Monday, 28 September 2009

Easy Audax.....hmph not a chance.

Route to Hebden Bridge and back, Audax route

Originally Steve F (M.C.C) Joe (M.C.C) and Pantani (C.U.N.T) were going to do an audax in Cheshire on Tuesday but I had a dental appointment so asked Joe if he could do Monday, he couldn't. I told them just go on Tuesday there'll be loadsa time for me to do another audax but in the end Monday was decided with Steve and Pete. Steve being Steve the route must be nice and flat so I'd go out on an easy spin. Met at Steve's where Pantani and I drank a can o' Red Bull as part of our training ritual.They had decided to do an audax around Hebden Bridge instead which Steve found on the net, just 60 miles I was told. Easy Peasy! I was fully kitted out as usual but dosy Pete left his ruck sack full of goodies at Steves so guess who had to pay for all the brews....Steve hehehe.

Like I said before nice and easy to Littleborough and Pete forged a good lead getting up to the start of the MCC hill climb. He carried on whilst I stopped to set my watch and time myself. My previous best a couple of months ago was about 10mins 30 ish? a previous blog post should confirm that. Conditions were perfect. Dry, little wind, little traffic and a pace man! Slowly I was catching up my pace man who looked back about 3/4 way up and kicked whilst I was 20m off his wheel. Managed to overtake him very close to the top and either Pantani had done really well or I had done pretty bad. I sprinted the last 50 metres and collapsed at the top!! Gasping. Stopped my watch but couldn't look at it yet and Pete stood over me saying he was saving himself and he'd never get in that state :P He disappeared round the corner to breathe/ suck up copious amounts of air. Looked at my time of 9mins 5 secs. Very impressed. Not too sure on the record, S Penny had done 8.53 and W sutcliffe 7.59 but hes over 70 years old isn't he? is that right that time? Lost? Bloody good going if thats what I have to beat but I did do my time on a very heavily laden Vanquish. (I'd say +4kilos over a clean Jamis and little gear)

Carried on to Hebden where the other 2 were thinking about a cafe stop already. Forget it I said, only just started! FFS. Another killer hill beckoned where we waited for Steve near the top and at every junction as he had the directions. Can't be any more hills after the 2 killers we had already been on? It was getting very drizzly and a little foggy the higher we were getting. Scenery was terrifc and we were all loving the ride so far anyway. Another ascent followed after a quick descent and another 'killer mile' just like at Mow Cop was infront of us just before haworth. It was getting very very wet now and all the downhills were taken carefully. In the dry there were some 40mphers but I would max at 17mph as it was way too dangerous coz I didn't know the route and there were always twisty curves all over the show.We missed a designated coffee stop and asked directions for Scar Top which a geezer didn't know but 1/2 mile further up the road from him was Scar top!More climbing followed by more climbing and I can't believe map my ride has the middle portion at near 0 feet because we were permanently high up in the hills and going higher until a mad descent into Keighley. -12% for a long way. Steve had a planned cafe stop on his Audax route map called Rossi's?

This trend of being soaking wet on every ride I have done recently has to stop! I asked some stuck up cow in the cafe if we could put our bikes inside at the back where no one was sitting, it was empty too bar 2 couples. She refused so I just left without saying anything.The high St was just round the corner and another cafe was found with an outdoor shelter, it was called Wild's. Steve and Pete went in whilst I looked after the bikes. There were undesirables circling like hawks just out side the Post Office and if they got too close I was prepared to head butt a few of them but they never entered my exclusion zone.In the cafe I noticed a massive pile of Bavarian slices or similar on the counter as samples so asked greedy Pete if he would give me one. The fecker gave me the bird. I asked again very politley before the artillary was going to come flying and he refused again, as he took another few slices.Right, I shouted into the shop that greedy Pete was nicking all the samples and that he wouldn't need any tea tonight as he has already stuffed his face. The servers didn't know what to say or do so I shouted again to kick the git out. Some big builder bloke was in the shop and heard what was going on so snatched the plate from Pete and went out side to offer me some cakey. There was hardly any left and the plate was a mountain to begin with. I took a piece but was still unhappy so asked Pete to give me a piece!!!I shouted to the scrotey's who were still loitering round if they wanted a free bike and pointed to Petes! hahaha he came running out of the shop with a couple of pieces of cake. The girl behind the counter said to greedy Pete that he might as well finish the plate off, which he felt obliged to and then we left him to stuff his face with pizza and pasty. I just had a tiny sausage roll and a brew.

My gloves were soaking but put them on anyway and it was very cold as we stood around for a while. Set off back to Hebden, Steve said 8 miles but the signs said otherwise at 13miles. More climbing and more climbing and more climbing and more climbing then another steep slow descent into Hebden. That part of the ride was the worst as there was a good 1/2cm of water on the road, it was still throwing it down,cold and very foggy. Just like Holmfirth Rd yesterday. Home beckoned and we were a bit demoralised. The anticipated cafe stop at Hebden never materialised and we kept going once Steve eventually arrived. He had bonked about 40 miles into the journey and was struggling big time. We tried to go at Steves pace but he told us just to go on ahead. The final journey home was trivial and not worth describing except a gazcident where a silly cow over took me, turned left infront of me and stopped in the middle of the bastard road so I nearly whacked her car. Lucky there wasn't another car on the outside of me so I swerved, but I was prepared to run into the silly cows car just in case so I could claim from her insurance. I should have stopped and given her a massive earful but if I stopped I wasn't sure that I could carry on again. I wasn't bonking or anything just a little achy from all the bastard climbing and me being me didn't like to mess around with them. I am quite surprised I can last so long on little/no food. A quick conflab with some MCC members yesterday suggested I should be feeling dizzy after a couple of hours + with no food but not me. Rode quite strongly home as was able to hit small hills hard, just wanted to get home for a hot shower and a chippy tea!!!!!!!!!!!

4000ft of climbing, map my ride has to be wrong! 85 miles and 13mph average :~( which couldn't be helped really. It started off as one of the most fantastic rides ever as it was sooo challenging just as I thought my legs were going to have a rest day but quickly deteriorated due to the extreme weather conditions.

I have ridden virtually every day for 11days, last Friday Pete and I went out which I forgot about 35miles 17.5mph average to Edenfield, bacup,Whitworth and back. Its time for a rest and recouperation. The last 2 days I have done 180miles and been out 16 hrs!!!!! Pete spotted that my tyre sidewall looked like it was ready for bursting as it had a gash in it so looks like Ill be getting new tyres after all. Shame, because nothing would puncture my Stelvios. Thinking of some 20's instead of 23's not for winter though more for racing. Joe has 20's and they look so narrow. I wonder if they are faster must be some advantage or they wouldn't sell them?


  1. That sounds like a great ride.

    I'm effectively going the other way next week from Tunstall (Not a million miles from Mow-cop) to Hebden Bridge.

    I've plotted my route out as 72miles each way so if there's 4000ft of climbing in there i'm going to cry!

  2. Where do you get the energy from?

    I believe Chris is after contacting you (the guy from Sunday) - can I pass on your email address to him?

  3. Think i'm ill now :( dry throat and itchy cough so no more energy. Yeah thats fine, pass on my email, thx for asking.

  4. It is correct that Mr Sutcliffe has riddent he hill climbint hat time. He's mega! I've watched him ride it and he looks amazing when he does. you'll have your work cut out if he's riding it too!

    BTW mapmyride lies big time about the elevation stats. Use bikehike if you want the correct stats (it uses both google earth and OS maps so is pretty much spot on).