12th of 120, 4:45 and a Gold medal. Gotta be pleased with that. It turns out that all these months I missed out the last climb of the route up Staples Lane.
The weather was forecast for torrential rain but I was gonna be riding this event even if the whole route was flooded. It bookends my cycling year.
Last year I rode it in just over 6:30, with a bit of getting lost and a lot of being knackered and overweight. It kick started my attack on Alpe D'Huez and the FWC and of course, L'Etape du Tour so I had to race it again to see where I'd got to.
Ironically, in the 4 weeks since Etape I've had back problems, stomach problems and biscuit addiction problems so I'm back to 80kg again. Didn't make much difference on the day though.
Met up with an old acquaintance from Weybridge RC and rode with him for a while, he punctured at Box hill and I kept on going, keen to get that Gold medal.
Spent most of the ride on my own, it felt just like a training ride despite the wind and drizzle. The roads were wet, muddy and treacherous so I took it easy on the descents.
All in all a good day in the Hills and definitely time to hang up the cleats for a couple of months in preparation for the NYC Marathon. I'll still be using the Turbo for fitness ala the good advice WellWisher posted regarding cross-training but the only rides I'll be doing will be for pure pleasure. Ah, Bliss.