up and were on our way home by It was cold and showers were forecast from onwards, but for now I was on a warm train. Helpfully the train was understaffed and we had to change at Horsham but luckily the train was waiting for us. We rolled into Victoria and grabbed a sandwich tuna and cucumber and a couple of packs of fruit Mentos from WHSmiths.

The Garmin Edge was missing a square of map for central London like what happened in Eastbourne but I had pre-uploaded a route to St.

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The ride was organised by Hummers over on yacf , he had us prepped to leave at and as Big Ben sounded actually one of the unnamed quarter bells we pedaled off. We rolled through Wellington Arch at Hyde Park Corner to pick up any later arrivals but there was no one there so we flew straight over to Putney Bridge to get out of London having to deal with the group fragmentation caused by all the traffic lights. The diversion took us between Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common to Surbiton when we collected 2 other riders. Here is a song about cycling in Richmond Park….

From Surbiton to Guildford we moved to mainly minor roads and at Guildford about we stopped for first breakfast. Subway was the second choice and the single sandwich artist cheese and toasted? After my 12 inches 6 inches for Barry we set off for Petersfield, at this point 3 of the group split off I think heading to Midhurst. There was a long section of undulating road, I think the A between Milford and Haslemere that had been recently resurfaced and was deserted, it was a pleasure to cycle but you could tell this would normally be buzzing — the benefit of riding at night.

At the bottom of one of the undulations I saw a bike lose control, do a degree spin and roll backwards but whoever was on it managed to stay upright — top marks to them.

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We were well ahead of time so we stayed at McDs, drank hot drinks and ate tube eggs. From Petersfield back felt like no time at all and after a climb at Kiln Lane it was pretty much downhill. At Rowlands Castle we had the 3rd puncture, it was Barry again but I stayed with him this time and took photos — the others carried on. With Barry reinflated we continued down towards Havant where we picked up another puncturee, the trio soon became a duo again as Barry pulled off at Bedhampton.

The naysayers always have the same two perceived negatives: 1. Answers: 1.

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What you lose in view though you still get to see a lot in the moonlight you gain in the freedom of the road and alternative perspective of your journey. The next one will be October , keep checking yacf for details. The riders self divided into 4 groups, 1 being the fastest, Barry and I choose group 2. The Hotchillee ride captains we had The Bull very nice chap kept the bunch in good shape and speed, and dealt with the few punctures that the autumn roads threw at the 30 or so riders.

We maintained a good speed upto the infamous Box Hill, which turned out to be not so infamous; but its reputation preceded it and I ended up taking it much easier than I should have. Out of interest, on the Portsmouth roads a typical Strava segment would be tackled by some people, the Box Hill segment has been attempted by near on 30, — no doubt in part due to the RideLondon route. The puncture was from a thorn by the way, and as it happens, when we loaded the bikes in the car at the end of the day I noticed my rear was flat, that too was a thorn.

Designed for speed chains, they are precision CNC-machined from a tough and resilient T6 alloy. They are light too, at just 10g each. Double layered on the knees and with flatlocked seams for extra comfort. Seat pad with gel inserts ideal for pre-Classics endurance rides. Also shows speed, location and altitude, handy for stats fans emulating the pros going down the Poggio this March. The next best thing to having your own personal masseur, the complete kit includes pre-race warm-up cream, chammy cream and post race wipes, sanitiser and balm.

Very light at grams with a state of the art Easton EC90m carbon sole, there is nothing old fashioned about these stylish racing shoes which are also available in bright orange. Cavendish has been racing on GB tracks this winter as he attempts to qualify for the GB track squad in Rio.

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Mark Cavendish is facing all kinds of tests this season. A new team of course, as well as a return to track racing, an Olympic Games and a world road race championship course that suits him. Nonetheless, it was a timely reminder of his mindset. He likes to be right, and if things are anything but, he does what he can to make them such.

The other target is the world championships road race in Qatar on October 16, but more of that later. Meeting these two objectives in would arguably complete his CV assuming one omits Paris-Tours, which he said he would win on numerous occasions back in , and help make the year as significant in his career as his breakthrough was. Competition most likely comes from fledgling rider Jon Dibben who, like Cavendish, is a product of the British Cycling Academy Programme. But it goes down to performance. However, the first two of those events feature in the discipline, alongside a 15km scratch race, elimination race, 1km TT and metre flying lap.

It marginally favours endurance riders read: Cavendish over pure track sprinters. But with placings decided by the highest number of points across all six, finishing highly in each is the key. That was unheard of for an endurance rider then. Obviously if you do too much endurance [work] it affects that. The thing is, when Cav puts a number on, people are like sheep with him. It negates his ability to perform.

With that comes frustration. The bigger the names in the omnium, the more his chances are enhanced. But he will pay [suffer] in the kilo. In the highest-level omnium he has raced to date, he placed fourth overall, with his results in the individual pursuit 16th and points race 17th denying him a podium finish. Speaking before the meeting, he gave a.

I may have a lot speed and no endurance, or massive endurance but no speed. He arguably faces more scrutiny than any other roadman sprinter when he loses a bike race, and if he takes several months before claiming his first victory as per , when he opened his account at the end of March , talk of. In the past, that has seemingly impacted his riding; two crashes at the Tour de Suisse and Tour de France six years ago, which other riders blamed him for, spring to mind.

He needs to avoid the latter two predicaments, at least, if he has any chance of being a success. What could make the difference for Cavendish come July is how he spent the winter. On a windy, damp day in early January, Cycle Sport watched the Manxman motor-pacing a derny at 55kph pace for 20 minutes. He looked comfortable and, most significantly, looked.