Saturday 8th September and I rode the Tour Ride, the official sportive of the Tour of Britain. Pretty much the full first stage, with just a few changes of route.
I was lucky enough to get into the first group of 50 riders to leave Christchurch Park at 8am, just 6 people ahead of me. Great conditions as first Woodbridge, then Snape, Aldburgh and Thorpness passed. Foolishly I latched onto the back of a big group of fast riders. I reached the first stop at Southwold at 20mph average.
I rode by myself for sometime before hooking up with two men wearing Woodbridge to Watergate Bay shirts. We approached Great Yarmouth and 20 plus police motorbikes guided us through the midday traffic, across red lights, blocking junctions in our favour. Fantastic.
I stopped for the third and final time at 90 miles. My average speed had tumbled and everything felt uncomfortable. I pushed on, and on, and on by myself. I couldn't find anyone to latch onto. Painful. At 111 miles, Swanton Morley if I remember correctly, and a short, sharp hill was enough to stop some riders ahead of me. I just managed to clear it in the big ring. Only just. I rode the last hour at 15 mph.
I crossed the line with an elapsed time of 8:06 ish (can't remember for sure, it was a bit if a blur), riding time 7:38 for 128.63 miles.