A great weekend with friends!
On Saturday we took part in the Ronde van Vlaanderen sportive. A 140km ride with 17 climbs. The atmosphere was incredible with over 16,000 people taking part; hundreds of spectators on the route, which included nearly all the climbs that the pro peloton would tackle the following day!
We left the house in Zottegem and rode to the start town of Oudenaarde. After collecting our numbers and making full use of the free coffee dispensers, we set off. Little did we know we had started the wrong route! We added a further 20km’s to the ride correcting our mistake, finally making a start on the correct route at 10am, having left the house 2.5 hours earlier!
Highlights from the ride were the Oude Kwaremont, Koppenberg and the Paterberg. It was a great laugh to ride hard with Ginge (Matt) who’s as strong as ever and to see Dusty (Alex) back on his bike, doing what he does best, wheel-sucking! Joking aside, his riding surprised me and he now has a new found love for Flanders and the cobbled climbs! The same can’t be said about the cobbled descents or flat sectors however!
A long day in the saddle! The sportive itself taking 6 hours, + our mistake early on and riding to and from the house totaled over 8 hours and 216km’s. A great day out nonetheless and good training too!
Sunday we watched the Pro’s on the Oude Kwaremont. This was a great location to spectate for the 2017 edition of the Tour of Flanders due to the Paterberg, Oude Kwaremont loop that was Incorporated.
We had a clear view of the cobbles and used a grass bank to get above the crowds. A big screen nearby kept us up to date with the race. We got talking to some locals from a nearby hospitality tent, who wangled some free beers and some mementos for us!
The sun was shining all day and the atmosphere was just amazing! I’ve never experienced anything like this before and it motivates me even more that maybe one day I’ll be able to ride it!
We ended a great weekend celebrating a Belgium win in the finishing town of Oudenaarde. A great time was had by all and already looking forward to next years edition!
Commonwealth Games 2018
Today marks 365 days until the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. This is something that is crucially important and the major upcoming goal in my cycling career. The hard work started a long time ago and I will continue to make all the relevant sacrifices to get myself there.
Last year I achieved two 22nd places in the National 25 and 50 mile time trials. This gave me two ‘B’ qualifications towards selection for the games. I hope now that I’m riding full time, I will make significant improvements on last years performance. This year I’m hoping to get more than one ‘A’ qualifying ride. This requires a top 10 position in either the National Circuit Time Trial, National 25 or the the National 10 Mile time trial.
Although a tough ask as I’m 100% focused on road racing, I have factored in the training required to achieve this.
Here is a picture of me riding the fastest 25 Mile Time Trial by a Guern; last year in the National 25 Mile Time Trial in Norwich. A time of 49.45.