Rapha Rides – ManchesterAugust 28, 2017
Rapha is visiting 20 cities around the world to celebrate the communities that make this beautiful sport so different, this month it’s Manchester.
Up at 5:30AM I pack my frame bag with double soreen, the necessary tools and rain jacket and set off on my way.
I felt positive about hitting 300KM. One of my Rapha 500 rides was in the cold, ice and rain and I managed that so it didn’t seem unrealistic to push for 300KM with the sun on my side? Or so I thought…
I was maybe a little bit optimistic when considering the amount of climbing when plotting my route. Albite I didn’t know the wind was going to be so strong otherwise it would have been more manageable.
The Yorkshire Dales can be so unpredictable at the best of times, even in beautiful sunshine it can change within minutes. About 100km in I stopped at a little village called leyburn for a coffee and a pork pie, the weather was windy but the sun was shinning. I was literally on the cusp of the Dales and although the wind was strong I felt okay, fuelled up and with the weather looking like it might continue to shine I battled on.
It’s been a while since I’ve been out so far, especially on my own. If I’m honest, around about 140KM when the clouds came over, I began to feel very unsettled, anxious and a little sick. The thought of being stuck in the pouring rain in the middle of no where with 160km to go didn’t help either. A weird feeling I’ve never really experienced before.
As mentioned the wind was utterly relentless. I’ve never experienced a day where I’ve had a none stop head wind all day. Even my ride to Hull over Rapha 500 was fine on the way out towards Hull and destructive on the way back. 140km in I’d felt like I’d had enough, not physically but just mentally, getting no where fast with 100% effort is incredibly frustrating.
In my frustration I decided to stop for a snack and quick phone call to my girl friend. I didn’t realise how important a quick phone call could be, it takes you away from whatever situation or mood your in. An important factor for the future TCR…
The iron bridge seemed a pretty fitting place to stop for food. With no shelter from the wind I didn’t stick around for long, 3 sandwiches thrown down and went on my way.
235km, 10 hours of solid head wind with a fairly decent amount of climbing. On the plus side, physically I felt good, it was more the frustration of time and how long it was taking me to cover any distance. It all felt very slow. I guess this is all a good test for the real thing as no doubt I’ll have days similar to this.