Twinkly Dave – Mud splattered bicycle and pizza enthusiast Growing old disgracefully

May 28, 2012

Put me in there. Anywhere, but in there somewhere

Filed under: bikes — dgpowell @ 11:16 am

One foot clipped in, one perched in the dust, staring down at the sun bleached, loose stones, thinking to myself “What, again?! Already?!”. Possibly not the ideal mindset to find yourself with on the start line of a race, but hey-ho, it’s all meant to be fun isn’t it?

That race starts with a bang and I instantly feel like I’m stood still as everyone else whooshes past me. Oh, wait, I AM stood still, literally wheelspinning on the tractionles earth. Damn it! I sit down and lurch forward as the rear tyre is offered some grip.
Lungs burn like they’re still raw from last week, legs protest strongly, the leaders start to shrink as they pull away. Looks like I won’t be racing for the win today then! Whatever, it doesn’t matter, there’s sets of lungs all around me just as wheezy. Many eyes locked jealously on the trail I’m inhabiting. I’ll race these guys. It’ll be fun no matter how far back in the pack I am.

It is fun. I take the technical sections with a bit of ginger-i-ness, this race is held in a quarry, which means lots of big rocks and I don’t want to rip a tyre (or worse). I’ve another ride planned for straight after the race, which I’m looking forward to, given the weather, so risking everything for a few seconds here and there doesn’t seem worth it. Somewhere around the 3rd lap my front mech decides that, after 24hrs of working flawlessly last weekend, now would be a good time to start buggering up, so I stop and lose a good 10 minutes faffing with it, testing it, faffing with it some more, testing it again and generally getting wound up with it until it agrees to play ball again.

This, of course, puts me in last place by some way. at least a lap, I imagine to myself. Whatever, the sun’s still shining, the trails are still closed for us racers and there’s still plenty of people around to race. So I do. Playing as much as racing, but still going forward and enjoying being on the bike. I finish a lap down, as I thought, but I do finish, not last (other people have mechanicals too you know!), certainly nowhere near first, but with a few decent lap times given what I was up to last weekend and the “softly softly” approach to the tricky bits of the race route. Good. Now lets go for a ride!

Dusty trail after dusty trail. For miles and miles. Straight past any opportunity to cut the ride short and head back to the car, despite getting really quite dehydrated. The bike feels ace, the sun warms exposed flesh as the (admittedly quite strong) breeze removes any excess heat, there’s barely anyone about in the hills. This’ll do. I’ll time the ride so I get home just in time for tea, because it’s one of those days where you can be that exact about how long things will take. Lovely.


Air-con goes on in the car ont he way home. I’ll have to stick the “summer” label on today. 🙂

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