One Down – 9 To Go!

The Ten to Tackle for Macmillan Cancer Support are up and running, or cycling, having completed my first event of the year, the Stevenage and North Herts CTC Start of Summertime Special.

Each year Stevenage and North Herts CTC organises a series of events to celebrate the start of summertime. These events usually run on the day that the clocks change, but are sometimes pushed back a week due to other events. There are 3 different routes to choose from and I opted for the 110km route. 200km seemed a bit too far so early in the year (but I am planning one of these rides later on).

This was my first audax event and I arrived at Fairlands Valley lakes in Stevenage for the start to find the Mayor, Mayoress and Sky News all in attendance. I had no idea it was such a big event but a report into cycling published the day before had brought the TV crews along to see what all the fuss is about when it comes to cycling.

This event was different to the usual Sportive. We have a route sheet telling us where to go, there were no arrows stuck on lampposts to guide us round. There were various points that we had to “check in” and get our brevet cards stamped just to prove we had completed the route, the primary objective being to just ‘get round’.

My guide for the day was a 70 year old cyclist. He used to race he told me on the way round but now sticks to a slower pace of cycling, but he was going fast enough on the flats. He led the way and I helped him up the climbs en route, so mission accomplished and the first of my Ten to Tackle completed.

Next up, my return to the Etape Loch Ness in 10 days time!