During the Summer I managed to contract Glandular Fever so that put me off the bike and put paid to any thoughts of competing in the 3 Peaks race. Under doctors orders I shouldn't have been back on the bike till mid October at the earliest but as I felt ok I thought I'd give Callendar Park race a go, having done one interval session since June I knew this race wasn't going to be pretty so slipped in at the back and settled down to what I was sure would be a grim 3/4 of an hour.
Sure enough, off we set and it was obvious straight away that what little speed was there was going going to go off very quickly. I settled into a bit of a slow rhythm and started to enjoy myself, the Challenge Chicanes were really good to begin with but as it got a bit greasier I should have swapped bikes to the Baby Limus shod one, but hey this was just a sociable ride in the park? Aye right, the leaders went past on the final lap and I was pretty sure there was an interloper in the sunshine sneaking through with them, SPRINT for everything I was worth (chicanes spot on ;-)) and that 72nd place was mine
A good day out in the sunshine wearing the old school tropical white skinsuit.
I sat out the next round at Knockburn Loch due to the arrival of this bundle of fun
And so to Strathclyde Park, I decided to race the seniors as it meant I could leave that morning and be down in time for the race. A great plan except for the weather on the way down which made driving challenging. I made it in time to get signed on, changed and then a quick lap of the course and then off we set in pouring rain and near gale force winds, the attrition rate was quite high with quite a few DNS and DNFs. There was a crash at the start which held up a number of folk but I managed to sneak by and get the Challenge Limus into the grass/mud mid pack, these tyres were awesome all race and as I got more confident with them I settled into a reasonable groove, passed a few folk and got passed by a few, the red gravel climb was every bit as bad as I remembered but was told of the line to take by a clubmate so that made it a bit easier. The run up was enjoyable except for the camera man hidden behind a tree with a huge flash, not the first time that s happened in this park! then into a bit of single track through the trees, bit of a bombhole then back into the carpark and away we go again. I really started to enjoy this race even when the the real rain started, it got grim out there but did keep the race bike clean, no need to change it. 43rd in the seniors and a most enjoyable day out.
The glandular fever seems to have abated to be replaced with Crossfever which I am very pleased about!!
The weather was certainly different to the last time I was out preparing the course at Glengorm Castle for the tenth anniversary of Cross at the Castle
Many thanks to Challenge tyres for the speed and grip they provided magnificently for both races, now onwards to the mud bath at Fife!! #crosslove
Many thanks to to big Mick Martin for the photos